Katrusia, a high-spirited girl who is more interested in helping her widowed blacksmith father with his tasks than in her needlepoint or other pursuits that her father encourages. For Katrusia life is idyllic, life in her small village is cheerful and carefree, she has the attention of a courageous young man, and she and her father have a special relationship.

One day a group of raiding Tartar mercenaries threaten the village but Katrusia’s father foils their attack and one of the Tartars is captured. Overcome by compassion, Katrusia frees him. However, the Tartar General is not content and the Tartars return to take revenge upon the village and kidnap Katrusia. Hoping to win favour with the Sultan, the Tartars take her to his palace to be offered as a gift. twitter down The ruler is nothing more than a comical boy-king who barely has a grasp of his kingdom.

As Katrusia is being prepared to be part of the Sultan’s harem, the Tartar she had freed earlier repays her kind deed. He gives her a horseshoe her father has sent to let Katrusia know that help is on its way. Katrusia’s wit and courage lead to the ultimate freedom of her people and the peaceful reconciliation of all, celebrated in Shumka’s famous energetic “Hopak”.