My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Anton Chekhov’s play The Cherry Orchard is an extremely interesting play that has a duel nature as both comedy and tragedy. However, some non-Russian audiences may have difficulty understanding the sense of futility Chekhov gives it.
The plot of the play centers around an aristocratic woman and her family whose fortunes have gone sour. They are about to sell their famed cherry orchard to pay the mortgage.
Through the course of the play, the family finds several options to save the cherry orchard, but they do nothing. The estate is sold to a former serf, who doesn’t seem to appreciate the cherry orchard and cuts it down.
The tragedy is a symbolic one. The aristocracy tries in vain to maintain its social position, while the new bourgeoisie can’t find meaning in their new wealth.
Bottom Line: The Cherry Orchard is a fantastic play, both to read or to watch, though parts of it get “lost-in-translation” from the original Russian audience.