The Arty Semite

Manipulating Shostakovich

By Gwen Orel

Courtesy Dmitry Krimov

A wall comes to life. Arms appear in what had seemed like empty black suits hanging on them. The seven actors in the company, in evening dress, whom we’ve seen singing, playing with pieces of paper, join hands with the arms. Together the actors and the limbs on the wall do a kind of Hora. Later, a 17-foot high puppet of a babushka embraces, and menaces, a little clown. The clown is composer Dmitry Shostakovich. It’s like something from Dr. Seuss. It’s like a dream.

Though there are words in Dmitry Krymov’s “Opus No. 7,” both in the first part, titled “Genealogy,” and in the second act titled “Shostakovich,” much of the work’s punch lands through other kinds of theatrical language. Even the title evokes a piece of classical music, and the abstraction of painting.

The number 7 also refers to the seven members of the cast: Maxim Maminov, Mikhail Umanets, Sergey Melkonyan, Arkady Krichenko, Natalia Gorchakova, Maria Gulik and Varvara Voetskova. Krymov said in an email that it is also his favorite number. It is also Krymov’s seventh work. Another notable 7 is that Shostakovich’s seventh symphony was about war, Krymove pointed out.

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Shostakovich, Dmitry Krymov, Charlie Chaplin

Mikhail Baryshnikov in Tel Aviv

By Michael Handelzalts

Crossposted from Haaretz

There are two excuses to see the play “In Paris,” which is playing this week at Tel Aviv’s Suzanne Dellal Center as part of a world tour. The first is a lovely story by Ivan Bunin about a missed opportunity. A “white” general who is living out his disappointment with life in Paris while writing the history of his wars meets a young Russian waitress, a fellow-emigre, experiences a late-in-life love affair, and dies a mundane death. A subject for a short story, as Trigorin noted to himself in Anton Chekhov’s “The Seagull.”

Alon Ron
Mikhail Baryshnikov taking photos.

The second is Mikhail Baryshnikov, a great dancer and charismatic man, who at this stage in his career and his life, when he has danced it all and won all due praise, can do anything.

For both of these excuses the play has a single justification: the creative imagination of Dmitry Krymov. His theater opens on an exposed stage, revealing all the tricks of the trade. By means of large cardboard cutouts on which sophisticated and precise projections are displayed, a revolving stage, and a group of five actors — singers and one Baryshnikov, aided by music, movement, and lighting, he creates a world full of imagination, in which even the translated subtitles constitute an aesthetic element.

Read more at Haaretz.com

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Mikhail Baryshnikov, Theater, Michael Handelzalts, In Paris, Haaretz, Dmitry Krymov




Find us on Facebook!
  • Happy birthday William Shakespeare! Turns out, the Bard knew quite a bit about Jews.
  • Would you get to know racists on a first-name basis if you thought it might help you prevent them from going on rampages, like the recent shooting in Kansas City?
  • "You wouldn’t send someone for a math test without teaching them math." Why is sex ed still so taboo among religious Jews?
  • Russia's playing the "Jew card"...again.
  • "Israel should deal with this discrimination against Americans on its own merits... not simply as a bargaining chip for easy entry to the U.S." Do you agree?
  • For Moroccan Jews, the end of Passover means Mimouna. Terbhou ou Tse'dou! (good luck) How do you celebrate?
  • Calling all Marx Brothers fans!
  • What's it like to run the Palestine International Marathon as a Jew?
  • Does Israel have a racism problem?
  • This 007 hates guns, drives a Prius, and oh yeah — goes to shul with Scarlett Johansson's dad.
  • Meet Alvin Wong. He's the happiest man in America — and an observant Jew. The key to happiness? "Humility."
  • "My first bra was a training bra, a sports bra that gave the illusion of a flat chest."
  • "If the people of Rwanda can heal their broken hearts and accept the Other as human, so can we."
  • Aribert Heim, the "Butcher of Mauthausen," died a free man. How did he escape justice?
  • This guy skipped out on seder at his mom's and won a $1 million in a poker tournament. Worth it?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.