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Subject: Re: "Eugene Onegin" question
From: robert levine <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:robert levine <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sat, 13 Jan 2018 13:43:47 -0500
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To Nina, Dennis, et al,

Onegin is an ideal portrait of a narcissist, and they don't learn. "What
have i done to you?" or "How happy we could have been!" might have implied
learning and growth, but Onegin is incapable of seeing past his nose; the
only reason he looks into people's eyes is to see his own reflection.
One of the reasons I don't like the opera is because of my dislike for the
title character! It should have been called "Tatyana."
Bob L

On Sat, Jan 13, 2018 at 1:25 PM, Nina Gettler <[log in to unmask]>
wrote:

> The only thing Onegin learns too late is that he wants Tatiana now that he
> can't have her.
> Pushkin's narrator says that Onegin didn't want the young, shy girl who
> was in love, poor, and artless. He wanted the princess, the goddess, who
> was forbidden fruit.
>
> His last words in the opera show that he's still just thinking of himself
> [Shame. Sadness. Oh, my wretched fate]
>
> In refusing him, Tatiana doesn't just listen to her head instead of her
> heart, she listens to her conscience, her moral compass. She admits to
> Onegin that she still loves him, but she says that she will remain faithful
> to her husband [but//I have been given to another and I will ever be
> faithful to him].
>
> The ending in the verse novel is a little different in that after Tatiana
> and Onegin's conversation, she leaves and shortly afterward, Gremin enters.
> But no words are exchanged between him and Onegin. The narrator says "in
> this moment of our hero's misfortune, we leave him, dear Reader" [roughly
> translated]
>
> This would not have been very effective on the stage, so I imagine that's
> why Tchaikovsky gave Onegin the last word.
>
> Nina Gettler
> Graz, Austria
>
>
> On 1/13/2018 1:40 AM, OPERA-L automatic digest system wrote:
>
>> Date:    Fri, 12 Jan 2018 19:04:27 -0500
>> From:    Dennis Ryan<[log in to unmask]>
>> Subject: "Eugene Onegin" question
>>
>>           Hi, Y'all!
>>
>>      Driving home this afternoon I heard much of Act III of the Met's
>> broadcast of "Eugene Onegin" on Serius XM.  I pulled into the garage just
>> as the late la Juntwaite was remarking that Onegin "tragically learns too
>> late."
>>
>>      Which prompts my question to all of you:  DOES HE?
>>
>>      We have absolutely no evidence that, even at the end of the opera,
>> he has "learned" anything at all.  But the opera presents 2 1/2 hours of
>> evidence that he has spent his entire life as a thoughtless, opportunistic,
>> cossetted, spoiled, narcissistic drifter.  I simply do not buy the notion
>> that anything truly "tragic" has happened here.  In fact, I would compare
>> Onegin to a very similar character in Dickens:  Steerforth, in "David
>> Copperfield."
>>
>>      I have never gotten around to reading the Pushkin verse novel, alas,
>> and have always wanted to.
>>
>>      What say you all?
>>
>>      Best wishes,
>>
>>      Dennis Ryan
>>
>
>
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