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Theatres of Dushanbe.

Theatres of Dushanbe.

“The external gesture, being only a reflection of the inner spiritual movement that generates it and guides it, must be inferior to it in development”

From the notebook of François Delsarte.

Theatrical tours in Dushanbe.

The emergence of modern Tajik theatrical art belongs to the end of the 20s. XXth century. In 1929, on the basis of an amateur circle in Dushanbe, the first professional theater arose, now known as the Tajik State Academic Drama Theater. A. Lahuti.
The main progressive value of the theater named after A. Lahuti was that he was closely connected with modern reality, with the life of the people. The repertoire reflected the heroism of the revolutionary struggle ("Mutiny" by D. Furmanov and S. Polivanov - 1931, 1939; "Two Communists" by K. Yashin - 1931), the romance of the people's feat ("Struggle" by A. Usmanov - 1933; "Red Sticks" S. Ulugzoda - 1941), the pathos of building a new life ("Valley of Happiness" G. Abdullo - 1936; "Slander"
Saidmurodova and I. Ismoilov - 1938, "Shodmon" - S. Ulugzoda, 1939), the pathos of the inner world of another national environment ("Treachery and Love" by F. Schiller - 1937; "Othello" by W. Shakespeare - 1939, 1941, 1948, 1963).
In 1935, the Tajik Musical Theater was established in Dushanbe, which was transformed into the Tajik Opera and Ballet Theater (now the Tajik Academic Opera and Ballet Theater named after S. Aini). In 1937, the Russian Drama Theater was opened in Dushanbe on the basis of the Moscow Studio, directed by AD Diky.
In 1938, the Republican Puppet Theater was organized in Stalinabad with Tajik and Russian sections. With the beginning of the Great Patriotic War, these groups disintegrated. Later, a puppet theater was organized in Chkalovsk, and then in Dushanbe.
At the end of the 30s. the leading theaters of Dushanbe are entering a period of mature mastery, testifying to the growth of the artistic culture of the groups, their ability to solve complex creative problems. This was eloquently spoken by the best works of the theater named after A. Lakhuti - "Red Sticks", "Othello", "Rustam and Sukhrob" (play by A. Pirmu-hammad-zade and V. Volkenstein, 1941), the Tajik Opera and Ballet Theater - opera " Uprising in Vos” and “The Blacksmith Kova” by A. Balasanyan, the ballet “Du Gul” (“Two Roses”) by A. S. Lensky.
During the Great Patriotic War, the theaters of the capital staged performances based on the plays: "Mother's Heart" (1942), "Nadir's House" by J. Ikrami and A. Faiko (1943), "On Fire" by S. Ulugzoda (1944), "Roziya "S. Balasanyan and Z. Shakhidi (play by E. Akubzhanov and N. Zeleransky, 1942), "Song of Anger" by S. A. Balasanyan (1942), "Front" by A. Korneichuk, "Invasion" by L. Monov, "Hope Durov” by K. Lipskerov and A. Kochetov and others.
Heroic motives, the theme of the moral strength of the people, their spiritual stamina sounded from the stage of the theaters of the capital not only in performances about the patriotism of our contemporaries, but also through the display of events of ancient times.
So, in 1942 the theater. A. Lahuti showed the folk-heroic drama Fuente Ovehuna by Lope de Vega, the performance was called Laurencia. Despite the difficulties of the war years, the state paid great attention to the development of the Tajik theater.
In 1942, the construction of the opera and ballet theater was completed in Dushanbe (the authors of the architectural project were A. A. Yunger, D. I. Bilibin, V. D. Golli, and S. E. Zakharov). On March 14, the first theatrical season in the new building was opened with the premiere of the opera The Blacksmith Kova by S. A. Balasanyan.
Dec. 1943 in Dushanbe, by decision of the government of Tajikistan, on the basis of the mobile operetta ensemble of the Tajik State Philharmonic, the Theater of Musical Comedy was created. He began working on January 1, 1944 at the premises of the Tajik Opera and Ballet Theater and gave performances in Russian.
