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Entries / Evreinov N.N., (1879-1953), director

Evreinov N.N., (1879-1953), director

Categories / Art/Music, Theatre/Personalia

EVREINOV Nikolay Nikolaevich (1879-1953), playwright, director, theorist, theatre historian. Lived in St. Petersburg in 1892-1925. Graduated from the School of Law (1901), mastered composition under N.A. Rimsky-Korsakov at the Conservatory (after 1901). In 1901-10, he served in the Ministry of Transport Communications; in 1906 he also started working as an editor at the Novy Put newspaper and writing plays. For the 1907/08 and 1911/12 seasons, together with baron N.V. Osten-Drizen and others, Evreinov prepared and arranged performances at the Old Theatre, and experiment at reconstructing past theatrical systems. He worked as a director for the Literary and Artistic Theatre Society (1908), the Komissarzhevskaya Theatre (1908-09), and the Merry Theatre for the Aged, which he established together with F.F. Komissarzhevsky (1909-10). He was mainly attracted to slapstick and caricature plays, establishing the idea of self-sufficient theatricality. In 1910-14, he was the main director at the Distorting Mirror parody theatre (their co-operation lasted quite some time, he staged about 100 plays and miniatures, including ones he wrote), and regularly performed at the Brodyachaya Sobaka (Stray Dog) cabaret-theatre and the Prival Komediantov (The Comedians' Halt) with burlesque musical improvisations. Evreinov wrote many articles and over 20 books of theory and history of the theatre, of which the following were published in St. Petersburg (Petrograd): Introduction to Monodrama (1909), Theatre as It Is (1913), Theatre for Oneself (in three parts, 1915-17), and Drama's Origin (1921). He developed original theories that he called "theatrical instinct" and "monodrama". During his Petersburg period, Evreinov published three volumes of his own drama works (1908; 1914; 1923). In 1907-11, he guest-lectured at drama courses given by M.A. Rigler-Voronkova. In 1917-20, he lived and worked in Georgia and Ukraine. Upon his return to Petrograd in 1920, he staged one of the most grandiose mass revolutionary performances in history, The Capture of the Winter Palace. In 1925, he left for Paris and worked as a playwright, script writer, and director, and wrote his memoirs. He staged performances in Paris for M.N. Kuznetsova's Russian Opera, at the emigrant miniatures theatre The Bat and the Strolling Comedians, at the Prague National Theatre, and at the Russian Drama Theatre. A major portion of Evreinov's literary works has not yet been published. In 1998, Evreinov's memoirs, At the School of Wit, were published in Moscow for the first time. As of 2003, work is underway on the publishing of his collected works.

References: Крыжицкий Г. К. directorские портреты. М.; Л., 1928; Кашина-Евреинова А. А. Н. Н. Евреинов в мировом театре ХХ века. Париж, 1964.

A. A. Kirillov.

Evreinov Nikolay Nikolaevich
Komissarzhevsky Fedor Fedorovich
Kuznetsova Maria Nikolaevna
Osten-Drizen Nikolay Vasilievich, Baron
Rigler-Voronkova M.A.
Rimsky-Korsakov Nikolay Andreevich

Крыжицкий Г. К. Режиссерские портреты. М.; Л., 1928
Кашина-Евреинова А. А. Н. Н. Евреинов в мировом театре ХХ века. Париж, 1964

The subject Index
Law School
Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory
Ministry of Transport Communications
Novy Put (New Way), newspaper
Starinny (Old) Theatre
Literary and Artistic Society Theatre
Komissarzhevskaya Theatre
Stray Dog, Cabaret
Comedians Halt, Cabaret