Anna Yablonskaya died at the peak of her career, having just written her best, most incisive text – the play Pagans. This play is a brutal drama about the crisis of faith in contemporary culture, about our confusion around questions of belief and the extremes to which we will go in search of individual salvation. In one family’s moment of extreme destruction and dysfunction, the protagonist’s religious mother-in-law, suddenly returns after wandering between monasteries. The first act is like a statement of faith, the second act its denial. In the end there is only the confusion, chaos, and silence that is characteristic of the state of faith in contemporary Russian culture. The topic is taboo. It’s not often spoken about in the theatre. Yablonskaya conducts an honest and convincing attempt to face this impasse of a question: to believe or not to believe, and in what? As a playwright she searches, without taking a side. She concerns herself with the fragility of faith that rests only on belief in miracles without any intellectual confirmation.
This production was produced over the course of one year by the Teatr.doc collective led by Lera Surkov (“Alkonovells”)
Anna Yablonskaya (alias Anna Mashutina) was a renowned Ukrainian playwright, poet and novelist who wrote in Russian. She was born 20 July 1981 in Odessa. Yablonskaya was killed in a terrorist attack in Moscow’s Domodedovo airport on 24 January 2011. Her final play Pagans was nominated for several prestigious awards in playwrighting.
The premiere was in March 2012.
Playwright – Anna Yablonskaya
Director - Valeria Surkova
Designer - Ekaterina Dzhagarova
Light, costumes - Suzanne Musaeva
Scenery - Egr Nagaen
Marina - Elena Nesterova
Oleg - Valentin Samokhin
Kristina - Isabel Eidlen
Natalia - Tatyana Vladimirova
Boatswain - Dmitry Urosov