BT-SLO Spring Program
Gilbert Reed's The Firebird and other works
April 3 & 4 | Spanos Theatre PAC SLO
Story of The Firebird
The Prince, Ivan Tsarevitch, leisurely roams and hunts in the forest when he enters the domain of Kastchei, the evil monster king. He spies and becomes intrigued with the beautiful, glittering Firebird and is determined to capture her. The Firebird pleads for her freedom, which she eventually buys with one of her magic feathers, a talisman, and a promise to come to the Prince’s aid whenever he should call. The Firebird then flies free.
The Princesses, held captive by Kastchei, cautiously enter the forest glade and begin to frolic. Prince Ivan, alerted by their approach, watches them in secret, and he quickly falls in love with the Princess Tsarevna. Prince Ivan and Princess Tsarevna, dancing in courtship, are joined by the other Princesses. Tsarevna warns Ivan that Kastchei’s minions, enslaved creatures themselves, are stalking him.
Kastchei, standing on his magnificent throne, manifests himself out of darkness and commands his slaves, turned to monsters, to capture Prince Ivan. As the monsters chase Ivan, Princess Tsarevna begs Kastchei for Ivan’s freedom. Kastchei refuses and commands his monsters to take them all.
Unable to escape, Ivan reveals the feather-talisman and waves it, which summons the Firebird. The Firebird intercedes keeping Kastchei and his monsters at bay and Ivan and the Princesses secure. The Firebird quickly transforms the chase into a dance so furious and frenzied that the monsters collapse and can no longer move. Without his monsters, Kastchei is suddenly fearful of the Firebird. He retreats to his throne, and the Firebird puts him into a trance.
As Kastchei sleeps, the Firebird informs Prince Ivan of the hidden egg that holds Kastchei’s life force. She tells him that breaking the egg will destroy Kastchei and all his power, and it will free the Princesses and Princes. Ivan seizes the egg and, as Kastchei awakens, taunts him with threats of shattering it. Ivan finally throws and breaks the egg destroying Kastchei, and all are freed.
Prince Ivan is wed to Princess Tsarevna in a grand ceremony in which all participate and rejoice as the Firebird flies eternal guard.