opera and theatre works
Stage director and stage designer of contemporary opera productions and experimental opera creations
[work in progress for 2022, opera by Kassandra collective, stage design, stage directing, creation of sound objects]
Cassandra – the woman who articulates what others do not want to or cannot see, whose warnings are neither heard nor believed, who is not understood and taken seriously. That inspired us to explore the phenomenon of resonance as a relationship between performer and audience.
Her story reflects the development of the female image from Ovid to Christa Wolf. This archetype of the character who would be today in a daily struggle for her rights, her acceptance, her equality, has become our initial impulse for an experimental political feminist music theatre piece. However, in dealing with the figure of Cassandra, we address her story as a specifically female experience, and we formed an exclusively female team.
The portrayal of Cassandra is meant to be immediate and intimate: the bodies and voices of the two singers – supported by electronics as well as sounding objects – are the main instruments. The objects are functioning as mutes, voice filters, instruments. For example, porcelain armour is performed with the body movement of the performer. The three parts of the musical theatre function musically as three independent cosms. Their connection is achieved through united symbolic and visual languages as well as a recurring political message.
[2021, opera by Ole Hübner, Jürgen Genuit and Kapitolina Tcvetkova; stage design, stage direction, creation of scenic installation / musical instrument cube]
2m * 2m * 2m cube composed of multiple complex materials chosen not only by their visual and tactile qualities but mainly acoustic and sonic potential. The form unravels into a grand installation that is an instrument for an ensemble, costume, stage, character and space itself at the same time.
Commission of Hanatsu Miroir with support for Lumideco and Impuls festival.
[2019, installation, performance; collaboration as stage director, designer, concept creator]
An interdisciplinary science-art project that believes in transflorism (analogy to transhumanism).
We are translating plants, giving them voice, ability to write and even create images.
1st edition – Kalt Strasbourg prototype
2d edition – Opera of/for plants, Moscow
3d edition – Tree opera (speed dating) plant-opera.com
More about plant opera -> plant-opera.com
The turn of the screw
[scenography and staging concept for “The turn of the screw” by B.Britten; visualized by L.Rowell]
The notion of fear and dread has shifted in our new society post-war, post #metoo, post #blacklivesmatter, post covid19 and facing the truth turns out to be scarier than any mysterious ghostly legend like that of the turn of the screw. The truth that speaks of inequalities, social pressure, abuse and issues of juvenile jurisdiction.
She wonders about the way in which the psychology of children evolves under the pressure of contemporary society and the decisions of adults. How it abuses them, deforms them, irreversibly hurts them and ultimately destroys them. They enter the machine of the system which ends up consuming them completely.
[ 2013, opera by D. Kourliandski and Dimitris Yalamas; stage director, set designer]
Performed by MASM ensemble and N’caged ensemble, installations and light in collaboration with Alexander Letsius.
The public is invited to sit down on the adtual stage in a circle back to back. The turning circle of the stage moves the spectator from scene to scene. If we saw the performance multiple times, each time taking a different part of the circle, we would follow a different story.
The complex machinery of stage with multiple axes of spinning created a feeling of disorientation, antigravity and suspense of the spectator.
The floor is covered with readable through mirror texts and invisible ink that gets exposed through the torches of actors and reveal hidden narrative.
Installations are 5 spaces that the spectator travels through (4 of 5 from left to the right):
Pigmalion is an electromagnetic sculpture that is getting constructed by an actor, but each time close to its completion it would fall completely apart.
Venera is a water-like costume that has the quality of light capturing and optically dispersing.
Narciss is a box that has a varying opacity of elements due to smart glass technology, creating an active space around the actor – it is sometimes a transparent box, sometimes a moving mosaic that blocks parts of his body.
The central object – Asteroid – was constructed of panels layering smart-glass, mirror film, dichroic film etc. that allows to completely change its quality – make opaque, transparent, reflective, infinity mirror box programmed light pendulum etc. The 445-degree mirrors of the “asteroid” object transpose the horizontal arrangement in vertical movement, justifying the performer’s movements on the flow in vertical axes when we see them through the mirror.
