Theater art is a synthesis of several arts – literature, choreography, music. The theater is usually a collective event. In the creation of the play, actors, director, musicians take part. The development of the theater was directly connected with the development of society. Those views that put on stage today, our ancestors simply would not understand.

Not so long ago in Russian society, a discussion arose about what place the theater occupies in modern life. Many did not like the emerging interpretations of classical ideas. The discussion that unfolded in the press and on the Internet showed that many people in general do not know anything about the life of the modern theater. He is surrounded by myths, which we will try to correct.


You can not offend the feelings of viewers.

The purpose of the creator is to constantly review the norms permissible, both in art and in society. Vanguard has always been on the verge of normal, it is considered a kind of deviant behavior. The laws adopted in the literature, painting and theater often aroused doubts in somebody. There were always people who did not share generally accepted concepts and morals. So the development of art always presupposed the presence of offended spectators. If the performance shows the picture of the world that is familiar to people, then this is a mass culture. But this is not bad.

The state should not pay for theatrical experiments.

It has already been said that experiments in the theater are useful for society. This allows people to tolerate dissent. If such an argument seems unconvincing, then it is worthwhile to consider why in the modern theater, the same Gogol Center or the Theater of Nations, good attendance. Young Russian director Konstantin Bogomolov, who sees the classics in an original way, collects sold out. Tickets for performances of the German Thomas Ostermayer are sold out instantly. And if the state takes upon itself the functions of cultural education of its citizens, why should this current part of the theater be ignored?

The director does not have to express himself in the theater.

The very profession of the director, as we know it today, appeared between the XIX and XX century. Earlier the theatrical trends were formed by playwrights, less often their actors were introduced. But in the twentieth century, the theater became the patrimony of directors. In this case, it is worth remembering the contribution of representatives of other professions, because art is still collective. In Russia in the last 10-20 years the main trend was the New Drama. Her influence was formed by a whole new generation of directors – Kirill Serebrennikov, Dmitry Volkostrelov, Ivan Vyrypayev, Philip Grigoryan.

Professionals work according to classical patterns, and only amateurs can experiment.

There is a known effect of the “Black Square”. The technique of the creator seems simple, the viewer believes that the work was done simply and effortlessly. Usually such works are a challenge to the theme of art, contrasting with our traditional ideas. So the author of such an experiment must first understand what he is actually going to protest against. And it is likely that such an artist is capable of creating traditional things. So, the most popular young Russian director Dmitry Volkostrelov works between the theater and contemporary art. He asks his actors not to play with intonation, but to submit the text in a neutral voice. But sometimes in the performances there are game episodes, looking at which you can not say that the director is an amateur and can not work with actors. Critics and festivals work for the radical theater.

This myth is refuted by the success of directors who already have the status of living classics: Lev Dodin, Pyotr Fomenko, Sergei Zhenovach. These masters are not offended by awards, nominations and brilliant reviews. The performances will be quite pleasant to conservative spectators, but the main thing, certainly not in a departure from experiments. The directors, although they adhere to the traditions, make live and modern performances.

Public deceive: it goes to the classics, and gets a reading of the director.

There are no such performances, put exactly according to the idea of ​​the author. Even the first and textbook already staged Chekhov’s plays in the Art Theater from the playwright itself caused a lot of questions. But it was then that the well-known image of drama appeared. There is no point in studying classical literature on theatrical productions. It is necessary to read books independently. “Dead Souls” in the modern theater will not have much in common with the classical way of Gogol’s work. Exceptions can be considered unless the performances put by the playwrights themselves, and even then, not without conventions. The theater of Ivan Vyrypaev attracts attention in this aspect. He himself puts his plays, which he calls “texts for execution.” These works are already created under a definite director’s decision.

Modern directors do not even understand what the author wrote about or do not want to know.

It is difficult to find such a director who, on his own initiative, works with a work of an artist uninteresting to him. We can see a significant discrepancy between the performances and the classical images of Gogol, Chekhov and Pushkin. But the choice of material is carried out on the basis of a complex analysis, and not just speculation on the classics. In the scandalous Tanneryser of Wagner, director Timofei Kulyabin drew attention to the conflict of ancient culture with her love for the body and bodily love, and Christianity. There for a long time they taught to renounce the carnal. This was the basis for the production. The main character was a film director who shoots a scandalous film. There, Jesus, the central figure of faith, enters into a love affair with the ancient goddess of love Venus. In the libretto of the original “Tannhauser” this conflict can be found, simply in veiled form. Its director tried to show, reflecting on the author’s message.

Directors specifically use religious symbols, trying to ridicule the feelings of believers.

Religion supplies any of its symbols, images or text with some explanatory instruction. And if the secular artist in his interpretation departs from this document, this does not at all mean deliberate insult to the feelings of believers. Religion is an important part of modern culture. Its phenomenon is of interest not only to representatives of a certain confession. In secular culture, in the theater, there have always been, there are and will be images that go back to religion, but are viewed from the other side.

Theater sees in politics and religion only scandalous topics.

It is usually believed that writers and poets, especially classics, know everything about the spiritual and social life of society. Literature still has an untouchable authority. But the theater is not considered full in terms of perception of life. It seems that there is no place to talk about religion and politics, it’s too serious. Those who think this way, we need to see the performance of Kirill Serebrennikov “(M) student.” The formulation brilliantly reveals the phenomenon of religious fundamentalism, the state of Russian society is examined. It can even sympathize with the extremist, and “too smart” will gradually translate into a marginal state.


Theater should teach the viewer and educate.

What adult person wants to be brought up? Why do we have to think that the playwright, director and actors are necessarily smarter and more experienced than the viewer? When someone from the stage is taught or condemned by someone acting as a preacher or a victim, this indicates the beginning of a serious crisis in creativity. Real art is not a lesson and a graft of values, but an equal communication between authors and spectators.

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