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Showing posts from October, 2011

Our Lady of Vladimir

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Nikolai Nevrev: The Market

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Destruction Of An Ancient Cathedral In Volokolamsk

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Destruction Of An Ancient Cathedral In Volokolamsk: A unique Cathedral of Virgin Mary of Kazan is located next to Volokolamsk. The place is abandoned now and protected by the state meaning that no protection is actually available and access is free. The Cathedral was constructed in 1780 … Read more...

Gogol - An Essay by William Lyon Phelps

Nikolai Vassilievich Gogol was born at Sorotchinetz, in Little Russia, in March, 1809. The year in which he appeared on the planet proved to be the literary annus mirabilis of the century; for in that same twelvemonth were born Charles Darwin, Alfred Tennyson, Abraham Lincoln, Poe, Gladstone, and Holmes. His father was a lover of literature, who wrote dramatic pieces for his own amusement, and who spent his time on the old family estates, not in managing the farms, but in wandering about the fields, and beholding the fowls of the air. The boy inherited much from his father; but, unlike Turgenev, he had the best of all private tutors, a good mother, of whom his biographer says, Elle demeure toujours sa plus intime amie.[1]

At the age of twelve, Nikolai was sent away to the high school at Nezhin, a town near Kiev. There he remained from 1821 to 1828. He was an unpromising student, having no enthusiasm for his lessons, and showing no distinction either in scholarship or deportment. Fortun…

Elena Obraztsova - Dark cherry shawl

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Dmitri Hvorostovsky - Ya Vas Lyublyu (Met 125)

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The Metropolitan Opera 125th Anniversary Gala - March 25, 2009.
Dmitri Hvorostovsky in Tchaikovsky's Pique Dame.

Glitter and gold at the new Bolshoi Theatre

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More photos here.

Russian Red Army Choir - Song of the Volga Boatmen (1965)

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Valerie Bryusov: Protection: a Christmas story

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from The Republic of the Sothern Cross, and other stories (1918)

COLONEL R. told me this story. We were staying together at the estate of our mutual relatives, the M's. It was Christmas-time, and in the drawingroom one evening the talk turned on ghosts. The Colonel took no part in thc conversation, but when we were alone together — we slept in the same room — he told me the following story.

This happened five-and-twenty years ago, and more: it was in the middle of the seventies. I had only just got my commission. Our regiment was stationed at *, a small provincial town in the government of X. We spent our time as officers usually do: we drank, played cards, and paid attentions to women.

Among the people living in the neighbourhood, one stood out above the rest, Mme. C—— Elena Grigorievna. Strictly speaking, she did not belong to the society there, for until lately she had always lived at Petersburg. But being left a widow a year previously she had settled down to live on her cou…

Dmitry Merezhkovsky: A Prayer

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CAST prostrate, in mourning,
Wingless, self-scorning,
Grief in a gust
Flings us, dust upon dust.
We desire not, we dare not,
We believe not, we care not,
No wisdom has worth.
God, do thou dower us,
Kindle, empower us,
Give of thy mirth.
From the languor that clings
Give us wings! Give us wings!
Wings of thy Spirit.

Deutsch and Yarmolinsky, comps. Modern Russian Poetry. 1921.

Peter the Great Interrogating the Tsarevich Alexei Petrovich

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Nizhny Novgorod: Now And Then

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Nizhny Novgorod: Now And Then: One dweller of Nizhny Novgorod has thought it might be interesting to take some pictures of the city and compare them with old photos taken 50-100 years ago. Look what he’s got! In the picture: Bolshaya Pokrovskaya Street. The Kremlin. … Read more...

Leonid Andreyev : The Crushed Flower

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His name was Yura.

He was six years old, and the world was to him enormous, alive and bewitchingly mysterious. He knew the sky quite well. He knew its deep azure by day, and the white-breasted, half silvery, half golden clouds slowly floating by. He often watched them as he lay on his back upon the grass or upon the roof. But he did not know the stars so well, for he went to bed early. He knew well and remembered only one star—the green, bright and very attentive star that rises in the pale sky just before you go to bed, and that seemed to be the only star so large in the whole sky.

But best of all, he knew the earth in the yard, in the street and in the garden, with all its inexhaustible wealth of stones, of velvety grass, of hot sand and of that wonderfully varied, mysterious and delightful dust which grown people did not notice at all from the height of their enormous size. And in falling asleep, as the last bright image of the passing day, he took along to his dreams a bit of hot, …

To Chekhov's Memory by Alexander Kuprin

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He lived among us…. You remember how, in early childhood, after the long summer holidays, one went back to school. Everything was gray; it was like a barrack; it smelt of fresh paint and putty; one's school-fellows rough, the authorities unkind. Still one tried somehow to keep up one's courage, though at moments one was seized with home-sickness. One was occupied in greeting friends, struck by changes in faces, deafened by the noise and movement. But when evening comes and the bustle in the half dark dormitory ceases, O what an unbearable sadness, what despair possesses one's soul. One bites one's pillow, suppressing one's sobs, one whispers dear names and cries, cries with tears that burn, and knows that this sorrow is unquenchable. It is then that one realizes for the first time all the shattering horror of two things: the irrevocability of the past and the feeling of loneliness. It seems as if one would gladly give up all the rest of life, gladly suffer any tort…

Berezovsky plays Liszt - Mephisto Waltz No. 1

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Travelling In The Urals

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Travelling In The Urals: Enjoy some photos taken during a seven-day tour in the Urals! On the way. When the road is this good, it seems like you can drive forever! Approaching the city of Kazan. On the left there is a city-island called … Read more...

