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Eternal Return


From 11 September 2020 visitors to the Catherine Park can enjoy the immersive audio promenade show "Eternal Return" by stage director Semyon Alexandrovsky of St Petersburg's Pop-up Theatre.

Alexandrovsky and his team of talents such as dramatist Asya Voloshina, sound artist Oleg Makarov and actors Alyona Starostina, Vasily Reutov and Maria Zimina, created an engrossing story of love, mystery and history on a binaural recording, which gives the listener a three-dimensional sound sensation of actually walking together with the performers in the park: from the façade of the Catherine Palace down to the Old Garden and the Great Pond and then to the Admiralty, the Turkish Bath, the Marble Bridge, the Girl-with-a-Pitcher Fountain, the Granite Terrace and the Ramp and Hanging Garden by the Cameron Gallery (see pic. 6/7 above).

The co-project of Pop-up Theatre and Tsarskoe Selo is a new language for the dialogue with the visitor, designed to draw attention to the museum's history. According to Director Olga V. Taratynova of Tsarskoe Selo, the huge success of the museum's annual theatrical art-and-fashion show Associations in the parks prompted an immediate acceptance of the theatre's collaboration offer. "But an audioplay is a completely new experience for us", she admits. "Some say, a good museum is where visitors discover something new. Some say, a good theatre is where viewers don't lean back on their seats. I believe, this play provokes some deep thinking, while the pavilions and landscapes of the Catherine Park give it a magnificent scenery."

As Semyon Alexandrovsky explains, "Coming into contact with Russian history, you involuntarily try it on yourself and you find a huge amount of contradictions, doubts, and yet hopes. I think this play will cause a lot of controversy, the audience will be polarized over its content and heroes' standpoints. I hope this work can actualize a discussion both necessary and useful. And of course, an hour-long walk through the wonderful park of Tsarskoe Selo is always a pleasure."

This project is brought to you thanks to financial support from Hermitage 21st Century Foundation and Charitable Foundation for the Development of Tsarskoe Selo.

The one-hour long audio promenade show is in Russian only and available for visitors over 15 years of age Wednesday to Monday at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.

Tickets (Rub 500, park fee included) can be purchased on our website and at Information Centre in the palace's Chapel Wing (near the Lyceum Arch), where the headphones and audio guides are available for a deposit of a valid ID or Rub 5,000  (to be returned at the promenade's end near the Cameron Gallery).