As someone who went to Voyage, you dodged a bullet. The edits made for NY were terrible and some of the actors were wretchedly miscast. What was up on that stage was not a breath of a single eternal idea. Please imagine a fey Bakunin, a wooden Stankevich, a Tatiana that can only overact - can you get Voyage out of that? Especially when they decided to foreground and make canon the suspicion of Bakunin's incestuous affection for Tatiana. By having Katya the prostitute figure it out on Michael's reappearance in town and straight out tell Belinsky like he's a moron for not coming to the same conclusion out loud.
I was at first preview of it in London. That's the script you've read, that you adore, that we all adore. I almost left at intermission, the NY production was so bad. It means I'll never see Shipwreck or Salvage because they're just not going to get produced, but between the accent problems (what Brian O'Byrne was doing as Herzen, I have no idea, but it was weird and distracting and awful), the wretched miscasting of key characters, and terrible directorial decisions about rewrites because of a belief American audiences are stupid and must be led by the nose, I wasn't exactly going to get Shipwreck and Salvage anyway since I'd already paid for Voyage and didn't get what I'd paid for. I stuck around because the best performance in Act I was from Jason Butler Harner as Turgenev, and if I left, I wouldn't get to see him again. Billy Crudup was good enough as Belinsky, Jennifer Ehle was fine as Lyuba, but Jason Butler Harner *was* Turgenev. People around me left at intermission because they thought the show sucked, and I was sitting by regular Lincoln Center theatregoers, not hardcore Coast of Utopia fans.
I am still angry at Jack O'Brien for that travesty. My only hope (and it's probably too late now) is BBC turning it into a miniseries. It would kill the structure of Voyage, but it would more likely leave the characterisations intact.
I wish the National had scheduled the trilogy in the spring or autumn seasons, so I could have seen all three. Being in the summer season, I had to fly home two days after first preview of the first play, so there was no chance for Shipwreck and Salvage. I am eternally glad I saw Voyage there so I could fall in love, pick up the scripts when I was back in town the following year, and know that we in the US were deprived of the real work.
What kind of literature and what kind of life is the same question. - Tom Stoppard