Beauty will save

Beauty in everything

Vintage photo of Blue Bird by Constantin Stanislavsky

Vintage photo of Blue Bird by Constantin Stanislavsky

Fairy – M. Germanova. Vintage photo of Blue Bird by Constantin Stanislavsky

Blue Bird by Constantin Stanislavsky
We must be brave enough to see the hidden“. Hundred years ago, Stanislavsky decided to show on the stage something which was impossible: the souls of men, the deity of the underworld, the revived objects, the realm of the future and much more. So there was a performance of “Blue Bird” (by Belgian author Maurice Maeterlinck), which literally consisted of amazing tricks. One of the heroes broke off their fingers, and they grew back, under cover of night dancing plates, came to life milk, bread, fire, water. Nothing like that the Russian public had seen before. Everything was done with a revolutionary innovation, characteristic feature of the Moscow Art Theatre those years. After 150 rehearsals the play was first played on September 30, 1908 at the Moscow Art Theater. Due to the unique vintage photo greeting card we have the opportunity to see how it looked then.

Blue Bird by Constantin Stanislavsky

Night. actress Muratova

Konstantin Sergeyevich had to put a performance in which the protagonists are children – a boy and a girl Tiltil and Mytilene. They wake up on Christmas night and see in front of the house a rich feast. So begins this tale.

At the same moment you hear a knock at the door, and the curve appears on the verge of an old woman in a green dress and red cap. This is fairy Berilyuna. Its annoying that children do not know the obvious things. They are told to go to search the Bluebird. “We must be brave enough to see the invisible,” – she said, holding out a green hat with Tiltil diamond. Once Tiltil wears a hat, all is wonderfully transfigured: the old witch turns into a princess.

There are souls of hours of soul cakes. The fire appears as a rapidly moving man in red tights. From the crane begins to beat the sparkling fountain of water, and from its streams comes a girl with her hair in flowing robes. She immediately confronts the Fire. This shower of water. From the table drops a pitcher, and spilled milk from a white figure rises. It is timid and shy soul of milk.

Unpublished manuscript of “Blue Bird” appeared at the disposal of the Moscow Art Theatre in 1906, but only two years later – the 10th anniversary of the theater – Stanislavsky has prepared the play full of thousands of directorial tricks.

For example, in the first act over the fire appear white shining plates. They dance, and then disappear as suddenly as they appeared. Tricks with cymbals doing a actors, which the audience can not see. They perform the role of “black people” as he called them Stanislavsky. Black man dressed from head to toe in a suit of black velvet. On his head a velvet hood with a cutout for the eyes, the hands – gloves, the legs are the same shoes. Acting on a background of black velvet, it remains invisible to others.

Granddaughter and neighbor of Berlengo, actresses Birens, Nikolayeva Stanislavsky managed to convey the horrors of the night: an episode in which the ghosts are jumping on the stage. This black men ran out with long poles in their hands. Originally the dance was made of stars. Dancers danced in a black velvet dresses, but they had a head cap, which diverge from the narrow luminous band: the audience saw only the bands light.

Despite the fairy-tale plot, Stanislavsky created a surprisingly believable world stage with fantastic costumes. Shameless was the treacherous Cat (Ivan Moskvin), simple-faithful dog (Basil Luga). Friable nature of the different bread (Vladimir Gribunin). Brittle and unreliable Sugar (Apollo Gorev). Boy Tiltil (Sophia Halyutina) differed heroic character, and his sister Mytilene (Alisa Koonen) – on the contrary, was a child, a woman who feels all the dangers.

A great composer Ilya Sats wrote the music for the play. Its sounds were that blazing fire, the boiling milk, then the flight of a bird! Particularly difficult was to compose the music for the first scene, where the water begins to flow from the tap. When Szasz performed his work, Stanislavsky said, “Ilya, now it’s raining in the street. Let’s go out on the roof and listen, how drops are falling.” And two theatrical figures rushed to the roof: they soaked to the skin, listening to the drumming drops. Echoes of rain MAT audience hears to this day.

Throughout the play, Tiltil and Mytilene, getting into different adventures, learn the truth of the world, fighting with the servants of the Night (obscurantism, disease, war), learning to help each other in trouble, understand nature, hear animals and humans.

Vintage photo of Blue Bird by Constantin Stanislavsky