MIL OSI Translation. Region: Russian Federation –
Mikhail Bulgakov plays a poltergeist, Boris Knoblok uncovers the “crimes” of artists, and little Marina Tsvetaeva is looking for a hook in Kryukov.
In 1803, the historian Nikolai Karamzin noticed that in summer Moscow was emptying – residents rushed to nature. However, a real mass summer exodus from the city began a little later, with the development of railways: suburban trains made it possible to quickly reach summer cottages in Khimki, Tarasovka, Pushkin or Lianozovo. By the end of the 19th century, there were more than six thousand dachas around Moscow, located in 180 villages. In subsequent years and decades, dacha rest only strengthened its position.
Vacationers visited each other, staged performances, concerts and even masquerades, danced and played music, played charades and forfeits, held comic seances. Together with the Zelenograd Museum, which recently released online exhibition “Kryukovo dachnoe”, we make a sortie to Kryukovo of the first half of the twentieth century – then not yet a district of Moscow, but one of the villages near Moscow and a popular dacha place.
From the station to the cinema and the library
In 1851, the Kryukovo railway station was built, and soon the village of the same name was chosen by Moscow summer residents. Kryukovo and nearby villages – Kamenka, Kutuzovo, Barantsevo, Andreevka – attracted the townspeople with picturesque nature and reasonable prices. The families of Moscow summer residents, as a rule, left the city at the end of spring, and returned only in the fall. True, the heads of families often went to work, but thanks to the railroad, the journey did not take very long.
In the book “Dachas and the Environs of Moscow” in 1935 we read: “Station Kryukovo. Tenth stop, 39th kilometer. Zone 4 ticket. One hour fifteen minutes drive from the Moscow station of the Oktyabrskaya railway. “
In the same book, you can find a rather detailed description of Kryukov and the surroundings of the 1930s: “It [Kryukovo] is surrounded by meadows and hills, groups of coniferous and deciduous trees and a lake suitable for swimming. On the lake – boating, carp fishing. Over 230 dachas stretch along Lenin Street and Oktyabrsky Avenue. Most of the houses are surrounded by greenery. All entertainment and cultural events are held at the club. In addition to circle classes, performances and concerts are organized here by the efforts of amateurs and with the participation of Moscow pop artists. There are daily screenings in the summer cinema ”.
Kryukovo through the eyes of little Marina Tsvetaeva
The historian Dmitry Ilovaisky (1832-1920), the author of the five-volume “History of Russia” and several textbooks on which more than one generation of pre-revolutionary school students grew up, had his own Belaya Dacha estate in Andreevka near Kryukov. Ivan Tsvetaev, professor of Moscow University and founder of the Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow (now the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts), Ivan Tsvetaev, with his daughters Marina and Anastasia, often came there. Marina Tsvetaeva described Kryukovo in one of her essays:
“Asya and I are in Spassky, also called Kryukov, after the station of the Nikolaev railway. In childhood, we imagined this unprecedented Kryukovo as a hook, an iron hook of a junk dealer, or even a hook, Yaga, which means, again, old age. From the station we drove on a ruler, things without a future and a past: along the events, past black firs, softly prickly, wet paws touching the face like a sprinkler. A spread-out building, presented at a glance by a swampy plain. “
After the revolution, a children’s cafeteria and a committee of the poor were placed in Belaya Dacha, and later – an elementary school for local children. In 1922, the main building of the estate burned down, and other buildings were sold at auction.
Spiritual seances by Mikhail Bulgakov
In the summer of 1926, Mikhail Bulgakov and his wife Lyubov Belozerskaya rested in Kryukovo. They rented only one room from their acquaintances the Ponsovs, but it turned out to be quite enough. “We were given an extension room with a separate entrance. It had its own charm, for example, in case of an inopportune feast. And so it happened: more than once they stayed up with us until the very late hour, ”Belozerskaya recalled.
Actress Elena Ponsova (1907-1966) was still a 20-year-old student at the Shchukin Theater School that summer. In 1925, she began performing on the stage of the Third Studio of the Moscow Art Theater (the future Vakhtangov Theater). More recently, Ponsova’s comedic talent was appreciated by the audience – the actress made her debut in the play “Virineya”. And now she was resting at the dacha with her older sisters Lydia and Eugenia, as well as with friends.
