KONSTANTIN VASILIEVICH SKVORTSOV
Born in 1939, Konstantin Skvortsov is a Russian author of twenty dramatic pieces in verse, which display a merry-go-round of human characters and types, draw fine psychological portraits of historic personalities and evolve in dynamic plots full of dramatic twists. The language of his plays is both musical and colloquial. They reveal a profound understanding of theater mechanics and therefore attract both the director and actor alike to realize their artistic fantasies. Skvortsov’s plays have been staged at many Russian theaters.
Konstantin Skvortsov is a winner of a few Russian literary prizes
— Literary Lermontov Prize, 2000
— Literary Fatianov Prize, 1986
— Volodin Prize, 2002
— Winner of the Prize of the National Research Forum
— Winner of National Historical Past Prize
He resides in Moscow .
Each poet has his favorite theme, his own star, his inimitable Self. For Konstantine Skvortsov all this is embodied in Russia, a country which he approaches as being a tragic unknown rather than a set of well-used clichйs, a country where everything in every dimension should be decisively discovered anew even if one must risk balancing at «the very edge of the precipice».
Speaking about Skvortsov , I use the notion of «a national galaxy». His galaxy is huge.
From a Urals legend has this author brought Ivan Bushuev /1800-1834/, an unsurpassed engraver on swords, to his play and chained our attention to his artistic endeavor to discover the Mystery of Eternal Ornament .
Being full of dramatic twists and turns, the play is a fine fabric woven of both legend and fact. It is a poetic work about the inevitable victory of Good over Evil, of lofty art over earthen craftsmanship and of unselfish service to the motherland over the self-interested pursuit of a mercenary.
All characters are vivid and convincing while the play’s poetic texture is multicolored and throbbing with rhythm.
The play was originally staged in 1973 by the Chelyabinsk TyUZ Theater, Dir. Tengiz
The play is dedicated to life and works of the famous Russian metallurgist Pavel Anosov /1799-1851/. It is based on events, the hero of which can be described as being romantic in his realism and realistic in his romanticism.
This play is about a creator, a man of noble motifs and of strong personality, a man who «won’t trade his motherland» despite all the intrigues and conspiracies he meets on his way, despite all the temptations and provocations.
It is a play where historically proven facts enable the dramatist to soar to the heights of epic proportions, with many poetic lines offering an aphoristic value.
The play premiered in 1972 at the Zlatoust Drama Theater. Dir. Alexandr INOZEVTSEV.
The life and death /1670/ of Alena of Arzamas , a peasant nun who was subsequently called Russian Joan of Arc, was used as a baseline for a tragedy that shook Russia during peasant revolts.
Fighting for their right to Life, for their own Love and for their own Faith, each of the characters makes their own choice; this concerns both the bandleader Alena , Tsarina Sofia, the Patriarch, and Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich /nicknamed the Gentle , 1629-1676/ during the reign of which the tragedy unfolds.
The play was initially staged in 1974 by the Zvilling Theater of Chelyabinsk . Dir. Naum ORLOV.
The «deeds», during the reign of Empress Elizabeth Petrovna /1741-1762/, of a well-known Moscow thief Van’ka Osipov , who was nicknamed Van’ka Cain by the people and who reached a high position at the court, served as a springboard for a farcical comedy, which enables the actors to «play fun» at serious moments of Russian history, revealing the breadth and tragic traits of Russian character.
The play premiered in 1990 at the Patriot Drama Theater of St. Petersburg . Dir. Gennady EGOROV
*Derogatory of Ivan (Transl. note)
This is not a simple illustration of the life of the famous nuclear scientist I. V. Kurchatov /1902-1960/ but rather a song of praise to a robust personality who may be haunted by both doubt and anticipation of failure but later, after he wins an intellectual victory, realizes that he must bear a formidable burden of responsibility before future generations. Anyway, Kurchatov understands that «the weapon that I developed is a weapon of violence». For this reason the main character is a knight without fear or doubt but, what’s more important, he is a tragic figure. Amongst the play’s characters is Mephistopheles who embodies evil in its absolute and irreversible incarnation. This imparts a sheen of high tragedy to the play...
The play was initially staged in 1987 by the Zvilling Theater of Chelyabinsk . Dir. Vladimir GUBANOV.
Although the play’s name takes root in a specific place of action — a sports arena in Chicago , it begs for a broader interpretation. While passions rage high amongst the players and fans in the arena, down below, under the west stand, a group of outstanding western physicists work on fission of the atomic nucleus in an underground nuclear lab.
The story behind the development of the American nuclear bomb was used by the author as a pattern for his ideas about man’s responsibility for the fates of this world as well as about the conscience that compels every honest man to weigh their steps and analyze their actions.
The play was initially staged in 1980 by the Zvilling Theater of Chelyabinsk . Dir. Naum ORLOV.
The drama’s main character is Alexandr Bestuzhev /1797-1837/, a leading figure of the noble Revolt of 1825. Despite being historic, the play has modern appeal, just as does Russian history itself. The playwright finds historic parallels by exposing the power mechanics and revealing the perennial relationships between power, man and history so that we better understand the continuity of historic events by being able to tie the fragments of the linking thread of times...
The play premiered in 1987 at the Dialog Theater Studio of Magnitogorsk . Dir. Leonid GOLITSIN.
