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Entries / Samoylov V.V., (1813-1887), actor

Samoylov V.V., (1813-1887), actor

Categories / Art/Music, Theatre/Personalia

SAMOYLOV Vasily Vasilievich (1813, St. Petersburg - 1887, ibidem), actor. Brother of V.V. Samoylov, father of P.V. Samoylov. Graduated from the Mining Cadet Corps (1829) and the Institute of Forestry (1832). Served in the Ship-Timber Department of the Naval Ministry. In 1834, he made his debut as an opera singer at the Petersburg Bolshoy Theatre; in 1835, he started performing at Petersburg Court Opera, and in 1836-75 joined the drama troupe of the Alexandrinsky Theatre. He had a strong grasp on technique, was one of the most expressive actors of his time, performed a varied repertoire, and founded the so-called "Samoylov's tragedy." A virtuoso actor and theatrical analyst, and a master of transformation, he studied and developed all acting techniques available to him. He often sketched pictures as part of the process of developing a new character, and hundreds of his drawings preserved. He performed brilliantly in vaudevilles with costume-changes, and thematically often concentrated on the "small man." He created many characters for costume dramas and melodramas, including Cromwell in Cromwell by E. Raupach, Richelieu in Richelieu by E.G. Bulwer-Lytton, Peter the Great in The Batman by N.V. Kukolnik, and Ivan the Terrible in The Death of Ivan the Terrible by A.K. Tolstoy. Coming from the romantic tradition, he simplified many famous tragic roles, including Franz Moors in The Robbers by F. Schiller; and Shylock in The Merchant of Venice, Hamlet in the tragedy of the same name, and Lear in King Lear by W. Shakespeare. Performed in plays about peasant life, creating a gallery of characters for Russian "kitchen-sink" dramas, and performing in many Russian and foreign "cup-and-saucer" comedies. Among his best-performed parts are Krechinsky in The Marriage of Krechinsky by A.V. Sukhovo-Kobylin, Nozdrev and Chichikov in Dead Souls based on N.V. Gogol's book, Count Lyubin in The Provincial Lady by I.S. Turgenev, and the Pretender in Boris Godunov by Alexander Pushkin. After he left the Alexandrinsky Theatre, he performed in clubs and toured the provinces. He taught acting technique at the Petersburg Conservatory. In 1869-87, he lived at 8 Stremyannaya Street (The Samoylovs Memorial Apartment, memorial plaque installed). Originally buried at Novodevichye Cemetery, he was reburied in 1936 (his monument transferred) in a common grave with his first wife, ballet-dancer S.I. Samoylova, and his son from his second wife, actor P.V. Samoylov, at Necropolis of Artists.

References: Свободин П. Василий Васильевич Самойлов // Рус. старина. 1887. Т. 54, июнь. С. 785-792; Березарк И. Б. Василий Васильевич Самойлов. Л., 1948.

A. A. Kirillov.

Bulwer-Lytton Edward George
Gogol Nikolay Vasilievich
Kukolnik Nestor Vasilievich
Pushkin Alexander Sergeevich
Raupach Ernst-Benyamin-Solomon
Samoylov Pavel Vasilievich
Samoylov Vasily Vasilievich
Samoylova Sofia Ivanovna
Samoylova Vera Vasilievna
Schiller Friedrich
Shakespeare William
Sukhovo-Kobylin Alexander Vasilievich
Tolstoy Alexey Konstantinovich, Count
Turgenev Ivan Sergeevich

Stremyannaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 8

Свободин П. Васильевич Васильевич Самойлов // Рус. старина, 1887
Березарк И. Б. Василий Васильевич Самойлов. Л., 1948

The subject Index
Plekhanov State Mining Institute, St. Petersburg
Ministry of the Navy
Alexandrinsky Theatre
Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory
Novodevichye Cemetery
Novodevichye Cemetery
Necropolis of Artists