Rising Alternative

Salzburg Festival

Eugene Onegin

Pyotr Illyich Tchaikovsky

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Recorded at the Salzburg Festival, this production of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin features an excellent, young cast headed by Peter Mattei as the titular playboy, and the Vienna Philharmonic conducted by maestro Daniel Barenboim. This intimate production mines the depths of expression and charisma inherent in the drama.

The plot of Eugene Onegin is quickly told: on a Russian country estate, awkward, inexperienced young Tatyana is seized by a sudden passion for the handsome, blasé new neighbor Eugene Onegin. She writes him a love letter, but he makes it clear to her that he is not interested. Later, Tatyana‘s sister flirts with Onegin, her fiancé challenges him to a duel and is killed by Onegin. Years later, Onegin returns, finds that Tatyana has married an aged prince, and tries to win her back but fails…

Tchaikovsky called his opera a sequence of “lyric scenes.” Its structure prefigures narrative techniques that later came into use in cinema: abrupt cuts and chronological leaps, intimate close-ups, atmospheric interjections… Bearing this practically cinematic structure in mind, director Andrea Breth has produced an intimate chamber play that mines the depths of veracity, precision and charisma of her singer-actors.


ConductorDaniel Barenboim

DirectorAndrea Breth

CastPeter Mattei | Anna Samuil Ekaterina Gubanova | Joseph Kaiser

Number of actsOpera in 3 acts

Total running time2 hours 36 min

Running time by actAct 1: 73 minutes; Act 2: 42 minutes; Act 3: 42 minutes

Sung inRussian

SubtitlesEnglish | Spanish | French | German

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