[2019, Space K, Strasbourg; performance; set design, video]
Moving screen panels form different shapes and spaces for each part of the performance. On the stage are openly installed the light control, show call and chemical laboratory, running the show live in front of the spectator. Each piece is associated with one Petri dish that is turning to a complex and massive world through numerous live cameras and microscopes.
Collaboration with HANATSU mirror ensemble.
[2015, a musical theatre of objects, OperaLab Berlin, stage director, stage designer]
Anthropologists believe that the decisive step in the evolution of man took place when our ape ancestors began to use tools. At that moment, a new era dawned: the era of material things. But what if we give these things up? And what about music, our beloved form of expression, created by using things as well? What can happen without it? Phantom syndrome of object dependency and acknowledgement of actual relationships with the objects. Based on compositions by Michael Maierhof.
More on the page of the OperaLab Berlin
[2016, opera for childern, Mariinsky theatre, stage director, stage designer]
Opera by Svetlana Nesterova is based on a Ural legend about the magical lady Sinushka giving riches. The production was echoing the social and political situation of governmental corruption in Russia, terroristic attacks during the production period, as well as the structural and bureaucratic and corruption situation inside the Mariinsky theatre structure. Production was forbidden in the way it was staged by the theatre direction before its premiere.
Fish and boar
[2018, opera by Ole Hübner, Kira Malinina and Kapitolina Tcvetkova for 4 non-genderised voices, dancer and child, stage director, stage designer]
Distance as a contemporary plague. Psychological, physical, linguistic, (senti-)mental, temporal gaps. It’s a phenomenon of intervals that keep us apart but paradoxically tie us together, creating volumes in between and relationships.
Distance is like water – an invisible volume separating us, but at the same time binding and embracing. It is crucial and essential to any object, being, space or relative. But, just as a line in Euclidean space, it can’t exist without at least two points. We are three points of many lines – here are our three distances.
[2012, St.Petersbourg, opera; stage directing, set design]
Human Voice was created in a way that allowed it to be performed in varying ‘non-operatic’ spaces, such as rooftops, exhibition spaces, or factories, in order to bring opera to the masses, and connect with the origins of public, current, and modern synthetic art.
Each show was unique for it’s setting. The premiere was performed on the roof of the Saint-Petersburg State Conservatory.
3d mapping / real-time cameras on radio helicopters and cars / 200 meters of paper / 3 kg of paint / orchestra / 1 singer / 3 actors, tonnes of team members, and lots of smiles
Talking of loneliness in the crowd, full privacy transparency this show is an hour-long solo of the performer founding herself one to one with her psychological problems and insecurities in front of a public and musicians.
Live spy cameras, shadow illusions, hallucinations, the story starts as a new white sheet of paper and ends in full saturation and destruction of the illusion world.
[2019, Strasbourg, performance; set design, olfactory objects, concept]
A performance created in collaboration with Hanatsu miroir and 4 Iranian con- temporary composers. A female performer comes as an odd ensemble member and becomes with her body language a speechless soloist, speaking of corporal suppression. The olfactory sense takes part of the narrative: the rainbow-like reflection overlaps with the smell of petrol and suspended objects fall-ing, creating explosions of smells, releasing symbolic Iranian olfactory references: spices, flowers, incenses, strengthened by heat of projectors.
She colours herself in red of saffron – scent of freedom and colour of courage.
[2018, interactive performance, IIUTF 21th Iran International University Theatre Festival, Tehran, IRAN; stage design, performer]
Following a 10-day workshop on attitudes and interactions of bodies in public space, we presented a performance bringing together all the participants. Hidden among the spectators, the performers allowed by their presence and actions to further blur the boundaries between public and private inducing or soliciting the reaction or even the participation of the spectators.
For theatre company Des châteaux en l’air.
Nothing lasts forever
[2019, Stuttgart; performance/installation; director, set designer]
Organically mixing with urban space the common object creates uncommon magic. Metaphors and allusions coming in our head from various colours, shapes, qualities that ordinary foam takes are appearing as fast as vanishing/morphing to a new state.
Collaboration with Stuttgart Figurentheater Studiengang, Laura Boser.