25th Anniversary Production
The 77th National Arts Festival by Agency for Cultural Affairs presents
Supported by the Agency for Cultural Affairs Government of Japan in the fiscal 2022
Music by Modest MUSSORGSKY
Opera in 4 Acts with a Prologue
Sung in Russian with English and Japanese surtitles
15 Nov - 26 Nov, 2022 ( 5 Performances )
Running time is approx. 3 hours and 10 mins including intervals.
Co-production with Polish National Opera
Boris Godunov is our latest Russian opera, following on from Eugene Onegin, Le Rossignol and Iolanta. It is the only opera completed by Modest MUSSORGSKY of the Mighty Five (the Russian Five). Conceived as a co-production with the Polish National Opera, this new production will be directed by Mariusz TRELIŃSKI, the Artistic Director of the Polish National Opera.
This opera is based on a play by Aleksandr PUSHKIN about the real-life Boris Godunov, Russian regent during the Time of Troubles in the late 16th century, from his coronation to his death. This sombre tragedy portrays the cries of the masses, the scheming of those in power and the anguish of Boris himself. The music is richly modern, and replete with innovative harmonies based on Russian folk songs and traditional Russian Orthodox church music, making it a pinnacle of Russian national music.
Director Mariusz TRELIŃSKI comes from a background in film directing and has distinguished himself for bringing out the essential beauty of music with a contemporary interpretation and aesthetic. He has worked with ONO Kazushi before, having won the International Opera Award for Best Opera Director for The Fiery Angel in Festival d'Aix-en-Provence, highly acclaimed worldwide. With the excellent cast, the drama unfolds around the demise of Boris Godunov, driven into a corner by his own actions in assassinating Tsarevich Dmitry. This production combines the 1869 Original Version and the 1872 Revised Version of the opera.
* Please note that there might be changes depending on the Covid-19 situation.
[Covid-19] Our Prevention Plan and Request to Our Patrons
The performances will be taking place based on the policies of the Japanese government and the Tokyo Metropolitan government, along with the guideline for the prevention of the spread of COVID-19 infection by the Association of Public Theatres and Halls in Japan.
Please read this page before visiting the theatre.
NEWS & FEATURES
2022/2023 Season Opera at the New National Theatre, Tokyo
Cast change: Boris Godunov (15 -26 November)
Shortly before Godunov's coronation. Instead of attending official events, Godunov spends his time at the bed of his sick, paralyzed son, Fyodor. The terrified mind of the ruler imposes a filter of subjective visions on objective events. In official messages to the people gathered outside the palace, the Staff explains the ruler's temporary indisposition.
Before accepting the crown Godunov meets with hierarchs of the Uniate Church. Pimen, the highest hierarch, is a staunch opponent of the ruler. Both play a diplomatic courtesy, Godunov forces himself and kisses Pimen's ring.
Godunov's speech during the coronation captivates the people. Boris with his reign sincerely hopes to end the period of anarchy and chaos in which the country was plunged.
Six years later. Pimen makes one of his adepts, Grigory, believe that he is the reincarnation of Tsarevich, who was murdered by the ruling tsar. Grigory becomes the Pretender.
On his way to Godunov, the Pretender and two monks stop at a provincial inn. Entry of a brutal squad of special forces looking for the Pretender ends in a slaughter. Monks murder the patrol in cold blood.
Godunov is exhausted after years of rule. Seeing his daughter in mourning for her fiancé, he feels that not only he has lost, but his entire family too. Fyodor, boasting about his first steps on crutches, spreads a vision of how he will rule in the future. Godunov, hiding his tears, nods in agreement with his son's illusions.
One of Godunov's close associates, Shuysky, senses that he can profit politically from the tsar's weakness. He manipulates Godunov. They recall events in Uglich. It occurs to him what he has done. He has a vision of an angelic figure of the dead Tsarevich in shining armor, resembling the Pretender. Is the Pretender, heading for the palace with his growing army, an angel of vengeance?
The rebellious parliamentarians believe the Pretender’s propaganda. Parliament, in euphoria, turns against Godunov.
