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The Moscow Music
and Drama Theatre







A. Rossinsky, based on V. Voinovich’s

"Private Ivan Chonkin"

Archetypal musical comedy in 2 acts


Vladimir Voinovich's novel "Life and Extraordinary Adventures of Private Ivan Chonkin" had a destiny that was far from plain sailing: the authorities banned it; the readers loved it and could not have enough of it. In the nineties, the novel was somewhat forgotten, having been pigeon-holed under the label "Perestroika Sensations". An unwise move, however. According to the novel's author, the life of the Chonkin protagonists is not confined to a narrow time slot. After all, this is a fairy tale, like the films of the thirties such as "Happy-Go-Lucky Fellows",   "The Pig Farm Girl and the Shepherd". Only, this is a fairy tale with a twist. In other words, it is an archetypal comedy, as the novel was thought of by Voinovich himself. And archetype heroes are known to be eternal.

This is why the genre of the production can be classified as a comedy, qualified as an archetypal musical. Because the vivid grotesque personalities, which include, besides the "lyrical couple" of Ivan Chonkin and Nyura Belyashova, the kolkhoz chairman, a party boss, and even the Great Leader Himself, live, think and get into scrapes to the tunes of songs of that time*. And the time was like this: the serious side of life extended so far and wide that it was completely overlapped by the funny side.  Funny, isn't it. Because it's so serious.

Running time 2 hours 20 minutes

Directors: Andrei Rossinsky, Stas Namin with participation from Vladimir Voinovich
Artist: Irina Balashevskaya

* the show incorporates music by:
V. Muradeli, I. Dunayevsky, O. Feltsman, A. Novikov, A.Aleksandrov, L. Beethoven
lyrics by: S. Mikhalkov, A. Salnikov, S. Alymov., A. Shmidtgov, M.Matusovsky, A. Rossinsky, I. Kormiltsev, V. Kharitonov