Seasons Archive

Cherry Orchard

by A.P. Chekhov

Cherry Orchard

by A.P. Chekhov

Translation: Mașa Dinescu
David Doiashvili
Tamara Kvesitadze, Gabi Albu
Coordinator Assistant:
David Murman Kartozia
Assistant Director:
Laura Grosu
Florin Fieroiu
Original Music:
Nikoloz Rachveli Memanishvili
Technical Director:
Costi Lupșa

Premiere: 11.11.2017

Last performance: 22.02.2020

Duration: 3 h 15 min / Pause: 15 min


70 lei

50 lei

20 lei (reducere pentru elevi, studenți și pensionari)

Show not recommended for spectators under 16 – contains nudity!

Due to the stroboscopic and light effects, the show is not recommended for spectators with photosensitivity and those suffering from epilepsy!


„Ball during the plague” – Doiashvili, about the „Orchard...”

„Cherry Orchard” is, above all, a family chronicle, whose humour is breaking your heart. The last play of Anton Pavlovich Chekhov premiered at the Moscow Art Theatre in 1904, only a few months before the author’s death and was written in order to celebrate life. „It is, certainly, a sad, bourgeois life, but under no circumstances a burdensome, complaining life”, states the Russian playwright about the universe of his characters.

Symbol of a world in decay and of a radical social transformation leaving the unprepared behind, the cherry orchard must be auctioned in order to pay the debts of a family of Russian aristocrats. But the brilliant actress Ranevskaia and the old child Gaev are the orphans of a world no longer protecting them, left outside time, so the decisions belong to others. They cannot be the saviours of the lost civilisation, they cannot help but fall back in love with the past and move there, with all the energy they are still capable of. In the words of Henri Troyat: „The house, the family’s old residence, charged with memories, receives the master stroke and the owners are dancing over its dead body”.”

A new world forces the gates of their estate, while they are having nostalgias, play pool and talk totally different from the way they act. With this play, Chekhov has innovated dramatic art, proposing the technique of „indirect plot” – the major events unfold outside the stage, and we are the witnesses of the characters’ reactions to what is happening.  

And the eclectic Georgian director David Doiashvili has even captured this convention of „witnesses in action” – from the way the seat rows are arranged on the stage of the Grand Hall, up to the plastic composition of space and the architecture of lights, everything is built for the spectators to look through one window corner and the souls of these people, more or less prepared to catch up with time.

Doiashvili’s „Cherry Orchard” is a spectacular baroque construction, an expansive cocktail of humour, passion, music, the despair to live and not knowing how, the need to change and not knowing what, in search of a new dramatic truth, of poetic cruelty.

Each moment has a specific rhythmic structure, the sound highlights sometimes communicate more than the dialogues, the space has a dynamic, energy, conveys emotion beyond the statements of the characters, because everything they say is actually a double discourse – the surface of the words conceals failures, dissatisfaction and loves which shall never be uttered. Only the image of the possible truths remains.

An enactment with contemporary resonance, in a world where everything is mortgaged, bought and sold, where we are faced with an essential choice: to be or to... speak?

The show has a frenzied rhythm, proposing an impressive choreography of disaster of restless lives, but also a dramaturgy of empathy towards the helpless of this world.

David Doiashivili is at the second collaboration with NTB, the first enacted show being „King Lear”, in 2016.

Translated by Simona Nichiteanu 

Credit photo: Florin Ghioca and Marius Donici

Liubov Andreevna Ranevskaia: Irina Movilă
Monica Davidescu
Ania: Crina Semciuc
Alexandra Sălceanu
Varia: Raluca Aprodu Leonid Andreevici Gaev: Gavril Pătru
Ermolai Alekseevici Lopahin: Ioan Andrei Ionescu Piotr Sergheevici Trofimov: Rareș Andrici
Ionuț Toader
Boris Borisov Simeonov - Piscik: Vitalie Bichir Charlotta Ivanovna: Istvan Teglas
Semion Panteleevici Epihodov: Lari Giorgescu Dunyasha: Ana Covalciuc
Firs: Mihai Constantin Iasa: Silviu Mircescu