In August 1944, by decision of the Council of People's Commissars of the republic, the State Youth Theater-Studio was created on the basis of the studio under the Central Committee of the Komsomol of Tajikistan and the House of the Red Army (the studio was organized in 1943, artistic director R. A. Korokh). In the summer of 1947, the Russian Theater for Young Spectators was created on the basis of the youth theater studio.
During the war years, some theatrical and musical groups of the RSFSR and Ukraine were evacuated to Tajikistan. From the end of 1941 to the middle of 1944, the Leningrad Comedy Theater, the Voronezh Operetta Theater, the Ukrainian Dumka Chapel, and the Ukrainian SSR Symphony Orchestra performed in the capital.
The work of the evacuated teams contributed to the improvement of the skills of Tajik artists, their mastery of new genres, enrichment of the theater with finds in the field of stylistics, expressive means, stimulated the further development of the best practices of European theatrical culture.
In the fall of 1942, the Department of Arts under the Council of People's Commissars of the Tajik SSR formed a front-line brigade (artistic director R. A. Korokh), which included artists from the theater. A. Lakhuti, soloists and musicians of the opera and ballet theater, dancers and musicians of the Philharmonic, artists of the Russian Drama Theater. Vl. Mayakovsky.
In May 1943, the front-line theater of Tajikistan was organized under the artistic direction of G. P. Menglet. Russian and Tajik artists jointly prepared a performance - a concert "Hello, friends." Together with the advancing army, the theater visited five fronts and gave about a thousand concerts.
Since the 1950s, theaters have staged performances that, for the most part, raised social and ethical problems, showed the formation of the character of a young contemporary: the dramas "Saodat" by S. Saidmurodov and M. Rabiev (1948,1953,1957) , "Sitora" J. Ikrami (1954, 1961), "Exam", "Life and Love" (1958), "Mother's Sentence" (1962), "Letter written by me" (1973) F. Ansori, "Woman's Will" (1961) and "Duty of a Citizen" (1967) A. Sidki, "Radiant Pearl" S. Ulugzoda (1962), "Song of the Mountains" G. Abdullo (1962), "Shadow of Words" M. Bakhti and others they reflect life, the rise in the level of culture and well-being of the people, their everyday work, the emergence of new relationships between people.
The leading place in the repertoire of the Russian theater was occupied by plays by contemporary authors. The productions were successful: “The Russian Question”, “An Alien Shadow”, “The Story of One Love” by K. Simonov, “Old Friends” by L. Malyugin, “For Those at Sea” by B. Lavrenev, “Director”, “One” S. Aleshina, "Years of Wandering", "Tanya", "Irkutsk History", "Waiting" by A. Arbuzov, "Her Friends", "Good Hour", "Traditional Gathering" by V. Rozov, "Personal Business" by A. Stein and others.
The period of the 50s - early 60s. characterized by an influx of new creative forces. Boys and girls came to drama groups from secondary and higher art educational institutions in Dushanbe, Moscow, Leningrad, Tashkent. In the 60s - 70s. the releases of the Tajik studios of GITIS named after. A. V. Lunacharsky.
On the basis of one of them, in 1971, the Tajik State Youth Theater was created. M. Vakhidova. Since 1973, artists have been trained by the Tajik State Institute of Arts named after M. Tursunzade. With the advent of a new generation, there has been a turn in the direction of acting searches, which have absorbed the artistic national traditions and the heritage of the theatrical art of other peoples.
The renewal of the repertoire was also of great importance for the development of acting, directing and scenery art. So, in the 50s - 70s. Tajik theater seeks to take a deeper approach to the historical theme. The performances of the theater named after A. Lakhuti - “Dokhunda” (1954, 1957, 1977), “Scorched Hearts” (1967) and “The Garrison Does Not Surrender” (1975) told about the struggle of the people for independence and happiness, about the establishment of Soviet power in Tajikistan.