It was fun and noisy at the dacha. It was visited by artists Vsevolod Verbitsky and Ruben Simonov, actress Anna Orochko, layout designer Sergei Topleninov, teacher of the Bolshoi Theater school Vladimir Morits and many others. The parents of the Ponsov sisters, as well as their little brother Alyosha (future theater artist Alexei Ponsov) and older brother Georges, who was vacationing at the dacha with his family, did not interfere with the entertainment of young people. During the day, the meeting place was a tennis court, and in the evening the audience pulled into the living room.
“Here, the center was a grand piano, at which a good musician Zhenya or composer Nikolai Ivanovich Sizov, who rented a room in the village, sat down,” Belozerskaya wrote. – He sat down at the instrument flawlessly: did Lidun want [Lidia Ponsova. – Approx. mos.ru] to sing a French song in a silver voice, or we needed musical accompaniment in the charade, or just wanted to dance. “
The fun company was not limited to dancing and music. One night, the summer residents decided to hold a seance, which almost ended in panic – the spirit that came to the call of people threw books in complete darkness, threw radishes on the table and pulled out hairpins from women’s hairstyles. However, it quickly became clear that all this had been done by Mikhail Bulgakov, in agreement with one of the vacationers and armed with a long rod and gloves.
Lyudmila Belozerova recalled the summer in Kryukov with great warmth many years later: “All of us who are still alive remember the life of Kryukov. The secret to the long life of these memories lies in the unusually benevolent atmosphere of those days. There was, as it were, a guarantee of mutual sympathy and mutual trust … How good it is when everyone wishes only good to everyone! “
Boris Knoblok’s Barbizon near Moscow
The famous theater artist Boris Knoblok (1903–1984) rented a dacha near Kryukov in Kamenka for many years. In his book of memoirs, Boris Georgievich left an excellent description of these places: “… This is the sky, this is arable land, dark ridges of spruce forests, barrels of rivers, streams, chintz of ringing birch groves, the dope of flowering meadows, the distant August sound of a thresher, night, paths, chill of dark water, night swimming, dewy morning. “
He compared Kamenka with Barbizon, a town in central France where the predecessors of the Impressionists lived and painted their landscapes. This comparison is quite fair: at the beginning of the 20th century, many artists and architects rented summer cottages in Kamenka and the surrounding area. Among them are the painter Konstantin Yuon, artists Vasily and Boris Yakovlev, Yevgeny Katsman, Pyotr Shukhmin, Vladimir Shtranikh, Viktor Perelman and others. The exhibition presents the drawing “Before the Pancakes”, created in 1929 by Boris Georgievich, – probably, he captured on it his family and friends-artists.
“A canvas umbrella and a sketchbook are permanent components of the diverse Kamensk landscape. Traces of artistic “crimes” were encountered at every step: either abandoned used tubes, or a trunk, a tree stump or a leaf stained with paints. Kamenka was full of traces of the love of artists of different styles and ages, ”wrote Knoblok.
Gothic dacha of Semyon Lavochkin
Kryukovo remained popular with summer residents throughout the 20th century. In the late 1940s, for example, the famous aircraft designer Semyon Lavochkin (1900-1960) built a summer cottage here. A two-storey house in the Gothic style was located right on the banks of the Skhodnya River.
After the war, some of the chief designers were allocated funds and land for the construction of summer cottages. Semyon Lavochkin was among them. The dacha became his favorite vacation spot.
“On the second floor there were bedrooms, children’s rooms, and on the first floor there were a dining room, guest rooms and a kitchen. The plot was large and wooded. There was a small vegetable garden on the site where carrots, beets, cucumbers, tomatoes, and greens were grown. Moreover, Semyon Alekseevich was engaged in the garden himself. He gladly dug the beds, planted, watered, lovingly looked after the plantings, and reaped the harvest. Apple trees, plums, cherries, bushes of currants, raspberries, gooseberries grew in the orchard, ”recalled Lavochkin’s colleague Leonid Zaks.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.