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Astana Opera to present Akhmet Zhubanov and Latif Khamidi’s national opera Abai to Mukhtar Auezov’s libretto

Astana Opera to present Akhmet Zhubanov and Latif Khamidi’s national opera Abai to Mukhtar Auezov’s libretto
Фото: astanaopera.kz 29.04.2024 17:08 1015

On Kazakhstan People’s Unity Day, Astana Opera will present Akhmet Zhubanov and Latif Khamidi’s national opera Abai to Mukhtar Auezov’s libretto. Thus, significant debuts of young soloists will take place on May 1 and 3 at the opera house’s Grand Hall. Elmar Buribayev will conduct the performances, El.kz cites astanaopera.kz.

It should be noted that Honoured Workers of Kazakhstan Zhanat Shybykbayev and Talgat Mussabayev will perform the title role of Abai. Principal soloists of the opera company emphasized the importance of maintaining solidarity and mutual respect for traditions and cultures. 

“When we talk about unity, the words of the great poet and philosopher Abai Qunanbaiuly immediately come to mind: “Love all humanity as your brother.” It is a great honor for me to portray this great genius onstage. Abai had enough love in his heart not only for his people, but for all of humanity. Every time I appear before the audience as Abai, I strive to convey his wisdom and diversity of thought. In anticipation of this wonderful holiday, I would like to wish that the unity of our people always remains unshakable,” the famous opera singer Zhanat Shybykbayev said. 

Incidentally, representatives of different ethnicities work in the Astana Opera team. These days, cellist of the Astana Opera Symphony Orchestra Kurvanzhan Akhatov will also take part in the production along with other orchestra musicians. He says that he is a Uyghur by ethnicity and has been working at the opera house since its opening. “There is a very friendly atmosphere here. I like that we often perform concerts on holidays, introducing music of different nations to the audience. Representatives of many ethnicities work here, and they all perform compositions of their people as part of their concert programs. In one of the musical evenings, opera singer Maira Mukhamedkyzy and I took the stage with a Uyghur folk song and I played the Uyghur folk instrument dap (dayereh). I strive to present the music by Uyghur composers at the opera house. I often perform works by the founder of Uyghur professional music, Quddus Khojamyarov. I would like to note that all the holidays of the Turkic peoples are similar, so we try to treat each other with national dishes, for example, samsa and manti,” the musician recounted. 

There are also many people of various ethnicities in the opera company. Principal soloist Tatyana Vitsinskaya and soloist Ramzat Balakishiyev, Russian and Azerbaijani, perform the opera Abai in Kazakh with great pleasure. 

“It is a great joy for me to be a part of Astana Opera and work in a wonderful, friendly team. It is especially heartwarming to take the stage on Kazakhstan People’s Unity Day in the opera Abai. It is very symbolic and at the same time patriotic that singers of different ethnicities perform this opera masterpiece in Kazakh together,” principal soloist Tatyana Vitsinskaya emphasized. 

“I was born in Kazakhstan, so the Kazakh culture and language are all native to me. The opera Abaioccupies a central place in my repertoire, because the music by the great classics such as Akhmet Zhubanov and Latif Khamidi, penetrates into the very heart with its stunning beauty. Moreover, the opera includes songs written by Abai himself, and performing them is a special responsibility for me, as for any citizen of Kazakhstan,” the opera house’s soloist Ramzat Balakishiyev shared. 

It is worth noting that this time, in addition to masters of the stage arts, soloists of the capital’s opera house, the Astana Opera International Opera Academy attendees will also perform in the legendary opera Abai. One of the academy attendees, Merei Kadyrkhanov, talked about how he was preparing to present Azim’s part on Kazakhstan People’s Unity Day.

“The opera Abai is valuable not only for its musical beauty, but also for its educational meaning, which makes people think about many issues. My hero, Azim, is one of Abai’s best pupils, but his actions were directed against his teacher. Although he appears as a close friend of Abai in the opera, in the end he still succumbs to Zhirenshe’s temptation and commits a crime,” tenor Merei Kadyrkhanov explains. 

The opera house’s soloist Talgat Allabirinov, like his colleague Merei Kadyrkhanov, will make his debut on this holiday. 

“I first performed Aidar’s aria on an exam in 2016, when I was in my 3rd year of college. Then, yet again, my friends and I bought tickets for the opera Abai, performed at Astana Opera. We sincerely admired the music, the artists and the entire production itself. At that time, I began to like Aidar’s part even more. Dreams come true and it is a great honor and gift for me to take the Astana Opera stage as one of my favorite characters,” Talgat Allabirinov said. 

Performances start at 6 PM and 7 PM. 

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