Dmitry Brusnikin: “the Theatre is very serious”

Theater Director and actor Dmitry Brusnikin has died on 61-m to year of life on 9 August 2018. This interview he gave “Pravmiru” at the end of 2014.

Many viewers Dmitry Brusnikin known for his works in the series. But in fact there are also numerous acting and directing work and many years of teaching at school-Studio of MKHAT. With actor, Director and screenwriter, honored artist of Russia, Dmitry Vladimirovich. Brusnikina we’re talking about how to enroll in drama school on the dispute as the acting profession is perceived by people far from the theatre of Oleg Efremov – man and the master about the birth of theatres. And the series, of course.

About eight schools, French in Tambov and dedication to classmates

Remembering his school childhood, I can’t say that your child would desire such a change of team for ten years, seven or eight times. It is quite difficult, it is difficult to get used to.

You say the brightest moment from my childhood? For example, I remember when we moved from Tambov to Moscow, in Klin. It was a military town and school was in town and had to ride the bus – something an hour or an hour-twenty, and then another to walk it.

And we arrived not at the beginning of the school year, but something in the middle. It was the fifth, no, sixth grade, and this school was not the French language. And I’m in fifth grade in Tambov taught French. And here I had to learn German instead of French after a year and a half.

Dmitry Brusnikin

On the first day when I came to this school, I was approached (still remember his name) Bob, his name was GNIB. He walked over and gave me two professional hit, very famously. It was such a dedication to the classmates.

Then we became very close friends. I was seated at the back, he, too, sat there, and he was a repeater or tradegothic.

I wrote him all the control. I in the childhood very well played football. After our class someone won because of my help, I began to respect.

This is an example of one of such vivid impressions as to face the first day. No Hello, no goodbye – just once, once!

About the birth certificate, entering into a dispute, unfunny actors and the chief Director of the Soviet Union

Everything was pretty traditional. I graduated from high school very early. Not because he was a very gifted child, just sent me to school to learn earlier than normal kids because there was no one to stay home.

I went to school, it was near Zagorsk, the village was called Malinniki, and there the school sent the boy, who just turned six years old. In General, I a year before I went.

Another one of those childhood memories: I remember being very small, and the teacher asked me how old I am. Taught by his parents, I said I seven. Then she said that I need to bring a birth certificate.

Dmitry Brusnikin

I couldn’t remember this phrase “birth certificate”, that is the word “testimony,” and remember what I said to parents: “we Need to bring something that tells about my birth.”

Mom and dad wrote on a piece of paper in the box, “this is Dmitry Brusnikin, was then born”. I brought this piece of paper. The teacher at first said that it’s not, then he was just swearing.

At some point I cried, explained that either I was expelled from school, or let them go and talk with the teacher. Somehow they went and agreed to. In General, I graduated from school early.

My older brother studied in the Institute of electronic technology. Then there was a period when everyone was fond of… Physics and mathematics were the most important and most favorite subjects.

I came first in the University in the physics Department. Since I was very small, and after tenth grade was also small in stature, and in General, I was such a homely child, and my grandmother, dad’s mother, lived in Moscow near the University.

I passed the exams. And then there was such a system where an applicant could pass two exams and then GPA end up it. If that wasn enough, he was.

In short, these points were sufficient to go to Institute of electronic technology, because there he studied the older brother, and I was with him not so lonely.

I went to the Institute of electronic engineering and studied there for four years. However, after the third course went to akademku.

About theater Studio… my Brother worked at this Studio, and I sometimes went to see what he was doing. One of his colleagues, Dima Kravtsov, who then worked at the Vakhtangov theatre, he graduated from the Shchukin school. So, he dragged me to Moscow for some kind of audition, he was there reading something. I also asked for something to read.

Then there was a time that we often went to the theatre. The Taganka theatre was extremely respected, so we knew his entire repertoire. “Antiworld” ascension, “Under the skin statue of Liberty”. All of this we sang, read and know almost by heart.

Some of it I read. And I was advised to do, but it was just, it was no desire.

