Dmitri Shostakovich dreamed of creating an opera based on Chekhov's mystical tale, The Black Monk. Decades of suffering under political attacks within an oppressive Soviet regime wreaked havoc on the composer’s life, leaving the work ultimately unfinished. Haunted by the looming aftermath of Stalin’s totalitarian reign, Shostakovich is left with a deteriorating body and mind, struggling to complete his life’s work. In a bold intersection of chamber music and theater, witness the trials and redemption of one man’s obsession as the Emerson String Quartet and a cast of actors tell this story through the eyes of Shostakovich himself.
Created by Philip Setzer and James Glossman
Musical Direction by Philip Setzer
Written and Directed by James Glossman
David Strathairn (Shostakovich)
Evelyn McGee Colbert
Presented in collaboration with the Smithsonian Associates