February 24, 2015 the prosecutor’s office of Novosibirsk instituted administrative proceedings against the director of the Novosibirsk Opera Boris Mezdricha and the director of the opera “Tannhauser” Timothy Kuljabina, told “Izvestia”, the press service of the theater. Prominent cultural figures accused of “deliberate public desecration of religious or theological literature or objects of religious worship” (ch. 2, Art. 5.26 of the Administrative Code).
The grounds for legal action was the letter Metropolitan Tikhon of Novosibirsk and Berd, who told the prosecutor about the “violation of the rights of believers and church use symbols for other purposes” in the main theater of the city. It was about the new production of Wagner’s “Tannhauser”. In one scene of the play demonstrates poster, faces two main lines of Wagner’s operas – the theme of Christian humility and erotic temptations of paganism.
Boris Mezdrich quoted “Izvestia” text prosecutorial decisions: “Playing nude woman, whose feet are divorced. In the center depicts a man, associated with the image of Jesus Christ on the cross ».
– The poster hangs just 28 seconds, but that’s not the point, but in the context that we do not produce posters and performances – said Mezdrich. – If you look closely, it becomes clear that the play – about faith, honesty, morality. It is this poster becomes the last straw, because of which the hero banished from society. There is no anti-Catholic ideology here and do not close.
According to Mezdricha, the show was sold out twice, collecting more than 3.5 thousand. Viewers. No protests or grievances during performances was not.
The Metropolitan Tikhon, in turn, refers to the treatment of believers whose feelings were hurt staging. He “Tannhauser” is not seen.
– Article Administrative Code, according to which we are accused, is almost never used in court practice – says Boris Mezdrich. – Yes, and a priest of such high rank, as far as I know, is drawn into the evaluation of the first theatrical performance. So we set a precedent, and I think it’s a sad precedent. In court, we say that the situation could be resolved by other means – as is customary in the civilized world. After all, the theater has not come a single letter – not from the audience or from Metropolitan. He immediately asked the prosecutor, the governor and chairman of the Legislative Assembly. I do not think that such a scheme of action will lead to the peace and tranquility of society – concluded Boris Mezdrich.
At the request of the prosecutor, he has already provided a video of the performance, and the program from the booklet, regulations, labor contracts and other documents including a letter of thanks Metropolitan Tikhon addressed Boris Mezdrichu and dated 2014 year.
The administrative case has been referred to the magistrate of a section of the Central District of Novosibirsk. Date of the meeting is not appointed.
In March, “Tannhauser” will be shown twice. Cancelling theater performances do not intend to.