New legends will be told of Kazan

New legends will be told of Kazan Photo: (on the photo - Mikhail Durnenkov)

KZN Story dramatic laboratory has started in Kazan, it is headed by a famous Russian playwright Mikhail Durnenkov. The objective of the laboratory is the creation of an anthology, consisting of several legends about Kazan. At a press conference of the organizers of the project, a correspondent of Realnoe Vremya found out whether the legends about Zilant and a murdred actress of a theatre of a landlord Yesipov (or she allegedly threw herself from the Syuyumbike Tower) are suitable for this purpose.

'We need a new folklore'

It seems that the words said by Vladimir Mayakovsky during a visit to the capital of Tatarstan: 'Kazan is rising by a legend' are becoming true. Within a week, legends will be written about Kazan, and this will the legends of 'contemporary times'. And Kazan will rise by 'a new legend'.

Six candidates have been chosen to work in the team of Mikhail Durnenkov, there was no casting, there were offers to participate in the project from the centre of contemporary drama and directing 'Center. First'. All the authors, who have presented their synopses of future plays, have already worked with the center before.

The laboratory will work for a week and the next day after its finish Regina Sattarova will join the process, she is an artistic director of an independent theatre Paket-Theater. She will have only a month: on December 8, in the Ugol theatre space it is scheduled the premiere of the new Kazan legends.

'The ultimate goal of the laboratory is the creation of an anthology, which will include several plays-legends about Kazan. But not those about Zilant or the Queen thrown herself from the wall. It will be an urban folklore. This part in our city in the artistic context has not been elaborated yet,' explained the curator of the laboratory, a theatre critic Niyaz Iglamov.

After the laboratory will be finished, Regina Sattarova will join the process. Photo: Oleg Tikhonov

But what a contemporary urban folklore is? In what direction will the laboratory participants move? This question of Realnoe Vremya was answered by Anastasia Radvogina, an artistic director of the 'Centre. First' association. 'For example, everybody knows a woman with a parrot, who can be found at the Kolkhozny market. Her parrot can read fortune. Why not an urban legend?' commented Radvogina.

However, Niaz Iglamov said: 'If there is no suitable legend, the participants of the laboratory can make it up.' Nothing wrong with that, folklore is created this way, an urban one is no exception.

And Kazan again

In fact, the new project conceptually resembles one that was done by a group of young actors a few years ago. By the way, a performance 'Kazan, I love you!' also a production of Regina Sattarova. The production had a resounding success, and they started to talk about Sattarova as a very interesting and promising director.

We can assume that the new project of urban legends will be no less interesting. This is evidenced, first of all, by the fact that the young playwrights will work under the leadership of Mikhail Durnenkov, who can already be called venerable.

Durnenkov is a playwright and screenwriter, the author of over 15 plays and screenplays, a participant of festivals of contemporary drama Lyubimovka and New Drama, participant of many theater forums, his works are translated into many languages.

Inna Yarkova does not exclude that the play in the near future will be in a repertoire of the theatre space Ugol. Photo:

The number of theaters, where his plays are performed, is big: from independent Praktika and Theatre.doc to the Moscow Art Theatre named after A. Gorky. A play Stuff by Durnenkov won a Grand-Prix at the international competition of playwrights Eurasia-2008. A play Drunk, written in collaboration with his brother Vyacheslav, has been accepted for production by the Royal Shakespeare Theater in England. So, the artistic director of the laboratory has been chosen correctly. As the playwright told at the press conference, when living in Tolyiatti he was involved in a similar project.

Will the play about urban legends be included in the repertoire of the Ugol theatre space? Quite possibly, the director of the Contemporary Art Support Fund 'The Living City' Inna Yarkova does not exclude that. It's obvious that the Ugol will form a certain repertoire policy in the near future.

By Tatyana Mamaeva