Dreams of Rainis

Friday, May 22, 19:00
National Theatre, Kronvalda bulvāris 2
Duration: 1h45
In Latvian with English translation

Author and director Kirill Serebrennikov
Dramaturg Ieva Struka
Set design and costumes: Kirill Serebrennikov
Choreographer: Evgeny Kulagin
Music: Jēkabs Nīmanis
Conductor: Artūrs Ancāns
Lights: Igors Kapustins
Performers: Lolita Cauka, Maija Doveika, Ainārs Ančevskis, Kaspars Aniņš, Mārtiņš Brūveris, Gundars Grasbergs, Ivars Puga, Romāns Bargais, Jurģis Spulenieks, Uldis Siliņš
With participation of Emīls Dārziņš Choir

Producer: National Theatre (www.teatris.lv)
Premiere on January 29, 2015

For his third production at the Latvian National Theatre, one of the most acknowledged directors of Russia’s contemporary theatre and cinema scene, Kirill Serebrennikov has chosen to focus on a Latvian national icon – “Dreams of Rainis” is a performance about the greatest Latvian poet and playwright, left wing politician and visionary Rainis, featuring the poet’s texts, contemporary live music and youth choir on stage along with the performers.

Rainis (1865-1929) is a Latvian national poet, spiritual authority, candidate for Nobel Prize in literature whose legacy has endured all times and governments. Rainis is also a man with an incredibly intense biography who lived through times of personal and global catastrophes – there is his passion, dependence and envy of his wife, the well known poetess Aspazija, his several exiles, his foreshadowing of revolution, his larger than life artistic and political ambitions.

Avoiding biographical details and focusing instead on dreams and nightmares that Rainis carefully noted throughout his life, Serebrennikov presents Rainis’ ambiguous personality through fast changing and visually gripping scenes (Serebrennikov is also the stage and costume designer) and with it, a precise, striking, at times comic, at times tragic and poetic image gallery of Latvian collective subconsciousness.

Kirill Serebrennikov (1969) is considered to be one of the most talented and forward-looking theatre and film directors of modern Russia. He has received practically all Russian film and theatre awards and Grand Prix from the Rome Film Festival (for his movie “Playing the Victim”). This is quite exceptional for a man who never received a formal education in theatre directing (Serebrennikov holds a degree in physics). His out of the box thinking guarantees an original interpretation of anything he undertakes.
He has staged productions at Moscow Art Theatre MHAT and Sovremennik that were both hits and controversial. He founded and run an experimental, youth-oriented Platform workshops at the Winzavod arts complex. It was therefore a surprise that in 2012, Serebrennikov took over the artistic direction of the declining Gogol Centre, a traditional repertory theatre in a dull part of Moscow. Engaging young directors, as well as stand-out talents from Russian provincial companies and beyond, Serebrennikov has set to define new rules of the game and build an entirely different structure than that of a customary repertory theatre.