Monument to Provincial Actors

Academic Drama Theater in Vladimir, Russia
Academic Drama Theater in Vladimir, Russia

History of the Academic Drama Theater

The ancient city of Vladimir is a large industrial and cultural center of Central Russia. Vladimir is a theatrical city, it has 2 large theatrical stages: a drama theater and a philharmonic society. It is located at the Golden Gate on the street. Dvoryanskaya, 4.

It was founded in 1848 by the provincial actor Ivan Lavrov, who convinced the governor of the city P.M. Donaurov to find money to build a “wooden booth for the theater.” The interior was very simple: a wooden stage for the stage, 8 rows of roughly knocked down chairs, and behind them benches for the audience are simpler. There was also a governor’s box in the theater.

Academic Drama Theater, old photo
Academic Drama Theater, old photo
Entrance to the theater
Entrance to the theater

The first hastily erected building quickly fell into disrepair and in 1851 it was replaced by a wooden 2-storey mansion right at the Golden Gate.

The basis of the future drama theater in Vladimir was a small troupe of the best graduates of theater schools in Russia. The idea of ​​creating the troupe belonged to the wife of the leader of the local nobility O.M. Ogareva. A.M. Chitau. She was the former primate of the St. Petersburg Alexandria Theater, most fully revealed her talent in the plays of A.N. Ostrovsky (“The Poor Bride”, “Don’t Sit in Your Sleigh”, “Poverty is Not a Vice”) and became the artistic director of the theater in Vladimir.

The funds for the creation of the theater were collected by wealthy residents of the city. The theater quickly gained popularity and soon began touring. The first tour was successfully held in St. Petersburg on the stage of the Alexandrinka. But soon A.M. Chitau moved to Moscow and the development of the theater was suspended for several decades. The theater became ordinary and provincial.

A.M. Chitau
A.M. Chitau
Actors - O.A. Pravdin, A.P. Lensky, G.N. Fedotova
Actors – O.A. Pravdin, A.P. Lensky, G.N. Fedotova
Figures on the theater building
Figures on the theater building

Since 1905, the theater was transferred to the People’s House.

On its stage performances were given based on the plays of A.N. Ostrovsky, L.N. Tolstoy, M. Gorky, F. Schiller and others, and famous actors of the pre-revolutionary period performed (OA Pravdin, A.P. Lensky, G.N. Fedotova, etc.).

With the outbreak of the First World War in 1914, the theater was temporarily closed, and the People’s House was given to refugees. After the 1917 revolution, the building was transferred to the Drama Vladimir Theater, which was housed there until 1971. In November 1971, a new theater building was built from glass and concrete, which was unusual for that time. The project was executed by architects G. Gorlyshkov, V. Davidenko, N. Shabalina and I. Bylinsky.

Old photo Academic Drama Theater
Old photo Academic Drama Theater
People's House
People’s House

The specificity of the building is emphasized by sculptures of buffoons, musicians, dancers. They are made of white stone and stylized in the spirit of stone carving of the 12th century (sculptor Yu. Aleksandrov). The auditorium is designed for 800 seats. The building is in perfect harmony with ancient monuments, which are beautifully reflected in its mirrored facades.

On September 18, 2018, at the walls of the Vladimir Academic Drama Theater, the sculptural composition “Schastlivtsev and Neschastlivtsev” was unveiled. The monument is dedicated to provincial actors. These are the heroes of the comedy A.N. Ostrovsky “Forest”.

Sculptor Igor Alekseevich Chernoglazov. Monument to Provincial Actors
Sculptor Igor Alekseevich Chernoglazov
Lucky and Unhappy. Monument to Provincial Actors
Lucky and Unhappy. Monument to Provincial Actors
Two bronze figures of itinerant actors are depicted with staffs and a traveling bag.

The appearance of the characters in front of the theater is timed to coincide with the 170th anniversary of the Vladimir Drama Theater. The author of the composition is the Honored Artist of Russia, the leading sculptor of the Vladimir region Igor Alekseevich Chernoglazov.

The sculptural composition symbolizes the creative powers of all artists from the provinces, especially since the provincial actor Ivan Lavrov stood at the origins of the theater in Vladimir.

And what is tinder “for luck” in the sculptural composition? Igor Chernoglazov believes: “I think, just masks. Merry, most likely, so that there is happiness in life, and sad, so that troubles and sorrows bypass the house.”

Sculptural composition Lucky and Neschastlivtsev. Monument to Provincial Actors
Sculptural composition Lucky and Unhappy, Monument to Provincial Actors
Sculpture Lucky and Unhappy. Monument to Provincial Actors
Sculpture Lucky and Unhappy. Monument to Provincial Actors
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