Anatoly Mariengof - Two poems

The night, like a tear, flowed out of an immense eye
and rolled down along the roofs upon the lashes.
Sorrow rose up like Lazarus
and raced in the streets to cry and blame everyone,
throwing herself around necks – and everyone flipped
and screamed: you're insane!
and with whoops of fear beat the eardrums
ringing like diamond cards.

                                                           1917

A dark spot as though from a squashed cranberry.
Quiet please.  Don't slam the door.  Dear Sir...
Four very simple letters:
 – dead.

  1918

Essays on Russian Novelists - Chekhov

ANTON PAVLOVICH CHEKHOV, like Pushkin, Lermontov, Bielinski, and Garshin, died young, and although he wrote a goodly number of plays and stories which gave him a high reputation in Russia, he did not live to enjoy international fame. This is partly owing to the nature of his work, but more perhaps to the total eclipse of other contemporary writers by Gorki. There are signs now that his delicate and unpretentious art will outlast the sensational flare of the other's reputation. Gorki himself has generously tried to help in the perpetuation of Chekhov's name, by publishing a volume of personal reminiscences of his dead friend. Like Gogol and Artsybashev, Chekhov was a man of the South, being born at Taganrog, a seaport on a gulf of the Black Sea, near the mouth of the river Don. The date of his birth is the 17 January 1860. His father was a clever serf, who, by good business foresight, bought his freedom early in life. Although the father never had much education himself, he ga…

Arkady Gaydar: Marusya

The spy waded through the bog, put on a Red Army soldier’s uniform, and walked out on the road. A girl was collecting cornflowers in a wheat field. She walked up to him and asked for a knife to level the flowers. He gave her the knife, asked her name, and, having been informed that people in the Soviet Union live happily, he started laughing and singing songs for no apparent reason. “Don’t you recognize me?” the girl asked, surprised. “I am Marusya, Lieutenant Egorov’s daughter. And these flowers are meant for my father.” She patted the flowers tenderly, her eyes filled with tears. The spy put the knife back in his pocket, and walked off without saying a word. At the checkpoint, Marusya told the soldiers, “I met a soldier of the Red Army. I told him what my name was and it was so strange, that in response he began singing songs and laughing.” The commander then frowned and called for an officer on duty, ordering him to send a patrol after the “fun-loving man.” The horsemen left, and …

Mansions of Rublyovka

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Mansions of Rublyovka: The so called Rublyovka is a residential territory of 300 square kilometers (which is twice as much as Leichtenstein) which is located in Moscow area. Over 30 thousand people reside here in more than 10 thosand mansions. We want to … Read more...

Life 30 km Away From Moscow

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Life 30 km Away From Moscow: Thousands of former military men, are living in houses which are under the threat of collapse and have no heating. After the reduction of anti-aircraft forces in Moscow area, a lot of presidios became unnecesary, so did the people who … Read more...

Kirov's Alla Sizova in Le Corsaire Variation

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In March 1958, although still a student at the Vaganova Academy in Leningrad (now St Petersburg), 18-year-old Alla Sizova made her debut with the Kirov Ballet, dancing the role of Queen of the Dryads in Don Quixote. The clip was filmed a few months later at a competition when she danced the Le Corsaire pas de deux with a fellow student, Rudolf Nureyev. Soviet dancers often swapped variations (solos) around between ballets, and here Sizova replaces the usual Le Corsaire choreography (here's a performance recorded in 2010) with her Dryads variation in order to show off her prodigious jump, an attribute that would earn her the nickname "Flying" Sizova.

Even apart from those amazing opening leaps, this is fabulous dancing. Watch the beautifully sustained balances on pointe, the airily relaxed arms, the lyrical carriage of head and neck. Note her phrasing: the luxurious way that she fills out the music for the opening jumps and then, from 0:45, starts to anticipate it to buy…

Georgy Chulkov: Shurochka and Venya

On the corner of Saint Michel Boulevard and Rue Monsieur le Prince – in a cramped and dusty shop where they sell nails, wire and other house wares – stood Venya Pavlushin holding a tin pot in his hand. “Fete, le trou, mosie, ici ici,” Venya told the craftsman, pointing to the bottom of the pot he had purchased. Venya spoke very poor French, but that did not make him even a bit embarrassed. The owner of the shop – a fat, red-lipped, and, as it appeared, funny man – looked at Venya puzzled, “Make a hole in the pot…Why?” But Venya said it over and over again: 
“Fete, le trou, mosie, ici ici.” Venya took out from his pocket a small brush made from multicolored feathers and put it against the pot. If you make a hole and stick the brush into it, then the pot would resemble a feathery helmet. Assyrian warriors wore such helmets. Venya put the pot on his head. His serious and anxious face together with this sudden gesture greatly amused the honorable shop owner and two female customers. Every…

