Lifestyle • 01 July, 2019

The Astana Opera to open the Tour to Tashkent with the Opera Abai

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Within the framework of the Year of Kazakhstan in Uzbekistan, the Astana Opera will present Kazakh and world classical masterpieces on tour in Tashkent: on July 10 – Akhmet Zhubanov and Latyf Khamidi’s opera Abai, and on July 13 – Giacomo Puccini’s opera Madama Butterfly. The tour will take place at the Alisher Navoi State Academic Bolshoi Theatre of Uzbekistan with the support of the Ministry of Culture and Sports of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

It should be noted that this is the first tour to Uzbekistan in the history of the Astana Opera. It is not by chance that the opera Abai was included in the tour program, as just in a year’s time the international music community will celebrate the 175th anniversary of the great Kazakh poet, composer, educator and philosopher Abai.

The Uzbek audience will have an opportunity to get to know magnificent voices, as well as brilliant artistry and acting skills of famous opera singers Sundet Baigozhin, Saltanat Akhmetova, Meir Bainesh, Beimbet Tanarykov, Talgat Galeyev, Tatyana Vitsinskaya, Yerzhan Saipov, Bolat Yessimkhanov, Ramzat Balakishiyev, Shyngys Rassylkhan and many others.

The Symphony Orchestra will be performing under the baton of the Honoured Worker of Kazakhstan, laureate of the State Prize of Kazakhstan, great-grandson of Akhmet Zhubanov – renowned conductor Alan Buribayev. Thanks to the maestro, the opera Abai was performed for the first time in German at the Meininger Staatstheater in South Thuringia. He is also the Music Director of this opera production at the Astana Opera. National classical masterpiece performed by the capital’s company was a great success among the audience in Italy. In 2018, members of the Astana Opera creative team received the State Prize of the Republic of Kazakhstan for this production.

It is safe to say that the opera Abai is the hallmark of the culture and art of Kazakhstan.

Let us remind that in April, the President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev and President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev opened the Year of Kazakhstan in Uzbekistan. In their speeches, the Heads of State noted the long-standing traditions of friendship and good neighborliness that unite Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

On July 13, Giacomo Puccini’s opera Madama Butterfly will continue the tour program. The Music Director and Conductor – Alan Buribayev, Stage Director – Lorenzo Amato, Set Designer – Ezio Frigerio, Costume Designer – the Academy Award winner Franca Squarciapino.

Giacomo Puccini’s opera is a story of great and pure love of the young geisha, named Cio-Cio-san (Butterfly) for her beauty and grace. She fell in love with the United States Navy Lieutenant B.F. Pinkerton, a frivolous man who, according to him, was accustomed to “making the flowers of every shore his treasure”.

The main parts will be performed by: the Honoured Worker of Kazakhstan, Knight of the Order of the Star of Italy Medet Chotabayev, who will portray the carefree, adventure-loving Pinkerton. The Honoured Artist of Kazakhstan Zhannat Baktai will create a difficult part of Madama Butterfly. The Honoured Worker of Kazakhstan Dina Khamzina will present trusted servant Suzuki. The Honoured Worker of Kazakhstan Talgat Mussabayev will interpret the role of the distinguished United States Consul at Nagasaki Sharpless.

A whole world created onstage will captivate the audience’s attention. For this, unique full-scale structures were used: an 18-meter pool, in which, it seems, one can see the reflection of both the sun and the stars. Traditional houses – minkas, made of wood and bamboo, with the interiors decorated with sakura branches and drawings, are also worthy of attention.

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