Carlo Gozzi
Staging Mark Weil
Scenography and costumes Vasily Yuriev
Composer Bahadyr Zakirov
Choreographer Bahram Matchanov
Vocals Natalya Kobzeva
Mudzafer, former butcher, now ruler of Samarkand Boris Gafurov
Uzbek, the young king of Samarkand, disguised as a beggar, an imam, the Sultan of Khorezm Himal Gafiyatullin
Saed, formerly a military man, now a pauper from the Qur'an Rustam Mamedov, farruh Moldahanov
Dzemruda, the rejected wife of Tartaglia Nigora Karimbaeva, Alina Zimerman, Jemma Fagradyan
Tartaglia, the richest Samarkand merchant Alexander Zlatin
Rosalind, a resident of Samarkand Julia Plakida
Truffaldino from Bergamo in love with Esmeralda Rafael Babadjanov
Trufaldino, the dreamer Jan Dobrynin
Pantalone from Venice, now a beggar Maxim Fadeev
Angela, daughter of Pantalone, beloved by Uzbek Nigina Dzhabarova, Misha Safaryan
Brigella, artisan from Bergamo Alexey Pistsov
Omega, Brigella's daughter Natalia Lee, Anastasia Pryadkina
Smeraldina - the daughter of Muzafer, in love with Truffaldino Galina Borisova

“Happy Beggars”

A story based on K. Gozzi’s play, but transported to Samarkand, where traditional characters of Italian Commedia del’Arte found real personalities, histories, nationalities, and and languages.

In Gozzi’s play adapted by Mark Weil – Samarkand is Babylon where Asian and European cultures, different perspectives on life, society and values all mix together.

The characters in the play befriend each other, fall in love, sometimes they fight (maybe even throw a punch), but they can’t live without each other. The play, following Commedia del’Arte’s improvisational tradition, reflects Ilkhom’s feelings about the events that take place in our lives, as well as recent history. But it isn’t just an allusion to the reality surrounding us. It is also a captivating spectacle developed by the actors on stage, most of whom are barely twenty years old. And perhaps this is why their final address to the audience is both hopeful and tragic: “Unhappy, starving people. For you we turned bread to spectacle tonight. In return, I ask you only for one thing. Turn your prayers to the sky with fervor. For us and for yourself pray to the Gods. Ask them to send us wisdom to unveil the truth. To bring back justice and peace to an unhappy country, and make all servants, whom we love like our own children – happy.”

Music used in the play: Verdi, Saint-Saines, Chaikovsky, N. Roth, Messi, Di Capua’s Neapolitan song, “O Sole Mío!”
Voices of: Maria Callas and Luciano Pavarotti
Couplets to the melody of “Seven Magpies”
The Ilkhom Theatre would like to express it’s gratitude to: Tulkin Isakov for assisting with recording the music track, Khabibullah Umarov for consulting on playing the dutar and doira, Alisher Irgashev, Nigina Yuldasheva, Lola Saifi, Elena Nurmukhamedova, and Zhanna Lavrova for taking part in designing and creating the costumes.

The play premiered in May 1992.

Duration: 2 h 50 m (with intermission)

Suggested age: 16+