Thanks to the renowned “Maly Theatre of Russia”, the Moscow audience met with Stavropol Drama Theater. “Maly” gave its colleagues the scene for two fine performances: September 3, 2016 a play A.Sumbatova-Ugine “Falcons and Ravens” was held, and September 4, 2016 – Lermontov’s “Masquerade”. Moscow theater-goer, trusting authoritative recommendation of “Maly”, went to look at the guests from the south and was not disappointed, stavropol-people brought here the same spirit of the Russian theater, which we, the Muscovites, starting to lose in the diversity of the proposed actual installations and shows on theatrical themes.
Stavropol Academic Drama Theater named after M. Y. Lermontov appeared in 1845, just 32 years later the foundation of the Stavropol city (1777). The theater repertoire includes 25 plays. The director of the theater – Luganskii E.I. “Our actors are not simply say the text, they are going through it,” – he says.
On the eve of the play a presentation of Stavropol Academic Theater took place in Memorial Apartment A.I. Sumbatov-Ugine, which is under the authority of the Maly Theater.
The theater, its history and contemporary content presented by Director of the theater Evgeny Ivanovych Luganskii, National actress of the Russian Federation Natalia Pavlovna Zubkova, Merited Artist of the Russian Federation Michael Nowakov, Honorary Worker of Arts of the Stavropol region Irina Barannikova, actor Alexander Koshelevskyi.
Start of perfomance was promising, because the direction and the actors said sincerely and in unison about the mission to preserve the quality and traditions of the Russian theater, the commitments in relation to the public, about finding a good contemporary drama. It was noticeable that the actors are fully involved in the creative interpretation of the theater productions. “Our actors are not simply say the text, they are going through it,” – said the director of the theater.
Honor and praise to guests because they reminded us of the almost forgotten by the general public playwright and actor Prince A.I. Sumbatov serving at the Maly Theater under the pseudonym Ugine, and then headed the theater. “Theatre … – he wrote – is an artistic response to public inquiries by the realization on the stage in human beings the most complex conflicts of public and private psyche.”
The play “The Falcons and Ravens’ A. Sumbatov-Ugine, in collaboration with V.I. Nemirovich-Danchenko was written in 1885, but was banned by the censor to the showing in the imperial theaters, and the premiere of the Stavropol theater in reading N.P. Zubkova took place at the theater on April 30, 2016. The audience received the play well, “it was a full house.” The play is modern, it affected the level of human relations tells the audience about love, but about the destructive power of passion.
Second performance is the author’s reading by the National Artist of Russian Federation Y. I. Eremin, “Masquerade”, written by twenty years old M.Y. Lermontov. And the music of A. Khachaturian sounds on the background of the proposed visual line completely different than anywhere else. After watching this beautiful and profound statement there is an irresistible desire to discuss it, even somewhere bet on Lermontov’s reading. Because there is a subject for discussion, there is a bright artistic meaning. Exactly after these performances avid theater-goers spend hours comparing the scenes and decisions implemented in different theaters.
The arrival of the theater from Stavropol to Moscow was initiated by Tamara Anatolevna Mikhailova, director of the Maly Theater. Thank her very much for this.
By the way, on a return visit Maly Theatre will bring in Stavropol “Wolves and Sheep” (07-08 September, 2016) and the “Heirs of Rabourdin” (09-10 September). Stavropol viewers will be satisfied given the similarity of theaters’ spirits . In the application to the description of the tour Stavropol Drama Theater, we offer readers learn with light thoughts of those who create today the glory of the Russian stage. Read the interview, it is a sincere involvement and deep opinions.
EV: Natalia Pavlovna, please tell me what you feel at the end of the tour?
NP: You know, we can see a pleasant attitude of the Moscow audience to us. We have been on this stage – the stage of the Maly Theater, it is a great pride for us. It is pleasantly and gives strength to us in the future. It’s a lot of impressions, a lot of new great emotions …. Each theater wants to go to the capital, to somehow be inspired by something. We were very well accepted here by the viewer. We hope that our friendship will continue with the Maly theater in the future. They are now coming to us, they have been with us, we are looking forward to them.
EV: We have seen that during the performance you are sitting in the audience and watch the performances, not the first time. Is it, perhaps, each time different?
NP: Different, because playing live actors, it’s not a movie. Every time a new show is some kind of new experience ….
EV: Your play “The Falcons and Ravens” satisfied you?
NP: You know the director is quite difficult to satisfy, because you look a little different view on your performance. You see some bugs or something else. Overall I was happy with the performance yesterday. You see, we set A. Sumbatov-Ugine like Sumbatov-Ugine, and did not want to bring something so super-today, super-modern, so to speak. The play itself (I’m talking about yesterday’s performance) is filled with a purely Russian character, Russian collisions, love collisions. You know, put it in another way, perhaps, it is certainly possible, but we do not set ourselves such a task. We were in line with the Russian, the Russian theater. Unfortunately, our Russian-spirit is out here of the theater, many of our theaters. It is a pity, because we have something to be proud of.
