Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky is celebrated for his operas as well as his symphonies, concertos and ballets scores. He is perhaps best loved for his ballet music which includes the enduring favourites – Swan Lake and The Nutcracker. Among the eleven operas composed by Tchaikovsky, Eugene Onegin is arguably the most popular today and is frequently performed in the great opera houses of the world. The Royal Opera House Muscat presented Tchaikovsky’s great lyric opera, Eugene Onegin on Thursday and Saturday. This beautiful lyric opera in the Romantic tradition with unforgettable melodies and heart-rending drama mesmerised every opera lover who was present at the ROHM.
The story is based on a novel in verse by the famous Russian poet, playwright and novelist, Alexander Pushkin. The joyous beauties of nature in the Russian countryside where Pushkin grew up, along with an excellent family library and vivid literary conversation in the aristocratic circles of the day were elements in forging the soul of a sensitive young poet. He wrote a series of narrative poems, featuring exotic settings and tragic romantic encounters. Set within the context of Russian social and intellectual life in the 1820s, the story speaks not only of the passion and purity of the soul, but also of betrayal in friendship and the vagaries of love. A dazzlingly expressive novel, Eugene Onegin is considered the crowning achievement of Pushkin’s early verse and has gained more renown through Tchaikovsky’s opera. (Photos by Khalid Al Busaidi)