Igor Chapurin

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Igor Chapurin is not only a famous Russian fashion designer, who was the first to show Russian haute couture fashion to the world. He is an embodiment of all the best tendencies in Russian fashion industry - modern, laconic and elegant silhouettes and patterns. He is famous for his inventions of new methods of embroidery and "Russian straw" - golden threads stranded into cloth by unique technology. Now the whole world is infatuated by Russian avant-garde, all thanks to Igor Chapurin.
Igor Chapurin was born on 21 March 1968 in a small northern town Velikiye Luki, Pskov region. His parents were famous stockinet manufactures, and Igor followed in their footsteps - in 1991 he entered the Vitebsk technological Institute, choosing "clothes designer" as his special subject. He set himself an objective to take part in the International Contest of young talents, which was held by Nina Ricci brand in Paris. After the ending of his study course in Paris, Chapurin was invit…

Aleksandr Volkov: Urfin Juce and His Wooden Army

One night, a violent storm broke out. The locals were convinced it was the result of Urfin Juce’ ill will, and it gave them shivers, as they thought their homes were about to be wiped off the face of the Earth. But nothing of the kind happened. However, when Urfin Juce woke up the next morning and went to inspect his garden, he saw little bright green weeds cropping up on flowerbeds. The storm must have brought the seeds from somewhere, although he never found out what part of the country they had actually come from. “How long has it been since I last pulled weeds out?” Urfin Juce muttered. “And look how they are popping up again. Just wait – I’ll be done with you before the night falls.” Urfin went to the woods to check his traps and spent the entire day there. Secretly from Guam, he snuck in with him a frying pan and some grease, killed a fat rabbit and ate it with appetite. On coming home, Urfin gasped with astonishment, as he saw his garden: the flowerbed was covered with strong …

Nina Sorokina Bolshoi Ballet Principal 1960s 1970s 1980s Dead at age 69 ...

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Nikolay Roerich

Nikolay ROERICH (RERIKH) (9.10.1874, St. Petersburg, Russia — 13.12.1947, Naggar, India) — Russian philosopher, painter, archaeologist and mystic.

Son of a well-off notary public, Roerich attended the Imperial Academy of Arts (1893-1897) and, simultaneously, studied law at St. Petersburg University. Early in his career, Roerich distinguished himself as his generation's greatest painter of scenes from ancient Russian history; representative works include The Messenger (1897), Visitors from Overseas (2 versions, 1901 and 1902), Slavs on the Dnieper (1905), and Battle in the Heavens (2 versions, 1909 and 1912). Roerich was associated with several Symbolist literary-artistic journals, including The Golden Fleece, as well as the World of Art Society, which he chaired from 1910 to 1916. From 1906 to 1917, he directed the School of the Imperial Society for the Encouragement of the Arts. Like many of his World of Art colleagues, Roerich designed productions for Diaghilev's famed Balle…

Inside The Motherland

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Inside The Motherland: The Motherland Calls is one of the tallest monuments in the world. It is located in Mamayev Kurgan in Volgograd, Russia, and commemorates the Battle of Stalingrad. Two hundred steps, symbolizing the two hundred days of the Battle of Stalingrad, … Read more...

Large-scale Exhibition of Nikolai Ge Opens in Moscow

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An exhibition of the well-known Russian painter Nikolai Nikolaevich Ge (1831–1894) - one of the biggest projects of the year - will be opened on October, 19th in the Tretyakov Gallery on Krymsky Val. The exposition will include about 230 works from funds of the Tretyakov Gallery, museums of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and other foreign collections. For the complete collection of Nikolai Ge’s drawings will be displayed to general public. The exhibition will run till February, 5th 2012. It is remarkable, that in the course of preparations for the exhibition, Ge’s painting “What is truth?” was restored. The restoration works were preceded by an examination that resulted in a discovery: under the painting layer they found another work – “Mercy”. RIC

Konstantin Balmont: In the White Land

THE CANDID psalm of Silence rises whitely burning,The icy wastes are lit with sunset’s radiant yearning.The drowsy elements in yawning vistas freeze,And voiceless are the argent Polar liturgies.

Above the sea of whiteness, crimson curtains falling;No fields or forests here, clear crystal shines appalling.White altars stretch beneath the changeless icy skies,A prayer, not suppliant, a psalm, not voiced,—arise.

Modern Russian Poetry.  1921.

A Journey Through Three Russian Cities

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A Journey Through Three Russian Cities: Let’s walk over the roofs of famous buildings located in Moscow, Saint-Petersburg and Vyborg city in Leningrad region and get the view of their sights. Red Square. The Historical Museum. Surveillance cameras. Funny advertising. ‘The Chicken Is Pleased’ The picture … Read more...

Icons That Work Wonders

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Icons That Work Wonders: Wooden icons of Alexander Markov from Sayansk city are filled with deep spiritual significance. Wood has always been considered as a live material and consecrated icons are known to work wonders. That’s why the citizens of Sayansk have a tradition … Read more...