Artem, you have been in the theater since 1988. Do you remember your first role?
Artem Kaminsky: For the first time I was … taken on stage in the play “Soldier and Eve” in the tower, from where I had to shout: “Inhabitants of the kingdom, rejoice!” The tower shook violently, if it fell, it would definitely become crippled.
Your theater is extraordinary.
Artem Kaminsky: Yes, there is nothing like it in the world anymore. It is located in the form of a five-pointed star – a masterpiece of architecture of the era of the Stalin Empire. The ceiling frescoes were painted by Lev Bruni, the portal was made according to the sketches of the graphic designer Vladimir Favorsky.
Have you played with a unique artist, Vladimir Zeldin State of the Union Award winner?
Artem Kaminsky: Yes, it was a performance of “Hunted Horse” based on the play by Françoise Sagan. Zeldin already had vision problems, but he was in excellent physical shape. And no problems with the head. The theater was a “dance teacher”, from which many Soviet musicals subsequently developed. And Zeldin shone in this production. In 2014, the winners of the State Union Prize in the field of literature and art were honored on the stage of the Slavianski bazaar in Vitebsk. Vladimir Zeldin received this award for playing the role of Don Quixote in the play “The Man from La Mancha”. The lines of this performance became his life’s motto: “Dream! Let the dream change. Fight once defeated. Seek an impossible task. And live until the end of time.”
At concerts on the occasion of the Day of Unity of the Peoples of Belarus and Russia, the audience is half-Russian and half-Belarusian
What does it take to live a hundred years?
Artem Kaminsky: Live like Zeldin. The actor celebrated his 101 years on the stage of his native theater, to which he gave 70 years. He was a lover of life, loved sports and horseback riding. “Breathe in the invigorating air of life with your whole chest,” his hero said in the play, “and consider how you should live it. Call not your own anything but soul.”
Do you have a favorite performance?
Artem Kaminsky: “Testament of a Chaste Womanizer”. The plot is twisted. Don Juan, whom I play, wants to go to confession to be buried according to all the rules, but no one wants to go to him except a young monk.
You have an interesting premiere – “The Wedding” by Nikolai Gogol, where you play the main role.
Artem Kaminsky: It’s our classic. The play takes place in the first half of the 19th century. Podkolesin, which I play, is looking for a wife. For several months, matchmaker Fekla Ivanovna has been visiting her.
Well, what’s your Podkolesin?
Artem Kaminsky: It’s not easy. He fears how badly he wants to get married, but he is unable to get down to business. He thinks excitedly about his future family life, but then he panics and jumps out the window. On the one hand, it is a comedy, a farce, on the other, the drama of a single person.
Who is the director of the play?
Artem Kaminsky: The production was directed by Honored Artist of the Republic of Crimea Yuri Makovsky. The director has kept the classic text without altering it or distorting its meaning. The performance features an excellent cast. The role of Agafya Tikhonovna is played by Maria Golubkina, and the role of Kochkarev is played by Andrey Kaikov.
How did you, an Uralian, end up in Moscow?
Artem Kaminsky: I come from the southern Urals and I was just destined for the stage from childhood. Mom and dad were artists. I absorbed the smell from backstage and the dust from the stage. My first role in my school years was a monster in the play “The Scarlet Flower”. I remember my plastic kneecap.
Why did you choose the Moscow Art Theater School?
Artem Kaminsky: After school I went to Moscow to enter, and immediately to several theater universities. He went to everything, but stopped at the Moscow Art Theater School. The course was recruited by Oleg Efremov, and Andrey Myagkov taught. When we arrived they kissed the chipped steps.
What impression did the study leave?
Artem Kaminsky: I was inundated with a new flow of information, I was happy. Once Oleg Nikolaevich was at the reception of the Minister of Culture of the USSR Demichev, and he said that he would come to take an exam at the Studio School. Oleg Nikolaevich not only rehearsed with us, but we even rearranged the piano under his guidance. The first year, we all had to read Stanislavsky’s Ethics.
You are the permanent host of the State of the Union concerts. Which is the most memorable?
Artem Kaminsky: In the Brest Fortress. The concert took place on the evening of the anniversary of the beginning of the Great Patriotic War, the memorial looked very majestic. Thousands of people from Russia and Belarus gathered. Lyudmila Chursina and Vladimir Gostyukhin read letters from the front. I also remember the concert on the occasion of the Day of Unity of the Peoples of Belarus and Russia in our theater. The peculiarity of these concerts is that the audience hall is half Russian and half Belarusian.
And you are a Union State student.
Artem Kaminsky: There are very good traditions at the festival “Slavianski Bazaar in Vitebsk”, one of them is the awarding of diplomas to cultural representatives who contribute to the development of friendship between the peoples of Belarus and Russia, to the preservation of a community cultural space. I received a diploma from the Standing Committee “For the creative embodiment of the ideas of friendship between the peoples of Belarus and Russia”. I was very touched that my work was so appreciated.
Artem Kaminsky, People’s Artist of Russia, was born on February 24, 1965 in Chelyabinsk in the family of Kaminsky, Marx Borisovitch, later director of the Chelyabinsk Regional Philharmonic Orchestra, and Henrietta Vasilievna.
In 1986 he graduated from the Moscow Art Theater School. Since 1988 – actor of the Central Academic Theater of the Russian Army. Engaged in the best performances of the theater.
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