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September 29, 2021 10:01 am

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Clown V. Lazarenko at the poster advertising his somersault-mortale through two cars. 1910s. Main Archive of Moscow

Consider the pre-revolutionary theater and circus posters stored in the Glavarkhiv.

Designing and drafting posters for performances, concerts and circus performances is a real art. It is necessary for a person passing or passing by to see and understand them, and most importantly – to become interested. Today’s posters are laconic and simple. It’s hard to imagine that a little over 100 years ago, reading street advertisements could have taken a few minutes. The posters, organized according to completely different principles, slowly told the public about what awaited it.

The Nikitin Brothers Circus: Foggy Pictures and Floating Elephants

“On land and on water. Nice is a beautiful Riviera ”- this was the name that lured the famous Moscow circus of the Nikitin brothers. It is difficult to say in what year the premiere took place, but it can be assumed that Muscovites read this advertisement between 1911 and 1917: the text was written in accordance with the pre-revolutionary spelling rules, and the address indicated was a house on the corner of Tverskaya and Sadovaya-Triumfalnaya (now Bolshoi Sadovaya), where the circus was located in 1911-1926. Today this building houses the Satire Theater.

The Nikitin brothers – Dmitry, Peter and Akim – opened their circus in 1886. Before that, they performed in other people’s circuses, as well as booths and puppet theaters: Dmitry was an athlete, Peter was a sword swallower and gymnast, and Akim juggled. At first, the circus was located on Tsvetnoy Boulevard. The Glavarkhiv keeps a circus poster dating back to this period. The verbose announcement invites you to “a particularly interesting performance in three sections”, in which eight stallions take part, “Misha Taptygin the bear, who will ride a horse while standing,” “Theodore,” with gymnastic exercises, as well as physicist K.O. Krause with “foggy pictures with movements and transformations.” This performance took place on October 28, 1887.

Quite quickly, the Nikitin brothers left other circuses behind, to the annoyance of the latter. Especially their success was not happy with Albert Salamonsky, whose circus (by that time very popular) was in the neighborhood. Deciding to get rid of competitors, Salamonsky bought the building in which the Nikitins circus was located, and took a subscription from his older brother Dmitry, obliging the brothers to leave Moscow. The brothers left, but a year later they returned and resumed the work of the circus. Salamonsky tried to sue them, but lost.

In the 1890s, the brothers parted ways. Peter retired from circus activities, Dmitry opened his own freak show and menagerie, and Akim became the only head of the family circus. He worked until his death in 1917.

“There are a lot of participants in this pantomime,” the advertisement for the show “On Land and Water. Nice is a beautiful Riviera ”, – artists, a big ballet of bathers, floating boats, and also floating elephants at great depths In Russia, this is all new, everything is original, a funny plot, incessant laughter for everyone. This pantomime was personally directed by the director of the circus A.A. Nikitin “.

In 1919, the Nikitins circus was nationalized and renamed the Second Moscow State Circus.

Moscow Art Theater: “Uncle Vanya”

This modest poster invited Muscovites to the play “Uncle Vanya” based on the play of the same name by Anton Chekhov. She announces the 27th show in February 1900. It is interesting that the person depicted on the poster does not look like the leading actor, actor Alexander Vishnevsky, but like the playwright himself. Behind him, the artist’s hand depicted a village house – a manor in which the action of “Uncle Vanya” unfolds. In the upper right corner there is something similar to an excerpt from the ledger: the words “carry”, “creamy”, “sour cream 20 pounds” are guessed. Uncle Vanya and his unfortunate niece Sonya from the sad scene in the finale of the play bow their heads over the ledgers. At the same time, the famous phrase sounds: “We will rest, Uncle Vanya.”

Chekhov wrote the drama about the intellectual Ivan Voinitsky, who has lived all his life in the shadow of a famous relative, Professor Serebryakov, and in love with his young wife, in 1889 (the play was finally completed in 1896). During the 1890s, Uncle Vanya was staged in several Russian theaters. And in 1899, Vladimir Nemirovich-Danchenko and Konstantin Stanislavsky presented their version to the public.

The premiere of the performance at the Moscow Art Theater took place on October 26. The performance, in which the then stars of the troupe were involved – Olga Knipper, Alexander Vishnevsky, Vasily Lugsky, Maria Lilina, as well as Stanislavsky himself as Astrov, was very popular. It was renewed on the stage of the theater in 1911, 1918 and 1926. However, at first, the creators were sure of his failure. Konstantin Stanislavsky in his book “My Life in Art” (1924) recalled:

“It’s hard to believe now that after the premiere of Uncle Vanya, we gathered in a close company in a restaurant and shed tears there, since the performance, in the opinion of everyone, was a failure. However, time has done its job: the performance was recognized, lasted more than twenty years in the repertoire and became known in Russia, Europe and America. “

Glukhov stadium: closing of the football season

Behind this modest poster is an interesting story associated with the appearance of the first football teams in the Moscow region of Glukhov. At the end of the 19th century, specialists from England worked at the Bogorodsko-Glukhovsky manufactory, who tried to popularize football. Young people liked the game, but at first foreign sports did not take root. The manufacturer Arseny Morozov personally imposed a ban on his occupation.

However, everything changed in 1910, when the Moscow governor-general gave permission for the official creation of the Glukhov football team. The fact was that the son of Evgeny Sveshnikov, the manager of the manufactory factories, became interested in football. Factory workers have become football players. Gradually the matches turned into a part of festivities, and the athletes got a permanent meeting place – the Glukhiv stadium. The poster, preserved in the Glavarchiv, invites everyone to the last game of 1910 – the entrance to the matches was free.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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