Astana Opera artists tour neighboring countries, enjoy great success
NUR-SULTAN. KAZINFORM Astana Opera’s brilliant artists – ballet soloists Anastasia Zaklinskaya and Serik Nakyspekov, principal soloist of opera company Tatyana Vitsinskaya and opera soloist Sayan Issin caused a sensation, performing with great success on tour in the leading opera houses of Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan.
On April 22, Anastasia Zaklinskaya and Serik Nakyspekov elicited heavy rounds of applause of the Tashkent audience by performing the main parts of Zobeide and the Golden Slave in the spectacular ballet Schéhérazade choreographed by Michel Fokine to Rimsky-Korsakov’s music at the Alisher Navoi State Academic Bolshoi Theatre of Opera and Ballet. Within the framework of the VI International Opera and Ballet Festival «Tashkent Spring», Kazakh ballet soloists also portrayed the Polovtsian Princess and the Warrior Chieftain in Borodin’s Polovtsian Dances for Uzbekistan’s classical art aficionados, the Astana Opera official website reads.
«Representing our ballet company at foreign venues is a great honour and responsibility. Therefore, we have been preparing very thoroughly, making every effort to perform at a worthy level. Overall, tour performances are of great importance in the life of every artist. This is the expansion of horizons, communication and exchange of experience with foreign colleagues. This time we performed together with the ballet dancers of the Alisher Navoi Theatre. I would like to thank them very much for the warm welcome and support and express my gratitude for the invitation to the company’s chief ballet master, People’s Artist of Russia Andris Liepa. I sincerely hope that we managed to please the residents and guests of Tashkent,» Anastasia Zaklinskaya said.
International competitions laureate Serik Nakyspekov partnered the talented artist.
«Tashkent’s audience received us wonderfully and did not let us leave the stage for about 20 minutes after the performance. There was a full house with no empty seats in the hall whatsoever. The viewers were sitting even in the aisles and on the stairs. Everyone really liked the performance, there was a good feedback – they appreciated all our work, all the energy that we tried to convey. I would like to note that in Tashkent it was my debut as the Warrior Chieftain in Borodin’s Polovtsian Dances. This hero is very close to me in spirit, he is a representative of the Turkic people, and in this scene he represents the image of a brave warrior, temperamental, courageous and strong. I already have similar characters in my repertoire, as they suit my nature, both externally and internally, so it was not difficult for me to get into character. There are a lot of jumps and technically complex elements in the choreography of this number, which also fits my technical ‘arsenal’ of a ballet dancer. Preparing for the performance was also not particularly difficult in terms of technique, image and zest. I learned the part literally in three rehearsals in our opera house and two in Tashkent, where, together with the dancers of Uzbekistan, we marked out the trajectory of our movements onstage. In Tashkent, there are wonderful artists, management, organization, and everything was at the highest level. Everyone helped us, giving suggestions, creating all the necessary conditions so that we could perform comfortably. I am sure that Astana Opera’s artists will continue to collaborate with Tashkent’s opera house for the benefit of the development of the culture of the two countries,» Serik Nakyspekov shared.
No less warm welcome was given to their colleagues at the Abdylas Maldybayev Kyrgyz National Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre. On April 24, mezzo-soprano Tatyana Vitsinskaya and tenor Sayan Issin took the stage as the main characters Amneris and Radamès in Verdi’s famous opera Aida. On April 27, Kazakh vocalists took part in the Gala Concert of the world opera stars, dedicated to the 80th anniversary of the Abdylas Maldybayev Opera and Ballet Theatre and the anniversary of the outstanding opera singer People’s Artist of the USSR Bulat Minzhylkiyev. Famous baritone from Mongolia, guest soloist of many leading international opera houses Badral Chuluunbaatar, Honoured Artist of Russia Pavel Chernykh, Honoured Artist of Kyrgyzstan Zaira Raimbekova, and the best voices of the Bishkek opera houses performed together with the capital’s artists. The highlight of the evening was also the performance of popular opera arias in rock arrangements by the Mongolian group NUANS.
In Bishkek, this was Tatyana Vitsinskaya’s third performance of Amneris. Eight years ago, the principal soloist performed this part twice at different venues in Italy. The part, which is not easy in terms of vocal technique, not only allows the performer to reveal the heroine’s rich emotional inner world, to go through a difficult life path together with her, but also to demonstrate all the colours of the timbre, to show mastery of all registers of the vocal range. Due to this, every mezzo-soprano dreams of portraying this character and is proud having the part of Amneris in her repertoire.
«Participation in the opera festival was an extremely interesting experience for me, as well as an opportunity to not only get to know the local opera house’s creative team, but also the beautiful country of Kyrgyzstan. I was struck by the beauty of the opera house and its excellent acoustics. The walls of the auditorium are made of white marble, inside of which there is a void that creates an excellent resonator cavity, like the space inside a musical instrument. This creates a soft sound effect, and the voice flies without losing a single overtone and simply envelops the viewer. The most interesting thing on this trip for me was the meeting with the Italian conductor Maestro Sergio La Stella from the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, who has been working there for 42 years. From the first day, we immediately got to a 5-hour rehearsal of the opera Aida, and it was so interesting, the time flew by unnoticed. You could say that from the first second all the performers received a master class, where we all found great contact and built all the musical and stylistic nuances. Each subsequent orchestral rehearsal has also been an unforgettable professional experience. At the Gala Concert, I performed the famous Habanera from Bizet’s opera Carmen, making an entrance from the auditorium, which was a kind of gift for the Kyrgyz viewers, an opportunity to thank them for the warm welcome and hospitality. Contact with the audience is the most valuable thing in our profession. When you see the enthusiastic eyes of the viewers, full of happiness, you understand why you chose the profession of a performer. This gives energy for further creativity, and your work as an opera singer takes on meaning,» Tatyana Vitsinskaya summarized.
It is symbolic that the first part the ASTANA OPERA International Opera Academy attendee Sayan Issin performed at Astana Opera was also the part of Radamès in Verdi’s opera Aida in the production by the outstanding contemporary director Franco Zeffirelli.
«The staging of Giuseppe Verdi’s masterpiece is slightly different here. The stage director of the Kyrgyz opera house placed the accents differently. However, due to the fact that the storyline of the hero remains unchanged, therefore, my character interpretation of Radamès is generally similar. In addition, the conductor Sergio La Stella asked me to arrange some phrases a little differently, with a different attitude. In addition to performing in the opera production, Tatyana Vitsinskaya and I received an invitation to take part in the festive Gala Concert, where we presented Samson and Delilah’s duet from Camille Saint-Saëns’ opera Samson et Dalila. I also performed Federico’s lament from Francesco Cilea opera L’Arlesiana and Calaf’s aria from Giacomo Puccini’s opera Turandot. The choice of repertoire is due to the fact that all these brilliant works, complex both in their vocal technique and in terms of musical dramaturgy, are the hallmark of all famous tenors. Overall, both performances were held at a high level, and the main indicative is how the audience reacted, the stormy applause that they gave us,» Sayan Issin noted.