Like the guy from the village near Orenburg became a rising star of the Paris Opera

© Photo from the personal archive of Mikhail Timoshenkova Mikhail TymoshenkoLike the guy from the village near Orenburg became a rising star of the Paris Opera© Photo from personal archive of Mikhail Tymoshenko

From downy shawls — to the French desserts. This week in the festival CONTEXT. Diana Vishneva will premiere the documentary «Paris Opera». The picture Swiss Director Jean-stéphane Bron was recognized as the best at the 39th Moscow international film festival. One of the main characters of the film was the young Russian singer Mikhail Timoshenko. At the time of filming, he was only 21 years old. Behind the charismatic guy from the Urals village Kalikino, 200 kilometers from Orenburg, a music school in Mednogorsk and the Conservatory in Weimar German.

Last season, the now 23-year-old singer debuted on the stage of the Opera Bastille in «Wozzek». He is also involved in the productions of «don Carlos», «Ballo in Maschera», «Boris Godunov» and «Rigoletto». Mikhail Timoshenko told RIA Novosti, as he studied French on the move, what he thinks about the French tradition to strike and who from the Russian stars wants to work.

© RIA Novosti / Viktor to Eucairite in photobacteria the Grand Opera in ParisLike the guy from the village near Orenburg became a rising star of the Paris Opera© RIA Novosti / Viktor to Eucairite in photobacteria the Grand Opera in Paris

 

— In the film you say that you came from a small Ural town, and had not been in such major cities as Paris. What were your first impressions?

— The impression was strong and vague, because I immediately fell in Paris — before that, studied for four years in Germany, in Weimar. It’s a small town, but at least to Europe I had time to get used to. Still from the same small town I was in another, slightly bigger, and then arrived in one of the most important historical centers of Europe. Of course, at first it was very hard to understand where I do and are doing here. Even after two and a half years, I sometimes walk down the street and think, «I’m in Paris, my God!»

— When you auditioned at the Academy of the Paris Opera, counting on the fact that you will be? Or was it something out of science fiction?

— It was a total accident. In the last year of study at the Conservatory I started to work with an agent. After a little discussion we decided that it would be nice to audition at various Opera studios in Germany, and Paris then was not the question. I chose Hamburg, Munich, Berlin, Frankfurt, but by happy coincidence, my agent was a Frenchman, moreover, a Parisian. He once said, «don’t you want to try Opera Studio in Paris? Well, you never know». I remember my reaction: «What? Oh, in another country, I do not know the language, it is far, expensive and so on. But he insisted: «You have nothing to lose». And I went.

© Photo from the personal archive of Mikhail Timoshenkova Mikhail TymoshenkoLike the guy from the village near Orenburg became a rising star of the Paris Opera© Photo from personal archive of Mikhail Timoshenkova Michael Tymoshenko

— When I found out that you took, not scared? You don’t know French.

For me, it was a complete surprise, I thought that I would come, sing and leave. This is the Opera Bastille, one of the international centres of the Opera world. Not on my lip, so to speak. But the most interesting that Paris was the first in my list of auditions at other theatres. The test took place from 4 to 7 January, and 7 January, I decided to go to a local Orthodox Church and sing the Christmas service. After the question: «What can you do?» and my answer: «Yes, I sing a little» I was allowed into the choir. I tried very hard not to spoil the service of the ignorance of the party. Just called me and said that audition is passed. By the way, I didn’t know that this moment was recorded on camera and then he burned with shame, when I watched the movie (laughs).

— How much time it took you to learn French? As they were doing? Went to short courses, hire a teacher?

I practically knew neither French nor English, so communication tools I had. Only now, two years later, I started more or less normal conversation with people. Although to say a long monologue, to tell long about yourself or to communicate on complex subjects is, of course, is extremely difficult. To be honest, I did not specifically prepared, relied on Russian «perhaps», but when I arrived, it was suffering, a sort of «crying in corner»:»I don’t understand, no one understands me».

I was lucky that a very good classmates, we are like one family. With them I quickly learned English, and they helped me to raise required to study a level French. I never hired a teacher who was not enrolled in the course — all by ear. So pretty well speak but not read and write.

© Photo : courtesy of the press service of the Center for documentary film frames from the film «Paris Opera» Like the guy from the village near Orenburg became a rising star of the Paris Opera© Photo : courtesy of the press service of the Center for documentary film frames from the film «Paris Opera»

— Despite the language barrier, the film shows that you are very warm, all staff of the Opera , from accompanists and teachers to eminent singers. How this idyllic picture true and typical of the Opera world in General? For example, the ballet environment is considered to be rather brutal and competitive.

— It is my big luck to encounter such friendly staff, very good guys who each other were. Together we visited thousands of bars all over Paris, we had a journey together, played paintball, shot each other, it was fun and sometimes painful (laughs). It really was a very strong team, but this idyll is probably the exception.

