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Entries / Variety Theatre

Variety Theatre

Categories / Art/Music, Theatre/Stage, Cabaret, Variety Shows

VARIETY THEATRE (from 1991, The St. Petersburg Variety Theatre; 27 Bolshaya Konushennaya Street) started life as the public theatre (presenting the German troupe of Eckenberg I.-K.) operating in these premises in 1723-33. In 1796 Filipp Demut built a hotel there, Demutov Inn, with two concert halls. In 1880s, the Big Hall became the home for the Fantasia Theatre (it produced mostly Italian comic operas; the curtain design by Vasily Vereshchagin) and the Small Hall housed The News Theatre (touring companies, concerts, charitable shows, etc.) Before 1934, different troupes and entertainers performed in the two halls. In 1934-39, the New Theatre of Young Spectators (artistic director Boris Zon) performed here, and in 1937 - The Puppet Theatre of Young Spectators (artistic director Evgeny Demmeni). The Leningrad Variety Theatre opened in 1939 without permanent troupe (artistic director I.M. Gerschman). From 1939 the stage was given to the Leningrad Variety and Miniatures Theatre (from 1944, The Theatre of Miniatures) led by Arkady Raykin. Leonid Utesov, Nina Ruslanova, Alexander Vertinsky, and Makhmud Esambaev performed here in different years. In 1946-68 the Variety Theatre had its own orchestra (artistic directors Mikhail Korik and I.S. Zhak, from 1953 - Alexey Semenov, and in 1959-68 - Anatoly Badkhen). The music for performances was written by Nikita Bogoslovsky, Matvey Blanter, Boris Mokrousov, Alexander Kolker, Andrey Eshpai, et al. The authors include V.S. Polyakov, Mikhail Zoshchenko, Evgeny Schwartz, Mikhail Zhvanetsky, and Mikhail Mishin. The building was renovated in 1995 after the fire of 1992. Since 1996 the Theatre's artistic director has been Tatyana Savchenko. In December 2001, the Variety Theatre was named after Arkady Raikin.

References: Уварова Е. Д. Эстрадный театр: миниатюры, обозрения, мюзик-холлы (1917-1945). М., 1983. С. 265-273; Райкин А. И. Воспоминания. СПб., 1993.

Y. N. Kruzhnov.

Badkhen Anatoly Semenovich
Blanter Matvey Isaakovich
Bogoslovsky Nikita Vladimirovich
Demmeni Evgeny Sergeevich
Demut Filipp Yakob
Eckenberg J.K.
Esambaev Makhmud Alisultanovich
Eshpay Andrey Yakovlevich
Gerschman I.M.
Kolker Alexander Naumovich A3570
Korik Mikhail G.
Mishin M.A.
Mokrousov Boris Andreevich
Muravsky Peter Lukich
Polyakov V.S.
Raykin Arkady Isaakovich
Ruslanova Lidia Andreevna
Savchenko Tatyana Konstantinovna
Schwarz Evgeny Lvovich
Semenov Alexsey Vladimirovich
Utesov Leonid Osipovich (real name Weisbein Lazar Iosifovich)
Vereschagin Vasily Vasilievich
Vertinsky Alexander Nikolaevich
Zhak I.S.
Zhvanetsky Mikhail Mikhailovich
Zon Boris Wulfovich
Zoschenko Mikhail Mikhailovich

Bolshaya Konyushennaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 27

Райкин А. И. Воспоминания. СПб., 1993
Уварова Е. Д. Эстрадный театр: миниатюры, обозрения, мюзик-холлы (1917-1945). М., 1983

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