Grigory Efimovich / Novykh / Rasputin /1872-1816/ was a gifted self-made man who was drawn by the will of destiny into political plays of supreme powers. His fate is deeply tragic as he eventually realizes that he is being used as a marionette by dark backstage forces represented by devilish politicians craving for power. Presented first in Van’ka Cain, this theme is being expounded with special sharpness and philosophical depth in the play.
The play premiered in 1991 at the Patriot Drama Theater of St. Petersburg . Dir. Gennady EGOROV
*Derogatory of Grigory (Transl. note)
The legend about Chud ’ /an ancient race/ is a ritualistic and philosophical parable about the nascence of romantic love and craving for creative activities but also about man’s urge to power and self-destruction.
The play is based on the legend about an Ugro -Finnish tribe, which is believed to have originated in Siberia . When they discovered a white tree, a symbol of White Tsar’s power, in their land, they took fright, arranged a platform covered with earth above them, cut the pillars and died.
The perennial conflict of an Artist and Power, Love and Duty, People and Leader evolves in the legend to culminate in a tragic finale.
The play was originally staged in 1986 by the Chelyabinsk TyUZ Theater, Dir. Tengiz MAKHARADZE.
Having human intelligence, people commit bestial deeds. Isn’t it proof of a dual nature of man, human and bestial at the same time.
This is a story of the legendary Mentush , an elk man, who experienced love to Man’s Daughter. The play centers on his attempt to make the World of Humans happy by teaching them how to win their daily bread by following the behests of the forefathers, but instead it leads to a tragedy which agitates and purifies our souls which still believe that Love and Beauty will save the world.
The play premiered in 1987 at the Dialog Theater Studio of Magnitogorsk . Dir. Leonid GOLITSIN.
Nikolai Kibalchich /1853-1881/ was an outstanding scientist and an ardent Narodnik , a member of the radical Populist Revolutionary Movement.
In this unsettled world riddled with injustices, where every word of freedom, truth and justice is perceived as heresy, two doors were open to Kibalchich . The first was to selflessly serve the revolutionary idea. The second was to selflessly serve science. He chose both and sought freedom for his people through his revolutionary activity and he sought a path to the highest freedom, highest in both philosophical and metaphorical sense, a path to overcome a pivotal law of nature, the law of gravity, he sought a scientific way to realize the dream of Icarus . There was, however, a third way, a way of resignation, a way of obedience, a way of vegetative existence. This way was not made for him.
The play was originally staged in 1981 by the Bauman MVTU Comedy and Drama Studio, Dir. Boris ROMANOV.
Gloomy and cold pictures are habitually placed next to the name of the superhero of spirit who was called «our aching consciousness» by Maxim Gorky. Even Dostoevsky’s portraits seem to be somewhat spooky and his sharp glance to penetrate one’s soul. Suddenly a different Dostoevsky comes to our sight — a man lighted with an earthen and ever humane love... He regained his youthful stance. Just as any man in love, he assumed a playful manner, he became a child who experienced no effort in taking two stools, fixing assumed wheels to them and, seating his beloved in this fairytale chariot, driving her throughout the imaginary St. Petersburg.
The play has two female and two male parts, as well as eight supporting ones which can be played by the actors engaged in the leading parts.
The play premiered in 1998 at the Patriot Drama Theater of St. Petersburg . Dir. Gennady EGOROV
Drama’s events unfold over the entire period of the «Times of Trouble» /1603 — 1613/, from the Death of Boris Godunov till the establishment of the Romanov dynasty.
The religious intrusion of the Vatican, the «royal games», the strife of the great lords and the Christian feats of the church fathers are being skillfully woven in a single tragic nod, which could only be cut by the popular leader Minin and Prince Pozharsky , whose names became symbols of the resurrection of the Motherland, highly honored by the Russian people.
The play was originally staged in 2001 by the NASH DOM Drama and Comedy Theater of Ozersk , Dir. Nikolai VOLOZHANIN.
Throughout the entire history of Christianity, none of the saints received universal acclaim comparable to St. George’s . His mundane life became a sample for the military lords of Byzantium , for the knights of Western Europe and for the Princes in Slavic countries. Showing his tragic conflict with Emperor Diocletian, his contemporary /284-305/, and his everlasting admiration of life, this author elevates the reader and spectator alike to the ultimate height of the spiritual exploit of the martyr, which is a heavenly patron of many nations.
The play was originally staged in 1999 by the NASH DOM Drama and Comedy Theater of Ozersk , Dir. Nikolai VOLOZHANIN.
The drama’s plot follows the path of martyrdom of St. John Chrysostom /347 — 407/ from the moment of baptism till his dethronement from the Archbishopric chair of Constantinople , which he occupied from 398 to 404.
The Teacher raised high his torch of universal love to the people and, fifteen centuries on, he is still lighting for us the arduous road to the supreme spiritual treasures.
The play was premiered in 1999 at the NASH DOM Drama and Comedy Theater of Ozersk , Dir. Yuri GORIN
To improve the humankind for millennia ahead, exactly this was the mammoth task that the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great /272-337/ set before himself.
His tragic path from his Pagan past to Christianity is used as a starting point for a dramatic play, the poetic lines of which toll as a bell in mourning of the modern civilization.
The shameful deeds of an emperor /331-363/, who tried to turn the time back and remained infamously branded as Apostate in history, attract increasing attention of poets, prosaists and dramatists.
What’s truth and faith? What’s beauty and love? Is it true that women rule the world but not every man realizes that? These queries were posed by Artists at all times, by Artists who were doomed, just as our contemporaries, to a difficult test of finding harmony between the irreconcilable TO HAVE and TO BE.