On January 15, the news of the death of Vakhtang Kikabidze came.
Photo: Evgenia GUSEVA
We call Nana Bregvadze, a very warm and sincere person who emotionally, as befits a daughter from Georgia, is experiencing the loss of a close friend – Vakhtang Kikabidze.
Since the mid-60s and then for a decade and a half, they have performed together in the famous Orera ensemble. Then they each went their own way and built a solo career, but this did not prevent them from being friends.
– Buba died in hospital. Two weeks ago he was taken to intensive care. He was in a coma, from which he miraculously came out, although he was very weak, Nani Georgievna told us. No one believed that he would come back to life. He breathed with the help of a ventilator (artificial lung ventilation-Ed.). And suddenly the doctors said: the device is not needed, he breathes on his own. It was a miracle: there was hope. Marina (the adoptive daughter of Vakhtang Kikabidze – Ed.) told me: Nani, perhaps, will still come out …
Marina told him that I want to visit him, and if he doesn’t mind, blink. She could no longer speak. She blinked and smiled her trademark smile. But it didn’t happen… Today her director called: Buba left. We were prepared for this, but we expected a miracle and her love for life. Internally, he was a very strong man.
And incredibly talented, charming. He was not only an actor, singer, musician, he wrote poetry. He had a great sense of humor that always came to his rescue. He was kind, nice, so everyone loved him.
In general, all the guys from Orer (musicians of the Orera ensemble – Ed.) were wonderful. He was friends with everyone, but especially with Buba. He had a lovely wife, Ira, who was very smart. She brought us all together, on tour we were one.
There were different periods in Buba’s life, but by nature he was a cheerful and cheerful person. If he was in a bad mood, Ira knew what to do: “I will feed him now, and he will become the same cheerful Buba.” A year ago, Ira passed away. he was very worried …
In fact, he never forgave himself. That’s why it hurt so much. I was on hemodialysis for 8 years. Smoked like a locomotive. Drinking with friends, and a lot…
– It is normal for a Georgian to drink and smoke…
– He’s fine when he’s not on dialysis. And in his state it was impossible to drink or smoke. And she lived the way he liked … True, he lived a lot: next summer he would have turned 85 years old.
– With his illnesses, his body was strong enough.
– He lived for so many years, being a seriously ill person, because he continued to act. For him, the stage was both a medicine and an elixir that supported strength. After dialysis, he got on a plane, a five-hour flight, then a three-hour concert, standing onstage or backstage. All the other artists faded. And nothing for him. Once I even asked his wife: Ira, why are you torturing him? “Nani, this is his life. He sits in his house and dies, and as soon as the concert, he came back to life, ”he said.
In this sense, he was similar to Joseph Kobzon. I once jokingly told him: you are worse than Kobzon, in the sense that Joseph, even in serious condition, went on stage and gave great concerts. And for Kobzon, the scene was a cure. Both Buba and Kobzon loved their audience very much. Buba lived from this, he was happy and cheerful.
In autumn he acted. She gave 4-5 concerts in Israel. In September, he and I were in Baku at a concert in memory of Muslim Magomayev. In my opinion, Buba was loved in Azerbaijan no less than Magomayev – such was the reception.
And he got sick and didn’t get up when he recently canceled his concert. Maybe for the first time in my life. It was no longer Buba. After that, she ended up in the hospital, from where she did not leave. She had diseased kidneys, so she went on dialysis and her lungs were affected by smoking. She lit one cigarette after another. There was another misdiagnosis (according to the media, Kikabidze had a brain tumor – Ed.).
– Who took care of him when his wife left?
– Even when Ira was alive, but also sick, she and Buba were cared for by two wonderful women – nurses, household helpers. They stayed with Buba after Irina’s departure. Marina, Ira’s daughter from her first marriage, was constantly in touch. They are Konstantin and his wife Lena live in Canada. The grandchildren are already adults, each one has their own life, work… But they all adored Buba, and he adored them.
Today your son was supposed to fly in from Canada. But it turned out that he flew to the funeral.
– Surprisingly, a similar tragic story happened yesterday. Inna Churikova died. Like Vakhtang Kikabidze, People’s Artist of the USSR, loved by millions. And she was also in the hospital with a serious diagnosis. Her only child lives abroad. And she also flew to her mother just before her departure. When the plane landed in Moscow, she was informed that her mother had died. She didn’t have time…
– I am very worried about Inna Churikova, I knew her well. She so talented, smart, she came to Tbilisi on tour. We’ve found eachother. She is an extraordinary actress and person. And who I am truly friends with, this is Alisa Freindlich. I love her, she is very close to me in spirit. When she was sick, I almost went crazy, I was so worried about her. She called her all the time…
Vakhtang Kikabidze died: why he was so loved in Russia and what was forgiven him
Vakhtang Kikabidze died at the age of 85 (details)