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Nikolai Vasilyevich Gogol

The Overcoat

(Шинель)

Juš A. Zidar

Stage adapted by Tina Kosi, Juš A. Zidar
Music theatre
World premiere
Opening January 2020

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Director Juš A. Zidar

In his short shorty The Overcoat, Gogol, a master of shrewd social satire, presents a portrayal of a humble and diligent low-ranking official Akaky Akakiyevich as an archetype of purity within an inexorable and hierarchically conditioned bureaucratized world. In the meticulous and acrimonious depiction of the anomalies of the Russian bourgeois convention, the anti-hero Akaky proves to be an absolute antithesis to revolting, superficial consumerism and an obsession with a power position. In a tragic society that is strikingly reminiscent of today, the comical Akaky remains misunderstood for good. The protagonist’s fate is tragicomic, while the lack of empathy for anything that deviates from the canon of the futile social average remains disturbingly tragic, even farcical.
We have an immense gift for transforming everything that exists into an irrelevance. (N. V. Gogol)
Such a reading of Gogol’s outline is here pursued by musical dramatization which seeks inspiration in the form of music theatre (Musiktheater). Music is one of the basic expressive means of the present staging and flows almost throughout the staging, be it as a backdrop or as a set of songs which occasionally assume the main role of the narrative.

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