Photo: Tatiana Zhdanova
This is the first premiere on the Grand Stage. In addition, staged by the director and artistic director of the Theater. Gogol Anton Yakovlev. It is not surprising that there were many guests in the auditorium: from the rector of the Shchepkinsky Theater Institute Boris Lyubimov (father of the Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation Olga Lyubimova) to the rector of the Moscow Conservatory Alexander Sokolov (former -Minister of Culture). Not to mention the family of director Anton Yakovlev, who came in full force, including the older (paternal) sister of actress Alena Yakovleva and the beloved niece of actress Maria Kazakova. But even without taking into account the invited VIP people, it was noticeable: an intelligent, in a good sense of the word, old-fashioned Moscow audience gathered in the hall.
Anton Yakovlev staged a rather everyday and even personal story of Alexander Ostrovsky as a phantasmagoria and mystical drama.
Behind the phrase “inspired by” often hide interpretations free of direction. In this case, the director was careful with the original source, although he admitted that the classics must be interpreted vividly and up-to-date. Use of modern tools. For example, a video sequence: in the background of the stage, documentary material on the life of insects, specifically ants, is played in the background. The ants are in perpetual motion, fighting for a place under the sun. Like Ostrovsky’s characters. And suddenly a ray of light grows in the middle of the dark kingdom of the ant. This image, invented one hundred and fifty years ago by the publicist Dobrolyubov, ironically reveals itself in the play. Katerina Kabanova (actress Lyubov Konstantinova, who, by the way, played one of the main roles in the film “The Righteous”) is illuminated by a long-lasting spotlight. Ants swarm around the “bundle”.
Photo: Tatiana Zhdanova
The words of dear Katerina Boris “this is all our Russian, my dear, but still I will not get used to it in any way” could be taken out in one epigraph. In the fictional city of Kalinov, you will not find anything but rudeness and rudeness of evil insects. But you can try – destroy evil with the help of pest control. Katerina, her sister-in-law Varvara and Glasha’s servants are watering anthills with insecticides. But that doesn’t help much.
Literary critics of the previous century saw in The Thunderstorm a primitive battle between good and evil and a clash of instincts – predatory and herbivorous. Anton Yakovlev offers the characters of the play various temptations. For Katerina, forbidden love becomes a temptation. True, instead of a “ray of light” another feature suits him more: “I am all so sudden, all contradictory …”. Either she’s pious and fragile, or her basic instincts boil over in her. Lyubov Konstantinova, playing Katerina, succeeds more in tenderness and fragility than in passion and heroic “protest against boar concepts of morality”, as a result of which she unsuccessfully jumps into the Volga and hits her head. with the anchor No wonder, according to Anton Yakovlev, The Thunderstorm is not only a mystical drama, but also a tragic farce.
Each hero struggles with their temptations in ways that are sometimes ridiculous and funny, sometimes terrifying. Clerk Vanya Kudryash, judging by his appearance, wants to kill someone all the time: he looks like an inveterate urka, masterfully juggling a knife. He will not immediately recognize the refined actor Anton Lyzo in the role of Kudryash, the participant of music festivals Yuri Bashmet.
In the new performance, the center of everything is the actor. It is not surprising that there are so many successful acting jobs – Olga Naumenko is good at the role of Kabanikha. Millions of viewers know her for the role of Zhenya Lukashin’s cheated girlfriend Gali from the immortal “Irony of Fate”. And Naumenko is a wonderful theater actress. In the image of Kabanikha, she enters the scene as some kind of turbaned Shamakhan queen. Even in the children of her (Tikhon and Varvara), the appearance of a mother causes horror and amazement, and also a nervous tic. They punch and twist like puppets. But this is external. In fact, Kabanikha is an ordinary woman, somewhat similar to the heroine of the film “Due to family circumstances” (the role played by Galina Polskikh). She didn’t like her son-in-law very much. The boar can’t stand her daughter-in-law. And there is only one reason – maternal jealousy. And the mechanisms of manipulation are the same: “I have seen for a long time that I am a hindrance to you.”
Photo: Tatiana Zhdanova
Incredibly charming Andrei Rebenkov in the role of the blessed, dressed in Thekla rags. In Ostrovsky’s work, this character is designated as the wanderer Feklusha, he said that in Moscow “they began to harness the fiery serpent” … But Feklusha changed his sex. The director’s desire to occupy such an organic actor as much as possible is understandable. In the manner of a church recitative, Föckl-Rebenkov makes witty remarks, such as: “Paralysis will break a lover who has taken a lover.” “The one who fires the nurse will not be happy.” The audience is delighted with his reasoning.
The self-taught watchmaker Kuligin (actor Dmitry Vysotsky) is depicted as the heroic Icarus;
But the most unfortunate of all is Katerina’s husband, Tikhon Kabanov. Played by Mark Burlai, he is an absolute child, not adapted to life. So they demanded from him: get married and get married, and when he gets married, his mother eats. And all he needs to be happy is a bicycle and a lollipop.
In the play, the “important person in the city” is the merchant Wild, who, as we remember from school, also personifies the “dark kingdom”. In the performance, Wild (artist Oleg Gushchin) is not only not significant, but generally looks like an insert number, conditionally connected with the plot. He though he dances with a stuffed deer, though he frightens with a whip. But even such an appearance of an actor on the stage is justified by the director:
“This work can be represented both as a theater of the absurd and of fantastic realism. For me, in The Thunderstorm, the main theme is the temptation that everyone has in this play, as a way to get away from painful reality”, says Anton Yakovlev.