Godunov has another nightmare. Murdered children from Uglich surround him. Terrified Godunov sees his son Fyodor walking on crutches. The sick child looks at him with hatred and reproach. He accuses him of the crime.
In reality, Fyodor has a high fever and is delirious. Fyodor continues Yurodivy’s accusation, saying that Godunov butchered Tsarevich. Listening to this, his father holds his hand and cries.
The parliamentarians change their minds and are unable to reconcile. Situation changes when Godunov appears. Shadow of a man on the verge of madness, drained by the guilt. Shuysky mocks him in front of everyone. When Pimen, who is Godunov's greatest enemy, enters, the hall fills with anxiety.
He speaks of a specter of the murdered Tsarevich, which, like a relic, heals people. He provokes Godunov, who confesses his crimes in a fit of madness. The Pretender enters the room with an army of monks. The parliamentarians panic.
Godunov tells his son of his impending death and apologizes to him. He comforts Fyodor that he will soon be the ruler. We hear the sound of a bell. Pretender’s monks come for Godunov.
A sequence of collective execution. On the floor above, we watch The Pretender, who proclaims himself the new tsar.
CREATIVE TEAM & CAST
Conductor: ONO Kazushi
Production: Mariusz TRELIŃSKI
Set Design: Boris KUDLIČKA
Costume Design: Wojciech DZIEDZIC
Lighting Design: Marc HEINZ
Video Design: Bartek MACIAS
Dramaturg: Marcin CECKO
Choreographer: Maćko PRUSAK
Hair and Make-up Design: Waldemar POKROMSKI
Boris Godunov: Guido JENTJENS
Fyodor (Feodor): KOIZUMI Eiko
Kseniya (Xenia): KUSHIMA Kanae
Kseniya’s nurse: KANEKO Mika
Prince Vasiliy Shuysky: Arnold BEZUYEN
Andrey Shchelkalov: AKITANI Naoyuki
Pimen: Goderdzi JANELIDZE
The Pretender under the name Grigory: KUDO Kazuma
Varlaam: KONO Teppei
Misail: AOCHI Hideyuki
The Innkeeper: SHIMIZU Kasumi
The Yuródivïy: SHIMIZU Tetsutaro
Nikitich, a police officer (Hauptmann): KOMADA Toshiaki
Mityukha: OTSUKA Hiroaki
The Boyar in attendance (Leibbojar): HAMAMATSU Takayuki
Chorus: New National Theatre Chorus
Orchestra: Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra
- CREATIVE TEAM
Guido JENTJENSPrince Vasiliy Shuysky
Goderdzi JANELIDZEThe Pretender under the name Grigory
KONO TeppeiThe Yuródivïy
Booking Opens: Sat, 3 Sep 2022, 10:00am
*The tickets will be sold for all seats as normal (except the seats in rows 1-2 on the 1st Floor).
Booking Z seats (Day tickets) 1,650 yen
- You are able to purchase Z seat tickets online from 10:00 am. Click "BUY TICKETS" next to "Z" under each performance information.
- There is a handling charge of ¥330 (incl. tax).
- Only when seats allocated as Z seat are still available 2 hours before the show starts, you are able to purchase these tickets at the Box Office of the theatre.
- Note that all Z seats are on a first come, first served basis and will come with restricted views.
Under 15s discounts and Z seats (Day Tickets) are available online. Other types of discount tickets are not available online. Please inquire at the Box Office or by telephone.
*Please note that further changes or cancellations may be required as the coronavirus situation develops or to comply with requests from the Government.
- For Seat D of Opera performances, maximum of 2 tickets per person on the first day of ticket sale.
- No admittance to pre-school children. Each child older than this age requires a ticket for entry, even when accompanied by a parent or guardian.
- Tickets may not be changed or refunded except following conditions.
- When the performance is cancelled.
- In case you correspond to the conditions as mentioned on this page
- If you choose not to attend the performance due to prevent infection.
Please be sure to call the New National Theatre, Tokyo Box Office in advance.
At that point, we will tell you the Refund method.
- A special discount price is available for disabled guests. Please inquire at the Box Office for details.
- Users of wheelchairs are requested to contact the Box Office.
- Please note that cast or programme change may be required depending on the situation.