17-18 May 2003

Reims, France, is the world capital of champagne, a drink that is accompanied by high spirits, festivities and victory. This time the festivities took place on May 17 in the Grand Théâtre de Reims. At 8:30 p.m. local time the movie-opera "Alexander Nevsky" by Serge Prokofiev and Serge Eisenstein was presented. In this case the term "movie-opera" is not far-fetched. The peculiarity of this presentation was that Eisenstein's film was shown in this theatre, but Prokofiev's music was performed live. The result was earthshaking and contemporary. All the elements of a supershow were there - a very convincing visual aspect of incredible power and brilliant music whose emotional impact sent shivers down the spine of the listeners and made their hearts beat faster. Fragments of the soundtrack with crackling and fizzling speech due to the poor quality of the original recording not only did not detract from the intensity of the work - apprehensions notwithstanding - but strengthened it through the contrast with the pure sound of the live orchestra and choir.