St Petersburg, Mariinsky Theatre

Eugene Onegin

lyric opera in three acts, seven scenes

performed in Russian
(the performance will have synchronised Russian and English supertitles)
In honour of Yuri Temirkanov's 80th jubilee



Pavel Smelkov

Eugene Onegin: Alexei Markov
Tatyana: Yekaterina Goncharova
Lensky: Sergei Skorokhodov
Olga: Yulia Matochkina
Prince Gremin: Gennady Bezzubenkov


Yuri Temirkanov celebrates his birthday on 10 December. The main celebrations will take place in December at the St Petersburg Philharmonic, which the conductor has helmed for 30 years. The Mariinsky (Kirov) Theatre’s history also has its own Temirkanov’s epoch, which lasted from 1976 to 1988. Back then new titles, new performers, and new ideas appeared at the theatre. Prokofiev’s War and Peace (1977), the recently created Shchedrin’s Dead Souls (1978), world premieres of Andrei Petrov’s Mayakovsky Begins and Peter the Great were major events in the city’s music life. But the most favorite productions, which still form the repertory of the Mariinsky Theatre, include Eugene Onegin (1982) and The Queen of Spades (1984). Temirkanov wore two hats for the productions: that of Musical Director and that of Stage Director. Theatre-goers love these productions for their poetic nature and psychological finesse, for staying true to the composer’s vision, for stylistic accuracy, and for a perfect alliance between a director, a conductor, and a designer (Yuri Temirkanov and Igor Ivanov). Their Eugene Onegin, which has not left the stage for more than 35 years, recently celebrated 150 years at the theatre. For the 12 December performance, both the younger and older generations of artistes will appear on stage. Eugene Onegin, as well as their work with Temirkanov, marked an important milestone in their careers.


Music by Pyotr Tchaikovsky
Libretto by Pyotr Tchaikovsky and Konstantin Shilovsky after the poetic novel of the same name by Alexander Pushkin

Stage Director: Yuri Temirkanov
Set Designer: Igor Ivanov
Principal Chorus Master: Andrei Petrenko
Musical Preparation: Irina Soboleva
Choreographer: Dmitry Bryantsev


The garden on the Larins’ estate. In the distance, Tatiana and Olga can be heard singing. Listening to them, Mrs Larina and Filippievna the nanny recall their own younger days. Visitors appear unexpectedly: Vladimir Lensky, the Larins’ neighbour and Olga’s fiancé, has brought with him his friend Onegin – a young man recently come down to the country from the capital. While Lensky declares his love to Olga, the new visitor chats with Tatiana. The nanny notes how excited Tatiana is at the meeting.

Tatiana’s bedroom. Tatiana cannot sleep. Filippievna tries to dispel her anxiety with the tale of her own maidenly status. Once alone, Tatiana writes a letter to Onegin. With the arrival of dawn, she asks the nanny to deliver the letter.

The Larins’ garden. Tatiana anxiously awaits a reply. Eugene appears – he is touched by her declaration but is unable to return her love.

The Larins’ house. A ball in honour of Tatiana’s name day. Lensky has convinced his friend to visit the Larins, but the party and the guests serve to irritate Onegin. In revenge, he begins to play court to Olga. The readiness with which the young woman accepts his attentions drives Lensky to despair. He starts a quarrel with Onegin and challenges him to a duel.

An abandoned mill. Lensky and his second await the arrival of Onegin. Lensky mournfully and nostalgically contemplates the former “golden days” of his youth. At last the rival comes. The former friends are willing to forget any offence caused, but ideals of honour gain the upper hand. A shot rings out and Lensky drops down dead.

A room in a luxurious mansion in St Petersburg. Following a lengthy absence, Onegin returns to live in the capital. He finds Tatiana a married woman, now at the centre of attention having taken her place in high society. Her husband Prince Gremin speaks to Onegin of his happiness. The transformation of the young woman he knew awakens feelings of love in Onegin’s heart.

The drawing-room in Gremin’s house. Weeping, Tatiana reads Onegin’s letter. Suddenly he himself appears. With passionate prayer, Onegin succeeds in extracting a confession that she still loves him. But Tatiana’s decision is resolute: she will remain faithful to her husband.

World premiere: 17 March 1879, Maly Theatre, Moscow
Premiere of this production: 13 November 1982, Kirov Theatre of Opera and Ballet, Leningrad

Running time: 3 hours 50 minutes
The performance has two intervals

Age category 6+

Eugene Onegin
on the playbill
11 June 2019, 19:30
12 June 2019, 19:30
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