Calendar of Music Events

Pärnu Opera Days. Bronius Kutavičius "The Bear"

05.07.2024
Location: Pärnu Concert Hall
Time: 19:00

Director Gintaras Varnas
Set Designer Gintaras Makarevičius
Costume Designer Dainius Bendikas
Lighting Designer Vilius Vilutis
Choreographer Mantas Stabačinskas
Choirmaster Vladimiras Konstantinovas

Soloists, opera choir and symphony orchestra of Klaipėda State Music Theatre
Conductor Martynas Staškus

Cast:
Count Šemeta ANDRIUS APŠEGA
Julia, Count’s fiancée GUNTA GELGOTĖ
Professor VLADIMIRAS PRUDNIKOVAS
Countess, Count’s mother JOVITA VAŠKEVIČIŪTĖ
One-eyed old woman AURELIJA DOVYDAITIENĖ
Doctor TADAS JAKAS
Wedding marshal MINDAUGAS ROJUS
Count’s doppelganger ŠARŪNAS ŠAPALAS
Pranciškus
Count’s mute butler VIRGINIJUS PUPŠYS
Chorus soloist EMILIA JANINA KOZŁOWSKA
Reciter (from the recording) VLADIMIRAS KONSTANINOVAS

Puppeteers:
LOTTA AAKKO, RAMUNĖ DEGUTYTĖ, MILDA VALAITYTĖ, GERMANAS URBONAVIČIUS

Music by Bronius Kutavičius
Libretto by Aušra Marija Sluckaitė-Jurašienė

The story is set in the ‘savage land’ – a remote corner in 19th-century Samogitia – where folk customs and pagan beliefs still have a hold on population. A pastor coming from Königsberg to visit his old friend, Count Szémioth, finds himself the guest of a strange family consisting of the young count, Michel, who exhibits animalistic behaviours, and his mad mother who, as legend has it, was raped by a bear at her own wedding. Reputed to be the product of this bestial assault, the half-human half-bear falls in love with the beautiful girl from the next manor, Miss Julia, and asks for her hand in marriage in hopes of taming his dual nature. But the beast takes over his personality until he finally kills his bride by a bite to her throat on their wedding night …

“The Bear” (2000) is the third opera by Lithuanian composer Bronius Kutavičius (1932–2021) and his first contribution to the genre of grand opera – if not in terms of duration, then in terms of large-scale cast including many soloists, full orchestra, mixed choir, and even ballet scenes. It is often described as a ‘mystic thriller’ based on a libretto by Lithuanian writer Aušra Marija Sluckaitė-Jurašienė, in which she retold the story of a bloody wedding taken from the gothic fantasy novella Lokis (1869) by Prosper Mérimée.

An opera in 2 acts, performed in Lithuanian. Subtitles in Estonian and English.
Duration: appr. 2 hrs. (including one intermission)

Info and tickets: Eesti Kontsert
 
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