— In the film, much attention is paid to strikes in the Paris Opera. For the Russian audience is quite unusual. It’s hard to imagine that come in a Large theater, and the show is cancelled due to the national strike of the choir, for example. How do you feel about this side of French theatrical life?

— In my personal opinion, to cancel the show is the last thing. Invested so much and expected from him (I’m not even talking about money), so many people found the time and desire this day to visit the Opera. And when it all collapses due to the fact that lighting has processed for 30 minutes, this is not the case. This part of the French culture I can’t support: they are constantly on strike, achieve something, require. On the one hand, it’s good, but with my Russian mentality I can’t understand it, just feel sorry for me as a musician who would prepare this performance. I believe in the sacred meaning of music, so any canceled a performance for me — a heavy blow, even if I was there and not singing.

© Photo from the personal archive of Mikhail Timoshenkova Mikhail TymoshenkoLike the guy from the village near Orenburg became a rising star of the Paris Opera© Photo from personal archive of Mikhail Timoshenkova Michael Tymoshenko

The shooting of the film coincided with the terrible terrorist attack at the «Bataclan». Do you remember how did you feel on hearing this? Not afraid to go to the Opera, because then there was a feeling that this could happen anywhere?

By and large, I’m a fatalist. If something should happen, it will happen, so I’ve never been scared to walk around Paris. I helps again faith in the music, that it might have something to change. This tragedy gave me extra impetus to work, search for deeper meanings in the works that I do, for a more thorough preparation for the concerts. I did everything I could. We musicians should dispel these fears, that’s our job.

— Describe your normal working day.

— My whole life is in the Opera. I Wake up, eat and just go there. In Paris, housing is a big problem I have now is quite small and cold apartment, so I always run to the Opera, where heating is where a lot of space and you can work out where my friends and wonderful desserts (laughs). The morning begins with rote learning, teach new texts, notes, then get to class and start working on old works. Repeat what to perform in the near future, and in the evening I try to sing in full voice. A day is two hours, not more, because the singing itself, the vocals is just the icing on the cake. I’m not a supporter of the theory that you need to sing for 5-6 hours a day to get in shape. If all preparations are made correctly, the vocals — only the final part that connects all the elements together. I’m going home around 10 PM.

© Photo : courtesy of the press service of the Center for documentary film frames from the film «Paris Opera» Like the guy from the village near Orenburg became a rising star of the Paris Opera© Photo : courtesy of the press service of the Center for documentary film frames from the film «Paris Opera»

— The Director of «the Paris Opera», Jean-stéphane Bron has made you one of the main characters of the narrative. How did you react to the fact that you were being filmed? The result is like?

— The result exceeded all my expectations. I didn’t think the movie will be as truthful and interesting. Bron told the story of this Opera, about the world in which we live. Jean-stéphane is fluent in German. I remember he came to me and said, «Can we follow you like a little?». I absolutely usual to write because when you work with a teacher, master classes, or simply rehearsing very often use the camera. To not be afraid and do not be distracted, I learned to ignore it. First of all, I did it for professional purposes, which in the end helped me a lot. Jean-stéphane didn’t ask me to do anything, just went after him and shot.

— The film shows how in the corridors of the Opera you will become acquainted with his idol British Opera singer Bryn Terfel, who recognizes you are not a follower, but an equal, a colleague. Is there one among Russian artists, the people with whom you would like to work with?

My problem is that I started my professional musical journey in Russia. I feel a little weird because I’m Russian people without any access to the Russian theatre and Russian Opera of life. I’m very sorry about it, of course. My dream is to work with Maestro Gergiev. I pray about it every day. I also have a great desire to work with the Director Chernyakov. I really would like to find a contact Dmitri Hvorostovsky, and at least a few words with him to talk about the singer’s life, unless, of course, it will feel good, and if you have time and desire to communicate. I grew up on his writings and have tremendous respect for what he has achieved.

© Photo : courtesy of the press service of the Center for documentary film frames from the film «Paris Opera» Like the guy from the village near Orenburg became a rising star of the Paris Opera© Photo : courtesy of the press service of the Center for documentary film frames from the film «Paris Opera»

I love to work out with the known Russian singer Vladislav Sulimsky. We are good friends with him, but he has such a busy schedule that I can only hope that someday it will be far from here. We have sung in Spain. I admire his Rigoletto (party in the eponymous Opera by Giuseppe Verdi. — Approx. ed.). He sent me a tape, I heard that his speech created a furore in St. Petersburg theater. I love this work of Verdi, but I know that never will sing Rigoletto, no matter how many were sung.

Why?

Is a role for the baritone, for a sturdy Italian baritone.

— And you — bass-baritone.

— Good question, who am I (laughs). But I’m not Rigoletto, but who knows, because life is so interesting!

Source

Be the first to comment on "Like the guy from the village near Orenburg became a rising star of the Paris Opera"

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.


*