Making its Royal Opera debut!
The final work of composer and librettist Leos Janacek, this dark and atmospheric opera is based on the semi-autobiographical novel by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, describing his life in a Siberian gulag. Marking its premiere at the Royal Opera House, this production is helmed by the talented Polish director Krzysztof Warlikowski, the creator and artistic director of Nowy Teatr (New Theatre) in Warsaw. This opera has been updated to take place in modern times, allowing audiences to empathise with the inmates from a contemporary perspective.
Arguably Janecek's biggest masterpiece, his operatic treatment of Dostoyevsky's work combines the harsh reality of life in a gulag with compassion as the inmates try to make sense of humanity's difficult truths. Completed just before his death in 1928, the opera wasn't performed until 1930 and marked a departure from his previous works in that the ensemble cast remains the focus of the drama, rather than one or two main characters.