We came to USA, where we had a small tour with one performance, and as we have assumed and what talked about us, has allowed us to understand that our theatrical creativity part still ahead of the rest. It was in the early 1990s. Then there was the feeling that we are losing something, that something out. That behind some external interests some abstruse, so to speak, we lose our decisions. It should be mandatory, the theater must be different, but we can not lose our, what our precious, beloved. It also can not be lost what we are proud of, what living all this time theater-goers. So I’m on such positions.
EV: I think no one is interested in us out of our culture, outside our school. We are what we are.
NP: Yes, we are what we are. It is important.
EV: Even at the first meeting, preliminary to your actions, I realized that you are all involved in the creative process- and you, and the director and the actors, and all meaningful.
EI: The actors have, as you see, are not preparing role, they live it. This is what I call a living theater. When there is live theater then the audience feels it. There are the souls of men, a man enters the scene and throws itself from within. And if this happens, if that is what he does, comes to the viewer, it is returned to the actor. Because, if not, the theater does not exist, it is their feedback. The actor, who just plays a role, not living it, in the theater practically can not work. So, alas, sometimes it happens. This is the selection.
EV: It is often said that the viewer needs nudity, strong language, obscene jokes. Does your audience want it?
EI: I think our spectators can not be prepared to this. Despite the difficulties of an economic nature, because it became really difficult. It is easy to attract the viewer by “nude” or frivolous. We don’t take this kind of plays. We are concerned first and foremost Man. In all its manifestations, good – the love to mother, love to woman, love to Homeland. That is we are concerned and in the repertory more such plays. True life is not always interesting on stage.
EV: Does the viewer want something sublime? Does he want to come and relax?
EI: Yes, he wants sublime, and what will care him. Because right now, it seems to me, sensual theater is interesting. In me it has to awaken the senses and evoke desirable “good feelings”, as Pushkin said. So all these low feelings not enough. And you can see, we somehow live, and our repertoire is interesting.
EV: These are , I dare say, the traditions of Russian theater.
EI: Yes, you saw it yesterday. I think that’s why our yesterday’s performance was interesting (“Falcons and Ravens” – editor’s note), because yesterday all the traditions of the Russian theater were.
EV: It has long been no such. Of course, we have Maly or Fraternityo on Taganka, but …
EI: By the way, I think Maly Theatre is one of the best theaters in Russia, but it is my opinion. The other person may be have another thoughts and desires. For me Maly Theatre, honestly say, at a time when I was in college, did not seem the best. We, the young, attracted to Efros, in the Taganka Theater and etc. But now, when they came to us last year and I saw a play by Bulgakov, this shook me. I think this is one of the best theater for my perception, as I understand it, and this is one of the best theaters in Russia. So I have changed opinion.
EV: You are trying to grow stage directors, as it does, for example, Nikolai Hubenko?
EI: We raise young stage directors. And we had a school of acting at SKFU, but, unfortunately, this year it closed. We have 22 actors – our graduates, so that they come to the first course and almost from the first course have practical work on the stage. I think this is the best training the actor for his profession.
EV: Certainly so. Why did you bring here “Masquerade”? EI: It seemed to me that this is a completely different setting than in Moscow, at the Maly Theater. There is another vision of “Masquerade”, Eremin’s. EV: Do you emotionally close to Lermontov?
EI: Yes, definitely. This is – one of the favorite. Poetry of Lermontov – like a space. It is interesting, and his whole life is short, but bright and talented.
EV: I carefully watched the show today, I am also very fond of Lermontov. Did you notice the reaction of the audience?
EI: Such a silence was in the hall. I always watch show from behind the scenes, listening and looking for reaction. We won a grant and brought “Hamlet” to Ankara. We were among 60 theaters, the only from Russia. And, of course, I had the idea of the Turkish nation, which it is. And when I heard the hall was quiet: a pin drop – will be heard, I heard artists breaths. At the end of the play the Turks came to fraternize on stage and take autographs. I thought why should they get these autographs, when we’re leaving tomorrow in Russia and never come in Turkey. The next year (it was 2015), we have received two invitations to festivals in Turkey, but the situation is such that you will not go there. But I want to say that the real, lived the life of an artist on the stage – it involves the viewer even without knowing the language.
EV: Are you happy with the tour, in general?
EI: We are very satisfied with the trip because of the 171 years of our existence, from our 172 season, the first time over the years the theater has visited such a renowned, the Imperial, the best scene of the best theater. Of course, we are very grateful to directors of theater and director Tamara Anatolievna Mikhailova. And artistic director Yuri Mefodevich Solomin that gave the opportunity to show our art.