About the author:
Oksana V. Gavrilchenko — PhD in Philology, Senior Researcher, A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 a, 121069 Moscow, Russia.
ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0855-9848
The article is devoted to the history of the creation and existence on the stage of a unique play, which was based on three small parody works of Russian classical literature: the poetic story “The House in Kolomna” by A. Pushkin, the story “The Carriage” by N. Gogol and the poem “The Tambov Treasurer’s Wife” by M. Lermontov. Its peculiarity is that it was performed by one actor, V. Yakhontov, in “the smallest theater in the world”, i.e. “Sovremennik”. According to the reviews of the performance’s witnesses, the actor knew how to subtly play with literary material. In different works, Yakhontov noticed the common, and using the technique of assembling texts, he created an artistic wholeness in which new connections between its constituent parts were revealed. The typescript of the composition “Yes, vaudeville is a thing!” allows to see what changes the actor makes in order to turn the works intended for reading into a performance, that will be played by one person. We were primarily interested in the edit made by Yakhontov in the text of Gogol’s “The Carriage”. Not being able to watch “Yes, vaudeville is a thing!” in the recording, we get an idea of it from the artist’s memories and critical responses. Judging by these reviews, contemporaries assessed the performance with its undoubted artistic merit, not so much from the point of view of aesthetic and theatrical studies as from the point of view of its correspondence to the spirit of the time.