"Masquerade" of Rimas Tuminas: deja vu in Vakhtangov

Publication date: 21 January 2010

Author: Karina Ivashko

Issue: Голос России

Moscow theatergoers are in expectation of today’s premiere: the Vakhtangov Theatre invites the public to the "Masquerade" directed by Rimas Tuminas.
There are several reasons for the great interest to the new production. First of all – it is about a very famous Vakhtangov Theater, which after Rimas Tuminas came there as an Artistic director has become again one of the most popular theatres in Moscow. After having headed the company in 2007, the outstanding Lithuanian director in his repertoire policy devotes considerable attention to the Russian classics. His reading of "Uncle Vanya" by A.Chekhov, presented in this season, has created a furor in the theater world and has become a huge success with the public. This time Tuminas brings on stage the heroes of the drama written by Mikhail Lermontov, "Masquerade".
The main motive of the Lermontov’ play - a costumed party with a love affair in its centre- is in itself attractive to the Vakhtangov Theater, which stylistics is based on the concept of "theater as a holiday". It is no mere chance that a few years ago there was an idea of including into the playbill of the theatre of a Lithuanian performance from Vilnius, giving the Vakhtangov stage to the Lithuanian touring company once in a while. But things turned out differently. Rimas Tuminas has chosen the copyright renewal of the performance of performed by the Vakhtangov actors. He was pretty confident that, due to the peculiarities of the theatre school, and, above all, the individuality of each actor, the performance will turn out to be a completely different "Masquerade." The main part of Arbenina is played by Evgeny Knyazev. Each new role, even for such a master is very exciting, especially when it comes to work with a courageous experimenter Rimas Tuminas.
Well, a famous misanthrope Rimas Tuminas is still looking at the heroes with a sad and mocking smile. And while the first "Masquerade" of Tuminas is called the most captivating performance of the end of the last century, the "take-two", born within the walls of the Vakhtangov Theater, will probably "shoot" and will not be drowned in the swift whirl of time and of its new “masquerades”.