World premiere: Samara Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre
Premiere of this production: 15 Feb 2019
The performance has 1 intermission
Running time: 2 hours
Libretto by Viacheslav Zarenkov and Yury Smekalove
Idea: Viacheslav Zarenkov
Choreographer: Yury Smekalove
Musical Director: Evgeny Khokhlov
Set & Costume Designer: Viacheslav Okunev
Lighting Designer: Irina Vtornikova
Video Designer: Victoria Zlotnikova
Assistant choreographer: Victoria Litvinova
Orchestration: Daniil Pilchen
Sound producing: Vlad Zhukov
Age category 6+
Sometimes people carry to such perfection the mask they have assumed that in due course they actually become the person they seem.
King Julius rules the Kingdom where everyone wears a mask, himself included. He wants to get rid of his mask. He is in dismay. Sarah watches him. Her true face is hidden. Perhaps, Sarah only exists in his imagination.Julius pays no attention to the affairs of the state. His Ministers are worried. Chief Advisor Conor is outraged. Julius is carried away with a girl who dances in the garden. He name is Emma. She doesn’t wear a mask. Julius and Emma observe one another. They are filled by caution and fragility, disbelieve and fascination, joy and fear. Emma inspires Julius.
Conor is worried by the King’s new love. It’s hard to bear the monarch’s recklessness. There may be other reasons as well. Conor’s aim is to dethrone the King and to acquire omnipotence.A conspiracy. Ministers and guards swear loyalty to Conor.
No mask may be just another mask.
At night, Julius is alone in his study. The conspirators enter the King’s rooms. Julius senses the danger. He wants to live without a mask, to change himself and his people. Conor cannot believe it. In his fury he wants to make Julius faceless. The King faces a choice. He flees. The road is hard. He reaches the outskirts of the city and collapses.
Conor ascends to the throne. He wants total control over the people. His Ministers turn the citizens into a faceless mob. Only few resist. Darkness falls over the city.Emma finds Julius. She convinces him to lead the unyielding citizens and regain royal power. The dethroned King liberates the citizens from their masks.Meanwhile Conor and his men revel in power. The Kingdom descends into mayhem.Led by Julius, the citizens enter the castle and liberate Ministers and guards from their masks. Conor seeks refuge in a city tower. Julius finds him and tears his mask off. Seeing the Chief Advisor’s true face, the King cannot believe his eyes.
Julius’s only choice is to wear the mask of omnipotence forever.