This year, the Obraztsova International Classical Music Festival “Carmen” invites its guests in high summer. July 19 – 22, Satka turned into the space for music, painting, theatre, cinema to merge into harmonious fusion... The debut summer season was full of surprises, and each of them was enthusiastically met by thankful spectators.

Trip to the Backstage

The festival opening started with the photo exhibition "Theatres, Roles, Spectators"..., devoted to the 80th anniversary of E. V. Obraztsova. Interactive exhibition helped festival guests immerse in the world of art that surrounded the great singer. The brilliant career, unexpected world of the backstage, stages of the world leading theatres – all these and many more details were shown in 16 info tablets. The technology flavor could also be sensed: spectators could use smartphones and QR codes to see the fragments of the performances Elena Obraztsova played in and hear her fascinating voice.

– In the interview, one of the Bolshoi Theatre colleagues of Elena Vasilievna Obraztsova rightfully mentioned: “All theatres of the world were not enough to express her creativity”. The theatre was everything for her. Elena Vasilievna used to tell that almost no dreams came true in life, but everything was possible in theatre, – Natalia Vodoleeva, the guide and art expert, told us.

In one of the festival evenings, the spectators could see the Carmen that became Elena Obraztsova’s visit card. The event guests were demonstrated My Carmen opera film (1977) starring Elena Obraztsova and Vladimir Atlantov. Extracts from the original novella by Prosper Merime and the most famous arias from the same-name opera by Georges Bizet were performed in the chamber teledrama.

Melody under the Stars

Another gem of the summer evening of the Obraztsova International Classical Music Festival “Carmen” was the open-air firework concert. And another surprise: the festival providers included not only classical music masterpieces in the “musical menu”. The stage next to Magnezit Cultural Center hosted the melodies from favorite films and even rock compositions loved by everybody.

But unusual neighborhood of Tsoy with Bizet, or Strauss with Piazzolla did not embarrass anybody. Actors of the symphonic orchestra of the Glinka’s Chelyabinsk State Academic Opera and Ballet conducted by Alexander Matushkin, director, prize Winner of the All-Russian contest, and the solo performers, prize winners of international contests – Elena Rotkina and Pavel Chikanovsky – brilliantly created an amazing musical lorelei. And no doubt the listeners highly appreciated it.

– For us, musicians, such concert is professionally interesting. The sound in the hall is quite different from that outdoors. We have got the most positive impressions, and the audience, as they say now, “went wild”, – director Alexander Matushkin says. – Our solo performers Elena Rotkina and Pavel Chikanovsky really lighted up a stage! Satka people welcomed them with delight, though the concert repertoire was somewhat unusual for us.

Remembering Tchaikovsky

This year, many works of Pyotr Tchaikovsky have been performed in the Obraztsova International Classical Music Festival “Carmen”. And it is not accidentally:  Elena Obraztsova really loved creativity of the great Russian composer. She repeatedly performed his Russian romantic songs, opera arias inevitably causing delight of the Russian and foreign audience.

And in the gala concert of the festival, the listeners immersed in the fascinating world of  Tchaikovsky music again. In the first part of the concert, leading singers Elena Rotkina and Pavel Chikanovsky, and the symphonic orchestra of the Glinka’s Chelyabinsk State Academic Opera and Ballet performed arias from the operas of Iolanta, Eugene Onegin, The Queen of Spades. Tatyana Bikmuhametova, a Satka resident, student of the Russian University of Theatre Arts, and holder of the Magnezit Group fellowship also sang at the stage of Magnezit Cultural Center. She performed arioso of Natasha from Oprichnik opera and "Whether day dawns" romantic song.

In the second part of the Gala Concert, the guests listened to Piano Concerto No. 1 by maestro Yuri Rozum. The People’s Artist of Russia had already pleased Satka citizens with his performance excellence, but it was the first time he performed at the Obraztsova International Classical Music Festival “Carmen”.

— It’s not without reason that the name of Elena Obraztsova sounds in Satka. It is the town, where people highly appreciate real art, their history, great actors of the country, I’ve got used that Satka presents amazing surprises in all respects: music, nature, architecture. I am glad that the sequence of events drove me to the town I had not suspected of a while back, — Yuri Rozum confessed.

That day, the broadcast of the gala concert could be watched in Magnezit Cultural Center square. In the end of the concert, Sergey Korostelev, president of Magnezit Group, awarded Yuri Rozum and conductor of the symphonic orchestra of the Glinka’s Chelyabinsk State Academic Opera and Ballet with commemorative tokens of the Obraztsova Third International Classical Music Festival “Carmen”.

Music and…

Love for art is instilled since childhood. And the Obraztsova International Classical Music Festival “Carmen” became an unusual venue, where even the youngest spectators could learn more about music and its peculiar metamorphoses.

Who of us didn’t like to sing melodies from the Soviet and Russian cartoons? In the Obraztsova International Classical Music Festival “Carmen”, Satka dwellers remembered the songs while attending the open-air musical film theatre. But it was just the beginning: it will just suffice to mention the art picnic that invited thousands of families during the last day of the festival!

During the picnic of music and art, adults and children could attend multiple interactive areas. “Music and Technology” site presented a real fruit orchestra. Playtronica, Moscow team, told the children how to listen to rhythm, and the first-time musicians were willing to play their fruit and vegetables in sync with the melody.

Those, who needed more than fruit music experiments, went to the “Music and Rhythm” site. A duet from Yekaterinburg, Guys Sub Spoons, excited the audience by playing wooden spoons and even plastic tubes. It impressed both children and adults.

In the world of art, there is always room for discoveries. To see why, it was enough to visit “Music and Painting” and “Music and Poetry” sites. Here, true-life magic was happening to the strains of songs performed by Yuri Rozum, People’s Artist of Russia, Tatyana Bikmuhametova, a student of the Russian University of Theatre Arts, and solo performers of the best Moscow and European opera theatres. Accompanied by music, one could recite their favorite poems impromptu in the open mike or create a still life under the supervision of the Moscow artist Aleksandr Shilov.

Lovers of active games were especially welcome in the “Music and Sport” site. To play the guitar, synthesizer or drums, for example, children had to spin the pedals! And, of course, the picnic participants paid much attention to the giant floor piano. And the fans of intellectual battles could visit “Music and History” site: it enjoyed more than 700 people!

The festival guests also granted warm welcome to the programme of TenorS of the ХХI Century art project. Soloists of the reputable Moscow and European opera theatres performed children songs that enjoyed everybody’s love.

The bright finale of the third day of the Obraztsova International Classical Music Festival “Carmen” was the brilliant performance of Proletarian Tango retro orchestra. Anna Didenko, a leading performer of the orchestra, the best voice of Obraztsova’s International Music Academy, performed the hits in the modern adaptation well liked by Satka people. The guests gave standing ovation to the performers and were very unwilling to let them leave the stage.

Bright, cheerful, filled with the carefree summer mood – this is what the Obraztsova Third International Classical Music Festival “Carmen” turned out to be. Representatives of the event organizer – Sobranie Fund – confess: debut of the summer seasons of Carmen was a success. And it means that Satka will have another cultural milestone to attract new guests and participants.

Photo by Anna Filippova