In Soviet Russia, puppet manipulates you!
St. Ann's Warehouse will house Dmitry Krymov'sOpus No. 7 for a limited run, from January 9 through 19. Presented as two one-acts, the play is a tribute to both the Soviet Jewish victims of Nazi aggression and the artists repressed under Stalin.
The son of and former set designer to Russian director Anatoly Efros (longtime director of the Central Children's Theater and Yuri Lyubimov's replacement at Moscow's Taganka Theater), Krymov spent most of his life as a painter. He returned to the stage in 2002 to develop the "theater of painters," a design-centered approach to performance.
Georgia-born composer Alexander Bakshi provides music for the first part of the play, "Genealogy," which centers on a huge blank wall on which images representing Soviet Jewish life are created through projection, drawing, and animation.
Part Two, "Shostakovich," follows a Charlie Chaplin-eqsue Dmitri Shostakovich (played by tiny actress Anna Sinyakina) as he is simultaneously nurtured and tormented by "Mother Russia" as personified by a seventeen foot tall babushka puppet.
In addition to Sinyakina, the cast of Opus No. 7 includes Maxim Maminov, Mikhail Umanets, Sergey Melkonyan, Arkady Kirichenko, Natalia Gorchakova, Maria Gulik and Varvara Voetskova.
The design-heavy show features work by Vera Martynova (scenic design), Maria Tregubova (scenic design), Andrew Schyukin (scenic movement), Anton Morozov (Scenic movement), Alexey Rasskazchikov (scenic movement), Alexander Shaposhnikov (video), Svyatoslav Zaytsev (video), Irina Bakulina (costumes), Victoria Solovyeva (costumes), Victor Platonov (puppets), Olga Ravvich (lighting), Sergey Alexandrov (sound), Maria Masalskaya (props), and Natalia Urvacheva (props).
Krymov's work was last seen in New York during the 2012 Lincoln Center Festival, when world-famous ballet legend Mikhail Baryshnikov starred as a love-stricken former general in the White Army in In Paris, based on Nobel laureate Ivan Bunin's 1940 novella of the same name.
Zachary Stewart, TheaterMania.com, 11.12.2012