War and Peace

Voina i Mir

By In Opera 4 hours 10 min

A colossal work beyond all previous boundaries, Sergei S. Prokofiev's monumental setting of Leo N. Tolstoy's epic novel, War and Peace. The composer and his wife Mira have compressed the plot, set during Napoleon's Russian campaign, into a powerful sequence of scenes in which the love story between Natasha Rostova and Andrei Bolkonsky and the description of the Russian army's fight against the French invasion alternate in rich contrast, and at the same time are closely interwoven. How the arrogance of the old, ossified nobility stands in the way of the happiness of two young people, how a seduction succeeds and a kidnapping fails, how some renounce their love and others fall as heroes – and in all the pomp and circumstance each searches for a companion. All is related by the music in its fullness of splendid themes and touchingly quiet moments. Prokofiev's musical-dramatic masterpiece combines social drama and historical chronicle in its 13 scenes to form an exuberant panorama. The opera will now be performed in Munich for the first time ever.

Russian director mostly relates opera plots in our present, often in seemingly everyday or intimate settings and situations. And always in sets that he designs himself or conceives down to the last detail, just as with all other aspects of the artistic design (costume, makeup, lighting, video). The tumult of main and state actions appears in his productions as if under a microscope. Conflicts are fought out up close and at eye level. As a viewer, you can never take refuge in the perspective of a distanced totality. Instead the characters get close to you in their imperfection, with their mistakes, their sometimes successful, sometimes futile attempts at happiness.

Opera in 13 pictures (1946)

A co-production with the Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona

Composer Sergej S. Prokofjew. Libretto by Sergei S. Prokofiev and Mira A. Prokofyeva after the novel of the same name by Lev N. Tolstoy.

Premiere at 05. March 2023