And then spring came, and we went from Zelenograd to Moscow still a friend of mine. In General, on a dare we have to go to the theater universities, even without knowing the addresses.

Remember when we arrived in Moscow on Revolution square in help Desk learned of the address of theatre schools. It turned out that two pretty close – the Schepkin drama school and theater. First I went to the Schepkin, read there, and then at the Art theatre. It was so amazing that there I quickly offered to finish to study at the physical-technical Institute and go to the theater.

I could not understand what it is, why it should happen. But for me it worked. I went back in the Shchukin school, then really didn’t go anywhere, because these three schools were in agreement, so I went there to study.

But, probably, decided that the Theater gained the course Oleg Nikolaevich Efremov. And there was a teacher Igor Pavlovich Vlasov, which we then taught on one of the tours he just said to me, “what are You, stupid or something? This is the chief Director of the Soviet Union, and, may be, and the world. What can I choose?” In short, I secretly decided to change profession.

When the parents found out about it, it was an absolute shock, because in our family no one in this area tried. Although my mom was extremely bright.

Around it gathered a huge number of people, she had some authority and were incredibly colorful storyteller.

And yet, I remember dad came to the Dorm in Zelenograd and saw that I day instead of engage in or be at the Institute, slept. And already had some tours, he asked: “what’s the matter?” I said, “We need to talk. I decided to enroll in drama school.”

And, no, not the way it was. They were worried that they home received a letter that waiting for me on the second or third round in schepkinskoe school. This was the reason for the arrival of his father to the hostel. He said, “What is this letter?” I said, “This story, I’m going to change the profession.” He looked at me carefully and said, “I don’t know what you’re doing, what kind of artist? What drama school? Well, you’re not funny!”

I then very often recalled, because ordinary people often think that in this profession a person needs something to be different, at least, at least be funny.

But then parents had some calls – teachers who were recruited, something told them that they somehow, with my arrival resigned. So I began to study at the theatre Institute.

About years of study and Oleg Efremov

Then there was a very difficult period of my adaptation in the theater world. Because, first, it seemed to me that I’m a grown man. Despite the fact that I was not so many years, after all I have studied for four years in another Institute. And my classmate was Roma Kozak, who at that time also studied at the Institute of communication. This is my closest friend. We are with him from the very first day, and somehow the rest of his life was together. Sasha Feklistov, too. In General, there was already adult children.

Well, Yes, I selected it, Oleg. It was his course, before that he had one set, and then this.

Even our teachers were Alla Borisovna Pokrovskaya, Andrey Vasilyevich Myagkov and Anastasiya Valentinovna Voznesenskaya, wife of Andrei Vasilyevich. There were two young teacher is Nikolai Vladimirovich Skorikov and Igor Pavlovich Vlasov. Another course came Alexander Kalyagin, was doing some work.

Dmitry Brusnikin

Oleg Nikolayevich, apparently, there was a time that he needed fellowship with us, with our generation. Something came up and he took it very seriously.

Usually in those days the master of a rate rarely seen on the course. And Oleg went extremely frequently, it engaged us, invest in us.

He has taught me? First, this is a man who was an absolute fanatic of his profession. This man of the theater, the don Quixote theatre. These people I never met in my life, because for him, the theater accommodates the entire world.

Probably, this Shakespearean wording is most suited to the life of Oleg Nikolaevich, who, in General, is actually no family. I mean, she was, but it was always secondary.

The primary for him was the theater, rehearsals, people, playwrights, authors. So he has channeled so much effort, energy, and love that it replaced everything. It’s even replaced some of the most common needs.

I think he would some time not even there, and only talking about the theater, the rehearsal, role, task, and goal. It was his world. Perhaps this dedication distinguishes him and his students.

I realized that he was in some point was the unquestioned authority. And not because it was somehow a great Director. He was a great artist, Yes. But he was a great figure of the theatre, the standard. His opinion is respected by all.

