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Lady Macbeth von Mzensk

Lady Macbeth von Mzensk

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Lady Macbeth von Mzensk - Dimitrij Schostakowitsch

A blistering attack, a punch in the gut, an opera that leaves an indelible brand on the imagination… Shostakovich wrote his masterpiece Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District, when he was barely 30 years old, a work that takes opera to new, intense and erotic heights. The heroine’s unbearable loneliness, suffocating social conventions and love, burning with explicit sexuality, combine in a mixture of incendiary lyricism and excruciating irony. And what of Shostakovich’s orchestra? A smouldering volcano. And the characters? They range from peasants to popes, from criminals to corrupt policemen, whose clutches gradually ensnare and crush the fragile Katerina, who is transformed with each scene into the bloody Lady Macbeth. When Stalin first heard Shostakovich’s work in the 1930s, he walked out before the final scene. The following morning an anonymous article in Pravda condemned the opera as "chaos instead of music". Eighty years later, the modernism and brute strength of Lady Macbeth remain intact and attack the ear with the same aggressive power.

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