Premiere of the production: 23 May 2010
Revival of the production: 10 December 2017
Opera Velikan (The Giant) was composed by Sergey Prokofiev, when he was 9 years old. The young composer at the time just started learning to play the piano. In Moscow, he was so impressed by the operas Faust and Prince Igor that on his return home to the village Sontsovka Serezha told his mother that he was going to write an opera. He invented the plot and soon showed his sketches to his mom. To her surprise, the composed thing turned to be quite interesting and smooth. By the way, Mozart composed his first thing at the age of 11. Soon the first act of the opera was performed at the Rayevsky’s. After the ‘premiere’ Prokofiev’s parents helped little Sergey go in for music professionally.
Later the composer described his first and beloved opera in his autobiography. For the fact that only 12 pages of the score survived, Velikan could be reconstructed due to the notes in the autobiography. The opera for singing and piano was revived and orchestrated by Sergey Sapozhnikov.
The world premiere — despite its chamber character one can really call it the world premiere — took place on 23 May 2017 at the Mikhailovsky Theatre. The opera was staged by Arcady Gevondov. The children who attended the cycle Backstage Stories became its first audience.
Now Velikan comes back to the Mikhailovsky Theatre: it will crown the Backstage subscription and probably will inspire some young musicians to compose an opera, too.