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HomeLatest NewsValentina Leontyeva failed her first television broadcast: “It was a monstrous sight....

Valentina Leontyeva failed her first television broadcast: “It was a monstrous sight. It looked like they were leading her to the gallows! .. “

Date: June 19, 2024 Time: 19:43:38

1992 TV presenter Valentina Leontyeva at home. Photo by Tatyana Kuzmina (TASS photo chronicle)


Valentina Leontyeva was probably the most famous female announcer in the history of Soviet television. I am 45 years old, and for me and millions of my peers (or those who are a little older or younger), her appearance was once the main joy of television: she presented “Visiting a Fairy Tale”, “Good night , children!” and sometimes “Alarm Clock”, three favorite programs of Soviet children. There was also the program “From the bottom of my heart”, but the children found it terribly boring. And I did not want to share Aunt Valya with adults, I wanted to see her in the company of Stepashka and Khryusha.

But the deafening all-Union glory and love could not be. Because Valentina Leontieva failed her television debut with a bang. It was in the mid-50s in the courtyard, she was a young actress who came with her husband from the Tambov Theater to seek her fortune in Moscow. There, in the facilities of the Casa del Actor, a kind of “actor exchange” took place, where artists and directors from all over the country met and communicated. There you could get a good role or, on the contrary, find new faces for a new performance. But Leontyeva was unlucky there: as soon as the directors found out that a young husband and director was going with her, they instantly lost all interest.

1960 Announcer of the Central Television of the USSR State Radio and Television Valentina Leontyeva with a Tepa doll during the recording of the program “Good evening, children!”. Photo: Valery Genre-Rote/TASS

But on television, which was then in infancy, he was luckier. There they organized a contest for announcers, and she passed. Only the position of announcer was not on her personnel list, and she was hired as an assistant director. Only a few months later she had the opportunity to go on the air. The studio guest was an English journalist from the BBC Corporation. This broadcast was watched by Irakli Andronikov, and later he recalled: “It was a monstrous sight. A terrified young woman appeared in midair, her eyes turned inward. She was reading the lines on the screen in her brain, not understanding anything she was saying. It seemed like they were taking her to the scaffold of hers!” Against this background, a professional, relaxed Englishwoman accustomed to the camera looked like a goddess …

TV announcers Anna Shilova, Igor Kirillov and Valentina Leontyeva (from left to right) on the popular TV show Blue Light, 1974. Photo by Vitaly Sozinov and Valery Khristoforov /TASS Photo Chronicle/.

Leontieva herself wrote in her memoirs “Declaration of Love” that as soon as the broadcast ended, the enraged chairman of the radio committee called the studio and said: “So that I am no longer on the air!” Leontiev “shed tears”, and they took pity on her: thanks to the intercession of the famous broadcaster Olga Vysotskaya, she was left at her work. The second transfer was easier, and after a while, having passed through the Vysotskaya school, Leontiev herself turned professional. But she added that if later, in the mid-50s, she received an interesting offer in the theater, she would return to the actress. And I am grateful to fate for the fact that this proposal was not received from anyone.


He was born on August 1, 1923 in Petrograd. Her real name is Alevtina and her last name is Torsons (her father had Swedish roots). She then took her mother’s last name. And her father was buried in 1942: he died of starvation and sepsis. “I was carrying a dead father on a sled and I saw hundreds of the same sleds,” she later recalled. “We don’t cry, we help each other.” And in an interview with KP she said: “Those things harden. Only Zvezdochka cigarettes saved us, children: her mother taught them to smoke so that they would be less hungry … “

Valya herself first worked as a nurse, and then was evacuated to the village of Novoselki in the Ulyanovsk region (there, many years later, she would end her days). She then studied at a theater studio, and then there was a short acting and television career, to which she devoted her whole life (“I was married to him,” Valentina Mikhailovna once said). In fact, she was not only an announcer, but also a journalist: she took dozens of interviews, prepared materials for her own programs, conducted them without a role, traveled around the country with a film crew …

The great director Mikhail Romm said of her: “I feel the need to respond when he addresses me, and to say goodbye if he says goodbye to me. And if I watch TV alone, then I do it. Millions of viewers could say the same. At the same time, he insisted that in no case should she be called a star: she was smart, reserved and modest. Once I bought an expensive suit made of fashionable knitted fabric, the GUM saleswoman let her into the fitting room without standing in line, although there were a lot of people in the store. Disgruntled customers of hers hissed after her. And then, when Leontieva left, one of these customers said in embarrassment: “Oh, is that you? I’m sorry, I didn’t recognize you.” She became terribly uncomfortable. “I almost never wore this ill-fated costume, in any case, I never appeared in it on the screen. Suddenly, one of the customers will see me and tell his friends how the announcer bought the suit.

Valentina Mikhailovna Leontieva in 1992. Photo: Tatyana Kuzmina/TASS Newsreel

Her little son couldn’t understand why everyone greeted her when she took him to kindergarten in the morning. She kept asking, “Mom, are you the most important?” – “No, Mitusha.” “So the most famous?” – “What are you, Mitenka!” “Why is everyone greeting you?” “Because they are educated people. I also greet everyone”. Then the glory of his mother began to irritate him. He refused to watch her on TV: he waited for the cartoon to start showing on Good night, children, and only then went up to the screen. And once burst into tears at Sergei Obraztsov’s puppet theater: the children stuck to their mother, did not let her in. Mitya shouted: “Let’s go home! I don’t want to go to the theater, you are not my mother, you are “everyone “!


Unfortunately, the relationship with his son did not improve. “Scum! He never said a kind word about his mother, although she did everything for him! – the presenter Tatyana Sudets said openly on a TV show. However, not everyone is so ruthlessly disposed towards Dmitry. There is another version, which was voiced by Leontyeva’s niece in an interview with KP Valentina Mikhailovna suffered from a monstrous guilt complex that completely surrenders her to television and other people’s children And she managed (it happens) to convince her son that he is a bad mother, and he himself believed in it…

The ending was quite sad. Valentina Mikhailovna was seriously injured – she broke her femoral neck. Having healed a little, she exchanged an apartment with her son and went to Novoselki. Nobody needed her on TV anymore: the screen does not like elderly and sick presenters (in general, her time ended in the late 80s and early 90s, when all her programs were closed one after another ). She lived in Novoselki for several years and then, in 2007, she ended her old age.

Ulyanovsk. Monument to TV presenter Valentina Leontyeva on Goncharova street in front of the puppet theater. Photo ITAR-TASS / Artur Rogov

Journalists, including KP correspondents, periodically reminded of Leontieva, but she could not please them in any way. On the eve of her 80th birthday, she said very sadly that she was practically blind, she doesn’t watch TV, but she listens (and then only news and programs about animals). “I take care of the house, I order, I like to play solitaire. But my health is not very good, so I don’t leave the house. And it’s bad with my eyes, before I read with a magnifying glass, but now I don’t see anything at all. Friends call, only they forgot about me on TV, despite the fact that I gave him my whole life. They didn’t even congratulate me on my birthday, but I was looking forward to it…”

In 2007, at the news of his death, the hearts of a large number of people shuddered. And television, of course, remembered her: since then, a good dozen heartbreaking documentaries have been shot about Valentina Mikhailovna. As always, they were done too late.

* This website provides news content gathered from various internet sources. It is crucial to understand that we are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information presented Read More

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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