Pavel Valdgardt

The Cat`s House

The Cat`s House

Musical fairy tale for children in one act


Music Director: Nikolay Sokolov

Conductors: Nikolay Sokolov, Vasily Valitov, Valery Kritskov, Evgeny Samoilov

Stage Director: Vyacheslav Eremenko

Designer: Victor Gerasimenko

Stage choirmaster: Marina Vasilkova

Choirmaster: Maria Chekrkchieva

Lighting Designer: Aleksey Luchin


Running time: 1 hour with no intermission


Premiered on 22 April 2005

For children of any age


This is a touching, sometimes funny and educatory tale about a Beauty Cat who was sheltered after a fire not by those who called themselves her friends, but by the good-hearted poor Kittens whom she had formerly rejected. The performance will help young spectators understand how important it is to have true friends.

Pavel Valdgardt’s opera The Cat’s House, based on Samuil Marshak’s play, is the first puppet showin the repertoire of the Novaya Opera Theatre. Each character is played by a puppet and a singer: the puppet’s costume is put on the puppeteer, while the soloist sings for the character and plays downstage. Musical excerpts alternate with recitatives from Marshak’s fairy-tale, turning young spectators’ attention from the musical part to the poetic one.

The music was composed by the Russian composer Pavel Valdgardt (1904-1978). A nobleman by birth; he graduated from the Leningrad Conservatory where he studies with Maximilian Steinberg (Dmitri Shostakovich’s teacher). In the 1920s Valdgardt was a member of the circle Voskresenie, for which he was sentenced to three years in a concentration camp. After the exile he conducted the philharmonic orchestras of Saratov, Stalingrad, Novosibirsk, Odessa, Voronezh, Rostov-on-Don; together with the conductor Isidor Zak he prepared the opening of the Novosibirsk Opera and Ballet Theatre (the 1940s). Valdgardt composed an opera, an operetta, three operas for children, vocal cycles, and music to drama performances.

The production was awarded the Moscow Theatrical Festival diplomas as “The best musical performance for children” and as “The best scenic design interpretation” in the season of 2006-2007.

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