THE LIFE OF MANTheatre “Teatr”, Perm
Boris Milgram has wanted to stage Leonid Andreev’s play The Life of Man for twenty years. ‘I understood that it was impossible then to stage it in theatre with the same effect which it produces while reading’, explains the director. ‘It is necessary to find its original means of expression, its own language.’ The idea got implemented when the famous composer and jazzman Vladimir Chekasin joined the work. He created a separate piece using various musical forms that provided an opportunity to the director to use various theatric forms as well. The whole performance consists of seemingly incompatible forms and genres, being a sort of a review.
The art-opera of the Perm theatre includes drama, choir, dance and even puppet scenes which, according to the director, are to a certain degree self-sufficient and even can exist separately. Boris Milgram confesses that in spite of the fact that he does not like the term ‘total theatre’, The Life of Man is an example of such theatre for him. It's probably no coincidence that this large-scale and ambitious project came up in Perm, the city that over recent years has been impressing the whole country with its claims to be ‘the cultural capital of Russia’ and with a big amount of cultural initiatives and investments in culture. Boris Milgram is one of the initiators of the Perm Develoment Program that is why in the production one may also try to see the reflection on victories and failures.