The forthcoming premiere at the Apostol Karamitev Stage of “Ivan Vazov” National Theatre takes the audience into the world of the mystical play 'Mermaid', which Pushkin never finished with premieres on 22 and 23 April.
This little play by Alexander Pushkin holds many mysteries – the author neither finished it, nor gave it a title, nor published it. Scholars argue to this day about both the genre and composition of 'Mermaid'.
Many writers and poets have written an ending for this one-act drama of ill-fated love, betrayal, and revenge. It was in the twentieth century that Vladimir Nabokov was unable to avoid his temptation and wrote the play’s most famous ending. It is as if Pushkin himself had invited readers and their descendants, each in their own way, to unravel 'Mermaid', to fantasise freely, to search for new meanings, to connect it to modern times.
The young director Teodora Lilyan has not seen an old fairy tale in Pushkin’s play, but a very contemporary story, performed by contemporary people. The characters seem to ask themselves and us what happiness is. At different times people answer this question differently – love, family, children, freedom, success. And at all times, they pay with their lives for such a choice.
Pushkin, of course, doesn’t know the “right” answer either. He doubts, grieves, and reflects with the audience, and even – all sorts of unexpected events happen in the theatre – he may appear among the characters of the play…”
Dramaturgy by Roman Dolzhansky.
Photo: Stefan N. Shterev