Dimitry Devdariani - Theatre Director
 

Dimitry Devdariani
theatre director

Dimitry Devdariani theatre director
   
Dimitry Devdariani theatre director
 
 
Playing Turgenev
 

Playing Turgenev
Based on two one act plays by Ivan Turgenev
Performed in Russian with English subtitles

A great success!

In November 2018 our troupe performed our new show "Playing Turgenev". It consisted of two shorts penned by Ivan Turgenev, the Russian classical writer, who's novel, "Fathers and Sons" is perhaps his only known work in the West. Despite being famous in his native Russia, Turgenev's writing is still to be discovered by the rest of the world. We believe that his gentle, unique and deeply refined literary voice needs to be heard by today's audiences. That is why we put so much effort in the creation of this, our first production.

Russian Classics Theatre believes in kind, beautiful and morally sound art. We are aiming to put on productions of classical plays that are faithful to the original, respectful towards the ideas of the author and the sensibilities of the audience. Dostoevsky's well-known words "Beauty shall save the world" truly resonate with us.

An Evening in Sorrento by Ivan Turgenev
 

We hope to promote inter-cultural dialogue and to welcome English speaking audiences to our future productions. Every show produced by our theatre will be performed in Russian and accompanied by English subtitles.

Great cultures should never stop talking to each other.

With our production we celebrated the 200th anniversary of Ivan Turgenev's birthday.

The cast:
Olga Kara-Zakharevskaya, Leonid Kara, Leonidas Plavko, Oleg Belov, Daina Veprauskiene, Lina Kruchkova, Artur Avalitov, Vladimir Filimonov, Bijan Badi, Natasha Hirom, Lubov Parkins, Amina Nurmukhametova.

Written by Ivan Turgenev
Directed by Dimitry Devdariani
Performed by Russian Classics Theatre London
at the Courtyard Theatre, London in November 2018

Click image to enlarge
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev
Playing Turgenev

Audience feedback
The performance enjoyed a wonderful reception from the audience and a few spectators were kind enough to put their thoughts in writing:

Recently I was lucky enough to attend a show by Russian Classic's Theatre, that consisted of two shorts by Turgenev: "An Evening in Sorrento" and "Provincial Lady". I believe that it's a worthy gift for both,the honorable author to mark his bisantinery and the audience. I thoroughly enjoyed the show! I knew Turgenev mostly as a novelist and a short story writer. So, to see his dramaturgical ideas realised by wonderful actors guided by talented director Dimitry Devdariani was doubly exciting for me. The troupe managed to fulfill that uneasy task splendidly.

Costumes, music, real candles, well rehearsed scenes and even artistically inventive set changes-never fails to impress, to delight and to tranport the spectators out of the chaos of the 21st century, away from frosty November in London, into the romantic, warm atmosphere of "gentry nests" of the 19th century. English subtitles are kind of a bridge that makes such high quality Russian art accessible to local lovers of Russian culture, and theatre in particular. These subtitles are undoubtedly as well a sign of respect towards the country we all live in. Luckily, there's no shortage of the admirers of Russian culture in the homeland of Shacespeare and Dickens, and thanks to the work of gifted troupe of Russian Classic Theatre, their numbers will grow rapidly. I believe that firmly! Come with your children, invite friends, enjoy great and powerful Russian art! I recommend it!

Erna Rozmislovitch
Many thanks for the enjoyable evening. The show was great. It wasn't even a show, but a real life. All the aspects are so well presented: period, characters, atmosphere, emotions. I felt like I was looking at a real life in rural Russia and then in Sorrento. And I wasn't able to recognise our actors. They transformed themselves fully. Each of them acted in complete harmony with the proposed epoque. It included their manners, behavior, facial expressions, way of walking, voices...Everything seemed so vivid and natural...Turgenev would be happy that his ideas were realised so beautifully.

Great thanks!
Well done, Turgenev admirers! Actors gave their hundred percent. We, as an audience, were given an opportunity to dive into the atmosphere of Turgenev's epoque and to truly understand the complex psychology of his characters. Great choice of music! Thanks to director Dimitry Devdariani and to the cast!

I wish this new theatre all the success and luck in the world!

Last night I was lucky enough to finally see a wonderful show by Russian Classics Theatre lead by thoughtful and talented director Dimitry Devdariani. The performance consisted of two one act plays by Ivan Turgenev: "Provincial Lady" and "An Evening in Sorrento". The audience was delighted by the inspired acting and well-tuned ensamble work of the gifted cast of this production; romanticism and stark reality, dramatism and comical glimpses woven by the actors into a rich tapestry created a window into 19th century life. It must be said, though, that certain things sparked a debate: some said that the events depicted in the first play are too far removed from today's reality, that they're slow moving and even boring. I completely disagree with that point of view and would like to take sides with Turgenev and that of the director, whose choice of this particular piece was indeed timely.

Turgenev, as an author—and this is common knowledge—was extremely sensitive to the moods, changes and ideas that affected society. His play "Provincial Lady" somehow has become more apt today, when the last of the taboos seem to have melted away and issues around sexual freedom are discussed so openly. Today we condemn brutal male sexism, yet we critisize much less the female version of it. The heroine of the play, Daria, portrayed vividly by actress Olga Zakharevskaya, excels in the sophisticated art of manipulation. She is so disarmingly flirtatious, so sweet and witty, so determined to gain a higher social status that two hours is enough time for her to achieve it. Neither her husband (Leonid Kara), nor Count Lubin (Leonidas Plavko) are able to counterract her efforts. These "fallen" men are becoming mere pawns in her game. They become psychologically dependant on Daria and obediently comply with her wishes. The author of the play and the director were not just acknowledging the fact that people and their wills can be easily manipulated. It wouldn't be possible to convince the audience that such an obidience and such victimasation of men by a female will are possible without showing the situation in progress, showing the entire process. The spectators had to become familiar with the whole arsenal of sly moves, play on emotions, clever usage of personal charm in order to understand how normal men can be turned into actual slaves. That's why I don't think that the first play of the evening requires significant cuts. Who can say that even today our personal freedom and sense of worth are not attacked constantly? Who can say that we don't encounter users who play on people's best feelings to fulfill their own goals? And all of this happens with or without sexual overtones.

The second half of the show continues this theme perfectly: "An Evening in Sorrento" is both written and directed in a more romantic style. Nadeszda Pavlovna (played by excellent actress Natalia Hirom) is charming and full of irony. Like a vampire she is feeding on the admiration of her entourage. At first glance she owns the destinies of her old "friend" Avakov (Bijan Badi), her niece Masha (Lina Kriutshkova) and young admirer Balskyi (Oleg Belov). But suddenly the young "victims" are off the hook and the experienced predator is forced to give up before the power of genuine emotions, youth, purity and mutual romantic feelings. Could it be seen as her downfall? Who knows? While allowing the young people to marry, Nadeszda orders everyone to go to Paris and smiles at her hidden thoughts... Many women would say,"Yes, that's the way to do things—Do or die!" I believe that this show is filled with deep psychological observations and talks of the most important aspects of human relationships. And it's a good cause for a quality contemporary debate. My thanks go to the director, all of the cast members, all the helpers and everyone else involved in the creation of this truly classical piece of theatre.

Larisa Volkova

 
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Dimitry Devdariani theatre director
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Dimitry Devdariani theatre director