”The Fair at Sorochyntsi" by Nikolai Gogol is a short story set in a Ukrainian village in 1800. A man travels with his daughter and wife to a fair to sell some of their belongings. Their lives are quickly turned upside down when a young cossack asks for the hand of the daughter and a demon makes an appearance. The story mixes the macabre with humor, yet with romance at its core. "The Fair at Sorochyntsi" was also turned into a comic opera by Modest Mussorgsky, though unfinished and completed by others after his death.
Ukrainian-born writer and dramatist Nikolai Gogol (1809-1852) is considered one of the most prominent figures in Russian literature. His unconventional works are often touched by folklore or a hint of the unusual, providing the reader with surprising turns and characters. Gogol has been attached to a range of different literary styles, including Russian literary realism and even surrealism. His stories include the short story "The Nose" and the famous satirical novel Dead Souls. Gogol's works have inspired numerous stage, film and television adaptations including the movie Inspector General (1949), based loosely on his play with the same name.