Open Stage Project, Moscow

Directors – Alexei Razmakhov, Fillip Vinogradov

Under guidance of Dmitry Krymov

Participating artists – Tatiana Anastasova, Anya Kostrikova, Katya Zlaya, Denis Sazonov, Anya Amatuni, Juliana Laikova, Vlada Pomirkovanaya, Valya Reznikov, Sasha Barmenkov, Masha Kapraru

Duration – 1 h, 10 min

Age restriction – 18+

Gogol was staged by the ensemble artists from the workshop run by Eugeni Kamenkovich and Dmitry Krymov under the guidance of Golden Mask laureates designer Fillip Vinogradov and director Alexei Razmakhov at GITIS Russian Theatre Academy. The authors insist on defining their work as “a no-play”. The performance lacks actors or the all too familiar story about blacksmith Vakula and Demon. What it has is an ensemble of artists and a number of ironical and grotesque associations. The audience will not hear the text they know from school. But they will find out many interesting facts about Gogol and about themselves. “EVENINGS” present an opportunity to penetrate the artist’s mind and find out how a performance is created. This performance is about creativity and about the individual sensibilities. It demonstrates that creation is a complex process where the beginning contains the end and vice versa.

The authors: EVENINGS ON A FARM NEAR DIKANKA. CANCELLED is no doubt one of Gogol’s greatest masterpieces. Fortunately or unfortunately this work has nothing to do with our performance, although certain commonality can be discerned.

Our work is the story of one artist or, to be more precise, the story of one artist’s death. It is not so much a story as an investigation or a study of the story. Gogol himself put it more precisely: “There can be no greater delight than the delight of creating”. Kafka was yet more direct in his definition: “Art always embraces the entire personality and therefore it is essentially tragic”.

A more philosophic view is offered by Nietzsche: “Creativity! It offers salvation from suffering”. And Plato summarizes: “Everything that causes transition from nonbeing to being is art”. Meanwhile Leo Tolstoy believed that the most important component of art is the fire inside. Finally Lenin believed that “talent must be encouraged”.