Mussorgsky’s “Boris Godunov” at SF Symphony – June 14, 15 and 17


by Sean Martinfield | See: The Pink Section

For more than twenty seasons, Michael Tilson Thomas and the SFS have been at the forefront in creating original staging for works of the orchestral and operatic repertory in a symphonic setting. From The Flying Dutchman, Peter Grimes, and Peer Gynt to West Side Story and On The Town, MTT continues to explore new ways to provide context for core masterworks with visionary staging, lighting, set design, and imagery.

Michael Tilson Thomas

Michael Tilson Thomas

 On June 14, 15, and 17, MTT and the SFS continue this innovative approach, performing Mussorgsky’s epic political drama Boris Godunov in the original Russian, in a semi-staged production conceived by MTT.

“My goal with each semi-staged production, whether opera, musical theater, or symphonic work, is to use lighting, costumes, projections, and stage direction to further illuminate the music and story so that the audience comes away with a deeper and more immersive concert experience,” explains Michael Tilson Thomas. “I’m looking forward to this production which will showcase the incredible artistry of the San Francisco Symphony, our esteemed soloists, and our remarkable design team and stage crew.”

Stanislav Trofimov – Eliza Bonet – Yevgeny Akimov

Stanislav Trofimov – Eliza Bonet – Yevgeny Akimov

The accomplished Eastern European cast assembled for Boris Godunov includes bass Stanislav Trofimov (Boris Godunov), tenor Yevgeny Akimov (Prince Shuisky), tenor Sergei Skorokhodov (Grigory), bass Vyacheslav Pochapsky (Varlaam), bass Maxim Kuzmin-Karavaev (Pimen), baritone Aleksey Bogdanov (Andrei Shchelkalov), and tenor Stanislav Mostovoy (Holy Fool), in addition to bass-baritone Philip Skinner (Nikitich), soprano Jennifer Zetlan (Xenia), tenor Ben Jones (Missail), mezzo-soprano Silvie Jensen (Nurse), mezzo-soprano Catherine Cook (Innkeeper), bass Chung-Wai Soong (Mityukha), tenor Elliott Encarnación (Boyar in Attendance), baritone Jonathan Thomas (Lavitsky), and baritone Matthew Peterson (Chernikovsky).

Jennifer Zetlan – Stanislav Mostovoy – Catherine Cook

Jennifer Zetlan – Stanislav Mostovoy – Catherine Cook

The performances also feature the San Francisco Symphony Chorus, directed by Ragnar Bohlin, and the Pacific Boychoir, directed by Marcia Roy. The production is directed by James Darrah, with lighting design by Pablo Santiago, projection design by Adam Larsen, and scenic & costume design by MacMoc Designs, Inc. This production will be performed using Mussorgsky’s original 1869 version.

Boris Godunov (1551–1605) and Modest Mussorgsky (1839–1881)

Boris Godunov (1551–1605) and Modest Mussorgsky (1839–1881)

Performances take place at Davies Symphony Hall, 201 Van Ness Avenue in San Francisco. Tickets are available at: sfsymphony.org, by phone at 415-864-6000, and at the Davies Symphony Hall Box Office, on Grove Street between Van Ness Avenue and Franklin Street in San Francisco.

Click here for complete cast list and to order tickets online: Boris Godunov

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