Mussorgsky's hero is the crowd. Neither guilt-racked Boris (Alexander Feklistov), a usurper who has attained the throne through murder, nor his con-artist rival, Grigory (Evgeny Mironov), a runaway monk who claims to be the murdered Czarevich Dmitri, was heroic enough to suit the composer. To Pushkin, they represent contrasting versions of the crime-fueled hunger for power. Mussorgsky notoriously resisted composing the "Polish act," in which the fake Dmitri allies himself with a Polish leader's daughter, Marina Mnishek (Irina Grineva). Pushkin, in contrast, puts this scene at the core of his work: Marina extorts "Dmitri" 's true identity from him and then eggs him on to czardom anyway. Donnellan's production, loud and often crudely showy in its playing, coarsened the edges of this powerful work, but never diminished its grandeur.

Proto-Chekhov: Trilogia della Villeggiatura
Stephanie Berger
Proto-Chekhov: Trilogia della Villeggiatura


Trilogia della Villeggiatura
By Carlo Goldoni
Rose Hall, Lincoln Center (Closed)

Boris Godunov
By Alexander Pushkin
Park Avenue Armory (Closed)

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