Kuda, kuda, kuda vi udalilis, vesni moyei zlatiye dni?
Where Oh where have you gone, golden days of my youth?
This is a love story out of sync. Tatiana loves Onegin, who rejects her. Then Onegin loves Tatiana who rejects him. Borrowing this tale of youth and bitterness from Pushkin, Tchaikovsky deploys his heightened lyricism and tortuous voluptuousness, the better to whisper his truth into our ear. All of which makes for the most intimate opera of the repertoire, just as its author wished: “Eugene Onegin is infinitely poetic. But I’m keeping a clear head and I know there will be few stage effects and little action in this opera. But the poetry of the whole, the human aspect and the simplicity of the subject, served by a brilliant text, will largely compensate for these defects.” The full complement of Moscow’s Bolshoi Theatre, with the choir, orchestra and soloists performing under their musical director, Tugan Sokhiev, have been invited to the Festival d’Aix to give a concert performance of this masterpiece of the repertoire that is part of their DNA.