When Yefremov told about a particular performance, it was the standard, because he was very serious account. He was very serious about this matter – to the theatre. It is a science, it’s not fun. This is not an idle pastime, but a very serious matter. So he taught us.

About contemporary theatre, their 80’s and about how to put the classics

When I say that the modern viewer is, perhaps, the first step is to ask the question, what is contemporary theatre. Because the viewer away from the impossible.

There is a wonderful answer to the question about contemporary theatre of Anatoly Vasiliev. However, he when asked, most likely, was something angry. But he said: “the Modern theater is a theater, which is modern.” And the best wording I don’t know.

What is contemporary theatre? How to play the classics today? Why is it necessary today to play Ostrovsky? What happened, what happened in the world? What happened with the audience? What happened that now it is necessary to tell words of Ostrovsky about how we live now?

If this relationship is found, if this arc is stretched, then it is necessary. Because it is simply a cultural excursion – this is not it. As you rightly noted, some theaters have already several times went in this direction.

For example, I remember my school the thrill of Ostrovsky and his plays “the Storm”. We were all incredibly spoiled by the school and these definitions, which invested us since childhood. And “ray of light in the darkness,” and what is “dark Kingdom”?

Then I realized what actually Kabanova as she loves her son, what is this amazing, fantastic people. And what kind of relationship with the Wild. It is not so, as we were told, everything is much more serious, deeper and more interesting.

Why is there in my Director’s biography Beckett? The first theatrical performance, and from Beckett’s “waiting for Godot”. And played two of my classmate Sasha Feklistov and Pasha Belozerov. And another graduate of our school Vladimir sterjakov.

This was the period when the Efremov released us. He took us to the theater with the play “Days of Turbin,” it was the graduation play, and the whole course came to him in the theater. Before that I had played some roles on the small stage, and all was well. We probably could take it, but suddenly it seemed to us that it is necessary to leave, and he let us go.

Dmitry Brusnikin

He let us go to the Studio “Man” to Lyudmila Romanovna Roscovan. We began to make new theatre. Roma Kozak, Sasha Feklistov, Igor zolotovitski, Gregory Manukov, Egor Vysotsky, I have a group of people who came from the Art theatre. And there I was with the guys the play “waiting for Godot”.

Why “waiting for Godot”? Yeah, I guess it was a search, probably, something did not suit us. I do not remember that time, but I guess something didn’t suit what was happening at the arts theatre. I guess we wanted some way to tell the country about yourself with the help of some other drama.

For example, earlier on the course had the play mroczek “Immigrants”, brought Igor Pavlovich Vlasov. And Misha Makeev, Roman and Sasha Feklistovym made a play that was banned, then played in basements, on calls. It was really some kind of cult play, which was born, relatively speaking, on our course.

Then Roma put another performance, also opened largely Petrushevskaya. And the play “Cinzano” was also generational, extremely important in the history of modern theatre. Yes, there was such a search, so there was Beckett.

But anyway, I did not long remain in the Studio “People,” then returned to the theater, because Oleg has offered me the role, from which it was impossible to refuse. It was after Ivanov Smoktunovsky. After Oleg Ivanovich Borisov – Aster. In addition, he suggested that I write a play by Chekhov. And I did his first work at the Art theatre – “the Fatherless”, in “Platonov”.

Students of school-Studio of the Moscow art theatre and about how theatres are born

I think every four years they change. Since my theatre activities have not been interrupted since the mid 80-ies, at some point it became for me a must, and every time, every four years, are new people, new look, new generation. Although, they say, between the generations takes place, six years old, but…

They’re all talented. Whether it is for time Pets? Of course, they were. And they remain.

Understand, school is such a unique place it was conceived by its founders as a unique space. It was conceived as a Lyceum. Something favorites. Of course, not to say that it conserved, but I still think that something remains, and to distinguish the students of the Studio school from the others.

It’s not because I’m bragging. All, of course, has changed a lot. If the invoice has meant extremely much, now it is less and less something so much more interesting to watch the person. I’m now doing what you are trying to find a role for the student, and to find his personal manifestation, that is, trying to create conditions where people can Express themselves. And I think that the most interesting time is that we have now.