"... the director formulates, during the show, through means of expression typical of his theatrical universe, a plethora of answers to this question. Many of them shall shock the Bucharest audience – I am inclined to believe that it is an enactment for which we are not yet fully prepared: we shall welcome with repeated calls on stage a mainly young cast, we, the spectators coming to the theatre specially to applaud our great actors, whom we only allow majestic, idol-like performances? We shall tolerate scenes of masculine frontal nudity (non-erotic) or the suite of ironies incorporating a „drag queen” role into a classic text? Or shall we borrow the words of Anton Pavlovich, after the 1896 premiere of „The Seagull” – „the play collapsed with noise, a heavy tension, perplexity and awkwardness were persisting inside the theatre. The actors performed badly and infamous.”? Will the chromatic Manichaeism of the fabulous costumes from the plays of this director, passionate about fashion design fool us and shall we divide shows, simplistically, into good and bad ones?

I myself, as an old theatre spectator, have been troubled, have felt, but I ended up seduced by the Doiashvilian interpretation of the Chekhovian text. Hence, I urge you not to lodge your axe into the risqué „Cherry Orchard” of David Doiașvili, which connects us to contemporary theatre through a fecund reading of the classic Chekhov.

...For Ioan Andrei Ionescu, Lopahin is the opportunity of his career on the country’s greatest stage and he does not miss it, Irina Movilă achieves a memorable Ranevskaia and Mihai Constantin’s performance (in the role of old Firs), with his Quasimodo gait, shall haunt us for a long time."

Horia Ghibutiu, Blog – Do not Lodge the Axe into Doiashvili’s “Cherry Orchard” at NTB

"...The Georgian director proposes a surprising interpretation of Chekhov’s last play, on a very poetic note, in a stage design with images of a beauty sticking to your retina, an anti-trend beauty I dare say, an almost stifling poetry, although justified to a large extent, and which, entailing a just rhythm of the show, makes this „Cherry Orchard” have, at least in the first part, a real seductive force.

The characters are themselves created in an interesting way, all the time at the border between pathos and the bantering of one’s own pathos. Ranevskaia, performed by Irina Movilă, is an overwhelming presence for all men around her – overwhelming through her irresistible femininity, like a volcano ready to erupt at any moment, mysterious, slightly insecure sometimes, bearing with her the burden of sufferings betrayed by her glances and especially by her smile.

In a flattering role, Ioan Andrei Ionescu is a Lopahin in whom one can strongly feel the rough force of progress, of the new world, the peasant building his life on his own, but who, without truly understanding, remains torn between two worlds.

Raluca Aprodu turns Varia into a character who does not stray too far from the consecrated Varia, is very self-confident, confers a repressed femininity and a sadness often erupting into shimmers of a childhood passed not long ago, like soap bubbles bursting, whereas she remained trapped in some kind of chronic incapacity to act towards her own happiness. Crina Semciuc is a surprising Ania, she is childish, a powerful appearance in her white, lace dress like a doll from another century, with her angels out of rags, which resembles her a little, she has humour and was not yet contaminated by the pathos around her."

Monica Andronescu, – When The Cherry Orchard is a Stunt  

"Photograms of laughter, sadness, irony and a storm of feelings is what Georgian director David Doiashvili has created on the stage of the National Theatre of Bucharest, in ”The Cherry Orchard” by A.P. Chekhov, as in a kind of reversed and inner spyglass. A show which you can only attend with an open mind and this not only because the show contains scenes of nudity, but also because this family chronicle offered to you, in the stage format of a paraphrased reality show, is breaking your heart, dragging you through all life stages. In a world where everything seems on show and for sale, the ones on the stage and from the hall become the consumers of voyeuristic and interchangeable nostalgias.

...Monica Davidescu is shining in the role of Liubova Andreevna Ranevskaia."

Simona Ioniță, Agenț – An Orchard with Voyeuristic Nostalgias    


Festivals & Tours

2017 - Tbilisi International Theatre Festival, Georgia (October 8 and 9)

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