The Day covered the Donetsk premiere of Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman in December 2012. This unique Ukrainian-German project was the most important cultural event in Ukraine then. Let us recall that the Donbass Opera company performed this work of the classic composer in German, for the first time in our country. The project has enjoyed active support on the part of Donetsk Regional State Administration, Donetsk Regional Council, the German Embassy in Ukraine and the German Consulate General in Donetsk. The performance involves more than 250 people, including soloists, choir singers, orchestra members, ballet dancers, and technicians from all 12 technical departments of the opera theater.
The Flying Dutchman moored to the Donetsk stage again after a two-month absence. Maestro Vasyl Vasylenko occupied the captain’s bridge, er, the conductor’s stand, while principal roles were performed by the Donbass Opera soloists Oleksandr Blahodarny (The Dutchman), Tetiana Pliekhanova (Senta), Yurii Alekseichuk (Daland), and Vitalii Kozin (Erik).
German opera director Mara Kurotschka interpreted Wagner’s libretto as dream visions, while scenographers and designers Momme Hinrichs and Torge Moller, using an ultra-modern video projector, created a 3D stage, with the raging sea, Senta’s bed floating in it, underwater world, ghosts, ghost ship and other special effects. Costumes were designed by Julia Harttung (Germany).
Soloist Blahodarny has created an image of the Flying Dutchman, tragic and romantic at the same time. The actor descended spectacularly 12 meters to the stage while riding an anchor and won the audience with his virtuoso singing within the first seconds of performing.
The Dutchman found his equal in Senta, played by the Donbass Opera diva Tetiana Pliekhanova, who created an integral image of the heroine. Her performing of Senta’s dramatic ballad Did You Encounter the Ship on the Sea, one of the most important moments of the opera, was terrific. The Donetsk take on The Flying Dutchman combined the impact of new technologies and strict adherence to the opera traditions, creating, as a result, a sense of celebration of high art.