I think these students are now enrolled in the Studio school and finish this year fourth year… I really wanted this course to have remained and survived. Because all the performances that were made by them for three and a half years, not only in my opinion but in the opinion of theatre critics –competitive with professional theatres. So, it’s period to this generation emerged in the theatre.

Because the theaters that are scheduled to occur by decree or authority of any person, as a rule, short-lived. In General, this is a random story.

The appearance of the theater is a necessity. For example, when a theater “Contemporary”, this was a necessity. Just had to create a theater of this generation. Just as was the necessity of the emergence of the Taganka Theater – it was necessary to this city, this country, these people and this audience. Just need to the Taganka Theater to create Vysotsky to Lyubimov.

I think the time has come when it is necessary to create a theater of this generation. Will this theater our workshop? I’d like to. But then it all depends on God.

About working in series

As for TV, why I was doing TV shows and occasionally have them now. I can tell you that it is life.

I was an actor and Director of the Moscow Art theatre and a student of Oleg Nikolaevich Efremov. Then came my first work of serial “the Petersburg secrets”. On this film worked aristarkhovich Leonid Pchelkin and Vadim Zobin, they asked me to do it and recommended me to them Innokenty Mikhailovich Smoktunovsky…

Somehow he decided that I needed to work with these Directors; he actively insisted on the fact that I was in, and they were very convinced. To which I said, “self-defense, this series is a secondary, tabloid literature”.

I couldn’t understand why I’m doing this. I remember that I was pushed out of the house, said to be sure to went for the audition and didn’t come back, if I will not come back.

I came, but it seemed to me that it is not worthy of my attention. I remember when I walked on some of the next sample towards me was Irina Rozanova, and we then just collaborated with her in the Studio “Man”. And she said to me, “have You read? You read it all?” I said, “I read. Hey, Ira…” I wanted to tell her how horrible it is. She says: “This is a Grand, right?” I could not understand why I was there.

In General, somehow talked me into it. I’m so reluctant was there to participate. This series show quite often, and when in some episodes I see your face, I think it dissatisfied. Then I painted in that color, I went with it. Everything I didn’t like, I was terribly unhappy.

But I had a great relationship with Leonid Aristarkhovich and Vadim Nikolaevich by Sabinin. Then everything was removed for a long time, and we have developed wonderful relationships with authors, with Lena graminae and Misha by Ugarova, this is also my generation.

There was such a trusting atmosphere that the cast I was allowed, for example, improvisation, and sometimes even allow some pieces to direct. Gradually he included me in work and at some point, I became incredibly interested in the process. To the extent that after this work he offered me a joint work as a Director. In General, he and Vadim, they became my in some extent teachers.

Then there was also this “Chekhov and Co”, my independent work in Chekhov’s stories where we were able to remove almost all the actors of the Art theatre of the period. This television activities fascinated me.

Then, when there was no Oleg, was a very difficult period in my relationship with the theatre. Because he was not just a teacher, but even so theatrical father. When her father found out that I was completely covered.

I was alone, despite the fact that were friends, were having an affair, which even then began to supervise over theatre. I some time worked, played with him, but I was incredibly lonely. I could not find the place, so looked in the series. And it took off. And studied, really studied this profession. Therefore, I do not regret this time.

I understand that this production that it’s incredible compromise. But I’m trying to do this work honestly. And definitely know that the actors with whom I collaborate in these serials as a Director, I love to do. Sometimes these are producers, they know that actors like me to play, so it’s cheaper. When Brusnikina, they don’t put those bets that are put up usually.

I love to communicate with them, to do with them, I love to delve into this, understand, I love them. Yes, in this genre, in the series, but it is interesting. I’m acting Director. I love actors, I love the people alive and on stage and on screen. If I am successful, I am delighted and happy.

Dmitry Brusnikin

Photo: Anna Halperin

Video: Victor Aromshtam

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