Black Russian Theatrical Quest Based on Pushkin Novel Includes Techno-Folklore, a Bloody Masquerade and Wild Dancing at Funerals

Recently renovated, the old mansion on Small Gnezdnikovsky Lane has become a platform for the most unusual performance of the season–a theatrical quest entitled “Black Russian” based on Pushkin’s novel “Dubrovsky”. The conceptual incarnation of the classic story of the failed landowner’s son, who becomes a robber, succeeds mostly due to the St. Petersburg director and hero of underground theater, Maxim Didenko.

A red carpet leads the audience to the Troyekurov House. The first thing they meet there is a casket with a mirror down. It is a kind of invitation for you to look at your own reflection – it’s an important part of the ritual, because during the next phase your face will be covered by a mask: animal masks are issued to all the visitors. A fox, an owl or a deer – that’s what one will become at the whim of the Troyekurov servants. The mask will also determine your future directions. Those who come in couples will definitely be divided into different groups, which undoubtedly will enhance the experience of the performance.

“Do not remove the mask,”–warn the servants–“Kirill Petrovich could take you as insiders, and it will end badly.”

Photo from www.blackrussianshow.ru
Photo from www.blackrussianshow.ru

Within these words lays one of the keys to understanding “Black Russian”. In the kitchen, guests are invited to commemorate the departed. A table filled with black food: vegetables, fruits, brown bread and, of course, Russian vodka. In fact, this is not a wake, but an invitation to the underworld. The performance in front of you will be carried out by restless ghosts, descended from the pages of an unfinished novel. The mask is your protection from the spirit world.

In room after room, you bear witness to terrifying performances. First is the barn with hay, a live pig and geese, in which the “living dead” does their sinister dance. Then the dark forest in the mirrored room, where the Dubrovsky gang must be hiding…  It seems that somewhere close should be the famous Twin Peaks. Getting lost in the woods is so easy, but getting out of it is almost impossible without the help of a guide.


Each of the guest-groups watches its own performance, and has its own guide. A meeting of all parties occurs only at the bloody wedding in the main hall, which is at the same time both a green grove and a house blazing with hellfire. Whether it is a Dubrovsky dream, or the life of Masha… there’s no need to define, because the whole point is in the atmosphere of the house. The director offers you to hear it, to see it and to smell it. In short, it’s going to be difficult for those who are used to taking a nap during a common costume play.

Where: Small Gnezdnikovsky Lane, 9 Building 1
Price: From 5900 to 7900 rubles depending on the date and time of the performance session.

Book tickets here.

About Stanislav 20 Articles
Journalist, columnist. Aware of all the cultural events in Moscow. Always knows what to do with free time, therefore usually feels a lack of it.

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