150 REASONS NOT TO DEFEND OUR MOTHERLAND
150 REASONS NOT TO DEFEND OUR MOTHERLAND
About the fall of Constantinople and 7 strategies to survive in times of changes
Everything around us can disappear at once: our beloved people, our values, which we shared from our childhood, our great cities, and our world empires. Disappear, to return quite different.
Theatre and music tell the story of May 29 1453 AD.
The story about the fall of the most important city of that time.
About the reasons, why West Europe didn't help Byzantium, about 150 reasons not to defend one’s Motherland, 150 reasons not to join together in the hour of danger, 150 reasons to work for the enemy.
About thousands absolutely true and justified motives to search for and finally find compromise with our enemy and with our conscience.
And about the search for the only reason to guard up to one’s death the ideas and values, which have been sold out, betrayed and abandoned by others.
Everyone, who can hold a sword, will die this day. But when all men die, the women will remain to tell the world what has happened.
The play contains «verbatim of 15th century» – authentic janissary’s notes (witness of this event), original verses by Sultan Mehmed Fatih and poems by Sufi poet Yunus Emre, which were translated specially for the performance.
Telling the story:
Anna Kotova-Deryabina, Tatiana Parshina, Anastasia Patlay, Natalia Sapetskaya/Nargisa Abdullaeva, Varvara Faer
Playwright and director - Elena Gremina
Composer – Dmitry Vlasik
Setting – Helena Gremina, Konstantin Terentiev
Theatrical costumes – Nadezda Averina
Premiere was at November 1, 2013
The duration of the show – 1 hour and 40 minutes without intermission
You can read more about the history of creation the show here – (Elena Gremina’s interview, “Teatral” magazine)
PARTICIPATIONS IN THE FESTIVALS:
• September 28, 2013 the play was performed in Comedy Theatre (Prague, Czech Republic) as work-in-progress.
• November 23, 2013 Forum «New cultural territories» (Kostroma, art-center «Stanciya»)
• June 26, 2014 International theatre festival VOICES OF RUSSIA (Vologda, Russia)
• October 6, 2014 International theatre festival HIGH FEST (Yerevan, Armenia).
• October 8, 2014 International theatre festival TBS INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF THEATRE (Tbilisi, Georgia).
• August 9, 2015 International theatre festival THEATERSTOCK (Bacau, Romania).
• August 12-13, 2015 International theatre festival STAGE (Helsinki, Finland).
PRESS AND CRITICS ABOUT THE PERFORMANCE:
Alena Solntseva, theatre critic: «Today I saw a very good performance. It was created by Elena Gremina. The name of the show is “150 reasons not to defend our Motherland”. It is about the fall of Constantinople. Five actresses are telling you the story of why this great city collapsed; of those who tried to defend it, of those who attacked it, of were there any alternatives or not, of how the world is collapsing, and why someone wins the battle and another ones lose».
Dina Goder, theatre critic: « Me and my students, we have watched “150 reasons not to defend our Motherland”. This is a very interesting story about the collapse of Constantinople, showing us different ways to look at these events – from the point of view of participants, conquerors, victims, executioners et cetera… and a discussion of allies why they should not help, and defender’s discussion whether to protect or not to protect the city. Many different historical documents are used, but nevertheless, the intonation is very modern and it sounds very actual…»
Alena Karas', theatre critic: «To hear the tragedy of those days out of the silence, Gremina asked composer Dmitriy Vlasik to write music, but he transformed silence and prayer so that they become the music. He creates an aural image of Byzantine stichyra and Eastern meditation, the images of war, betrayal and ruins.
…It turned out unexpectedly that fatal collapse of Byzantium, which happened because someone betrayed, another one sold out, some people were just waiting with indifference, is much more important for us, and is much more important part of our contemporary history, than we thought before…»
Elena Volkova, philologist, culturologist: «When I heard the name of this new performance, I thought first about the problems of modern Russian army and began to list in my mind all reasons not to be in our army: dedovshchina (bullying), cruelty and impunity, recruiting to “hot spots”, abasement, tortures, murders, state showing apathy toward disabled war veterans et cetera. I didn’t find 150 reasons, but could believe there are so many. But the first part of the performance refuted my expectations…»
Natalia Vitnitskaya, theatre critic, “Vash Dosug” (Your leisure time) journal: «The whole performance is, like an Oriental carpet, made of different materials. But its base is documentary – “Janissary’s notes” (Verbatim of 15th century) and Sultan Mehmed’s verses. Mehmed tried to conquer the capital of Byzantine Empire, as many Sultans before him. But he was the first who managed to do it. The question “why” – is the main theme for this performance. Why so-called Western “friends” didn’t help? Why the great states of those times didn’t even want to supply any help? And the only one person who helped was slandered? Why the smartest and the most talented people were not appreciated at their true value and were sold out to the enemy? Was there anything that can unite the nation and was there anyone who believed in victory?»