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Tatyana - a world class performance in Figueira da Foz for only €5

I was lucky enough to have the oppertunity to be able to see the amazing show Tatyana, choreographed by one of Brazils most recognised contempory dance choreographers Deborah Colker. Pioneering using the term of "movement director" she has directed and created choreography for many various theatre shows from theatre plays to cirque de solei.

Colker is famous for playing with gerometic forms and in this particular show," Tatyana", a giant wooden mobile structure appears like a tree with curving ramps which is clevery used by the dancers  to set the scenes. The characters Onegin, Lensky, Olga and Tatyana are danced between 1 to 8 dancers at the same time without distracting the audience from the story and the intensity between the characters. The music varies from classical, contempory and has various samba influences and is very cleverly put toghether in sections of the show. There is also a narrator  that portraits  a Puskin figure that is shared with Colker herself taking on short solo parts 2 times in the show.

The show is based on a novel by Alexandre Pushkin, a story seen as one of Russias Classic master peices from the 19th century. Music originally written by Tchaikovsky was also used in the show.


Plot: In the 1820s, Eugene Onegin is a bored  whose life consists of balls, concerts, parties and nothing more. One day he inherits a landed estate from his uncle. When he moves to the country, he strikes up a friendship with his neighbor, a starry-eyed young poet named Vladimir Lensky. One day, Lensky takes Onegin to dine with the family of his fiancée, the sociable but rather thoughtless Olga Larina. At this meeting he also catches a glimpse of Olga's sister Tatyana. A quiet, precocious romantic and the exact opposite of Olga, Tatyana becomes intensely drawn to Onegin. Soon after, she bares her soul to Onegin in a letter professing her love. Contrary to her expectations, Onegin does not write back. When they meet in person, he rejects her advances politely but dismissively and condescendingly. 

Later, Lensky mischievously invites Onegin to Tatyana's name day celebration promising a small gathering with just Tatyana, her sister, and her parents. When Onegin arrives, he finds instead a boisterous country ball, a rural parody of and contrast to the society balls of St. Petersburg he has grown tired of. Onegin is irritated with the guests who gossip about him and Tatyana, and with Lensky for persuading him to come. He decides to avenge himself by dancing and flirting with Olga. Olga is insensitive to her fiancé and apparently attracted to Onegin. Earnest and inexperienced, Lensky is wounded to the core and challenges Onegin to fight a duel; Onegin reluctantly accepts, feeling compelled by social convention. During the duel, Onegin unwillingly kills Lensky. Afterwards, he quits his country estate, traveling abroad to deaden his feelings of remorse.

Several years pass, and  Onegin has come to attend the most prominent balls and interact with the leaders of old Russian society. He sees a most beautiful woman, who captures the attention of all and is central to society's whirl, and he realizes that it is the same Tatyana whose love he had once turned away. Now she is married to an aged prince. Upon seeing Tatyana again, he becomes obsessed with winning her affection, despite the fact that she is married. However, his attempts are rebuffed. He writes her several letters, but receives no reply. Eventually Onegin manages to see Tatyana and presents to her the opportunity to renew their past love. days when they might have been happy, but that time has passed. Onegin repeats his love for her. Faltering for a moment, she admits that she still love.

I have been a fan of Deborahs work since it was introduced to me a few years ago but i was truly impressed by Tatyana. A rather heavy story became an easy watched spectacle, dynamic and interesting, sensual and erotic at times filled with atletic beautiful choreograpy performed by superb dancers.

For anyone who has time tomorrow sunday the 28/4 at 17.00h please find your way to CAE to see this unforgetable show. Tickets go for €5