“Theater is a perspective from the another floor”

This photo was taken by Andrei Larin almost a year ago, but it transfers the best the energy that Viktor Panov has when you meet him personally: fearlessness, determination, pain for his native region and the desire not to give up for nothing. Basically this, but not only, was discussed at a press conference at the Youth Theater on July, 2. Although, officially it was the press conference, I would rather call it a cozy conversation between journalists and bloggers over a glass of cool morse (berry juice).

The next season is very important for the theater: the 25th Street Theater Festival, the 15th European Spring Festival, the 40th anniversary of the theater will be held, and the anniversary of Victor Panov himself, the artistic director of the theater, will be celebrated.

Let’s talk a little about the numbers. In the 2017-2018 season, 182 performances were played at the Youth Theater, 88 of which were for children; in sum, a small theatrical mansion was visited by more than 28,000 guests. That season turned out to be very productive for the theater and hard for the actors, because they always play at the limit of their abilities. Until now, I can not forget the sensual monologue of Eugenia Pletnyova from “The Brothers Karamazov”. First and foremost, Viktor Panov wants to present to the public every actor in the coming season full of anniversaries and arrange a bénéfice for them, which will last for a whole year.

Now the theater is on holiday, but in August rehearsals and work on premiers will be resumed. This year we will see performances by Nikolai Dreyden, Maxim Sokolov, Ilya Moshchitsky, Iskandar Sakayev, Ilsur Kazakbaev, and Giuliano Di Capua, and by the summer Anton Adasinsky will stage a children’s play. It’s hard to imagine what the avant-garde theater and the most talented directors are preparing for us, is not it?

Фото: Молодёжный театр
Photography: the Youth Theater

In addition to all of the above, in my opinion, an important policy will be conducted, in a direct and figurative sense.

The theater has always openly stated about the small financing of culture, and in general about the insufficient attention to this important area from the government’s side at all levels; but it is the culture (theaters, museums, libraries, studios, art spaces, etc.) that is responsible for the emergence of an educated, intelligent and comprehensively developed person. Valery Fokin, a Russian director, actor and teacher, notes that in Russia there are many dead theaters that need to be revived; it does not matter how large and famous the theater is; if the same 40 spectators came to the theater to get aesthetic pleasure and broaden their horizons knowingly, this strengthens the theater several times more than the income received.

With the development of capitalism in Russia, people are increasingly talking about incomes, expenditures and  they pay more attention to numbers in general; almost nothing is said about the creative component of this “business” today. Any Little Prince, breathing creativity and not representing his life without a stormy imagination, is suffering from a headache because of an asteroid business man, to which the culture is about to join. As a result, there is a misunderstanding of works of art and theater: both the achievements of the last century, and modern trends with the use of the latest technology; and it’s not that people are not specialists in these areas – no, not at all. A human being independently chooses to include or freeze the imagination and the creative principle in himself, he decides whether he wants to see not just a black square, but something more than a geometric figure, it’s only in his power to distribute his incomes and invest in his development and go to the theater, a museum or spend all of a penny over the weekend in restaurants.

In the upcoming anniversary year, the Youth Theater will strive to make the theater more accessible to everyone, and especially students, more than ever before. This concerns in particular the concerts and performances of the festival “European Spring”, because it was always a social project – for example, in the spring of 2019 Nino Katamadze will come to the festival. It is planned to restore the play “If You don’t Love, Do not Listen” based on the tales of Boris Shergin and Stepan Pisahov, in which, most likely, only students of the theater will participate, which will make the production even closer to the young spectator.

The theater alley will help to make the theater closer to any resident and guest of Arkhangelsk, the idea of ​​creation of which was mentioned by Viktor Panov. It will take the section of the Loginov alley from the theater to the Embankment, it will be cleaned, there will appear objects related to the theater, similar to those that appeared during the festival of street theaters several years ago (remember the high chair on which everything is still climb to make unusual photos?).

By the way, about the sensational festival of street theaters. Next year, at last, the city will again be excited by different sculptures and objects, because the festival is a time when it is possible and necessary to forget, to give flight to their desires and fears, and most importantly – to the imagination and “childishness” that we lack in gray everyday life. It remains to hope and believe that these two features will survive not only a week before the day of the city, but they will stay with us for a long time.

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