Title of the article:



Мaksim L. Fedorov

Information about the author/authors

Maksim L. Fedorov — PhD in Philology, Senior Researcher, A. M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 a, 121069 Moscow, Russia. ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6540-1767. E-mail: maksimfyodorov@yandex.ru


History of Arts




Vol. 56


pp. 213–225


December 08, 2019

Date of publication

June 28, 2020



Index UDK

7.036 + 821.161.1

Index BBK

85.333(2) + 83.3(2Рос=Руc)


In 1936, the play “Bogatyri” was staged at Kamerny Theater, the text of which was written by Demyan Bedny with A.Y. Tairov as the director. Basing on the material of previously unknown archival documents and periodicals the paper restores the details of creative process preceding the production. Tairov, in view of the anniversary of A.P. Borodin, turns to the forgotten opera of the composer and asks Demyan Bedny to change the libretto. On the basis of director's notes and rehearsal diary the author reconstructs the chronicle of the Kamerny Theatre`s work on the production and reveals the performance`s super-task. Drawing on archival documents, the study is to show what purpose the proletarian poet had in mind while changing the forgotten libretto. This production was destined to become one of the brightest episodes of the campaign against formalism unfolded in the country at that time. Upon the performance`s closing the authorities initiated a wide discussion about patriotism and historicity on the Soviet stage. 


Demyan Bedny, Tairov, Kamerny Theater, struggle against formalism, archive, theater history, Soviet drama.


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2 Bednyi Dem'ian. Gde tsel' zhizni? (Otvet Pole Rybakovoi) [Where is the purpose of life? (Answer to Polya Rybakova) ]. In: Bednyi Dem'ian. Polnoe sobranie sochinenii [Complete works]. Moscow, Leningrad, Gosudarstvennoe izdatel'stvo Publ., 1929. Vol. XIII. 350 p. (In Russian)

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