Life on a Tatar farm in two parts and four acts, based on the eponymous novel
And Quiet Flows the Don is the first of two productions made by Grigory Kozlov and the St. Petersburg Masterskaya Theatre about the Russian Civil War, a time of great changes. The second production, Days of the Turbins, premiered on November 1st, 2013.
The main subject of And Quiet Flows the Don are the lives of simple but extraordinary people and a great and tragic love story that unfolds against a backdrop of revolution, world and civil wars and social upheaval.
On a Tatar farm lives the large and happy Melekhov family. Grigory Melekhov becomes interested in his neighbor Aksinya, the wife of Stepan Astakhov. In an effort to bring their son to his senses, his parents have him marry another almost by force. Grigory very soon realizes that he can’t live with his wife and leaves home, breaking his family ties. And not long thereafter Grigory joins the army. The nascent World War and the tragic events that follow it radically change the lives of every character in And Quiet Flows the Don without exception. The centuries-old way of life of Russian Cossacks is destroyed, seemingly strong family bonds are broken and ideological differences put close relatives on different sides of the barricades…
The lyrical and epic foundations of the production are closely intertwined. Grigory Melekhov’s personal tragedy correlates with the discordant world order, in which the new ways are incompatible with his morals. Melekhov’s journey is one of acquisition and loss, of mistakes and defeats, and it is one that the Russian people as a whole underwent in the beginning of the last century.
...this is a serious event, genuine "large-scale dramatic theatre"
Sholokhov's And Quiet Flows the Don now, and in St. Petersburg – that fantastic northern city – to boot, and with young actors just past the age of 20? It’s some sort of mysterious feat, and yet it took place. I have things to compare it to – I saw the best productions of Tovstonogov, Goncharov, Fomenko and Dodin, and I can bear witness that this new And Quiet Flows the Don comes close to reaching similar heights…
– Tatyana Moskvina/Argumenty Nedeli. May 30th, 2013.
It’s as if the director decided to express all the Cossack and swashbuckling aspects that lie in the unconscious of every Russian. The show abounds with songs, dances and scenes from Cossack life. And all while humor time and gain gives way to real drama and tragedy.
Elena Dobryakova/Culture of the Russian Federation. May 20th, 2013.
Winner of a special award at the annual St. Petersburg Zolotoi Sofit ceremony “for pedagogical mastery and a contemporary theatrical reading of classic prose by third-year students at the St. Petersburg State Theatre Arts Academy.”
Grand-Prix at the V Zolotoi Vityaz Slavic Forum of Arts (Anton Momot, Sofya Karabulina and Eseniya Rayevskaya).
The show has participated in the Golden Mask (Moscow), Proryv (St. Petersburg) and Baltic House (St. Petersburg) festivals.
The premiere took place on May 18th, 2013.
Duration: 8 hours with three intermissions. Recommended for audiences aged 16 and up.
Director: Grigory Kozlov
Production and Costume Designer: Mikhail Barkhin
Light: Alexandr Ryazantsev, Ekaterina Marina
Sound: Marina Vasenina, Ekaterina Nikolaeva
Video: Alexandr Malyshev, Fyodor Sokolov
Musical Director: Vyacheslav Shulin
Stage Manager: Vera Lachinova