Ikrami, “Caravan of Happiness” by M. Mirshakar (1970), “Poem about Bibi Zainab” by S. Said-muradov (1965, 1967). Of fundamental importance were the plays "Hurricane" by G. Abdullo and Sh. Kiyamov (1957), "The Flame of Freedom" (1964) and "Soldiers of the Revolution" (1970) by G. Abdullo.
In these performances, for the first time in the history of Tajik dramaturgy, the images of V. I. Lenin, his associates - N. K. Krupskaya, S. K. Ordzhonikidze, M. V. Frunze and others were created. The repertoire of Tajik theaters was enriched by plays by Russian and Western European classics - Pushkin, Griboedov, Gogol, Ostrovsky, Chekhov, Gorky, Shakespeare, Moliere, Goldoni, Gozzi, Schiller, Balzac, Nushich, as well as works of modern Russian, Uzbek, Azerbaijani, Bashkir, Tatar, Latvian, Estonian, Kyrgyz, Turkmen, Georgian, Armenian, Ossetian playwrights.
In the best performances of the classics (“Guilty Without Guilt”, “Poverty is not a Vice”, “Romeo and Juliet”, “King Lear”, “Servant of Two Masters”, “Imaginary Sick”, “Laurencia”, “The Deer King”) Tajik the theater showed its desire for a fresh modern reading of immortal works.
In the 70s - 80s. the theater named after A. Lahuti first turned to ancient and modern foreign intellectual drama (“Medea” by Euripides - 1977, “Oedipus Rex” by Sophocles - 1985, “Aesop” by Figueiredo - 1971, “Antigone” by Anouilh - 1971, “The Glass Menagerie” by Williams - 1988 and others).
A notable phenomenon on the capital's stage was the production of M. Bulgakov's plays The Cabal of the Hypocrites (1981) and Zoya's Apartment (1990). A number of scenic works resurrect episodes of the distant past of the Tajik people (“Vose” by G. Abdullo - 1937, “1916” by H. Karim and Dungan - 1940, “The Destitute Girl” by J. Ikrami - 1950, etc.).
The first biographical play in the Tajik dramaturgy "Rudaki" by S. Ulugzoda was staged on the stage of the theater. A. Lakhuti in 1958 in the days when the 1100th anniversary of the birth of the founder of the Persian-Tajik literature Abuabdullo Rudaki was celebrated. In 1967 the theater.
A. Lakhuti again turned to one of the best heroic-tragic tales of the Shahnameh epic by Firdavsi "Rustam and Sukhrob" one of the best poems of the classic "Duvalroni and Khizrkhon". In 1980, on the occasion of the 1000th anniversary of the birth of the great Tajik thinker Abuali ibn Sino, two theaters staged performances based on the drama by S. Ulugzod: Russian Theater named after V. Mayakovsky - "The Great Healer" and the Tajik Youth Theater named after M. Vakhidov - "Youth of Abuali Sino".
To the theater. A. Lakhuti in honor of the 2700th anniversary of the Avesta in 2001, N. Tabarov's play "Payomi Zardusht" ("Instructions of Zardusht") was staged. I. Mashrabov played the main role in this performance.
This performance was shown to the audience and participants of the scientific conference dedicated to the Zoroastrian civilization in September 2003. The same theater staged a performance on a historical theme based on Barot Abdurahmon's play "Spitamen and Iskandar" (2001).
For the staging of Moliere's play "Don Juan" presented to the audience at the festival-competition "Parastu - 2003", the theater named after A. Lakhuti received 3rd place. The play "Ismoili Somoni" belongs to Mehmon Bakhti and was staged on the stage of the theater. A. Lakhuti in 1999.
In the repertoire of the Youth Theater. M. Vakhidov, one of the leading performances is the play by A. Sayfulloev "Khurshedsavor", staged during the celebration of the 90th anniversary of M. Tursunzade (2001). The performance about the great Tajik educator, scientist, writer of the  XIXth century also aroused interest in the creative personality, her life complexity, spiritual courage. Ahmad Donishe - "Scientist Adham and others" (play by S. Ulugzoda, 1976).
The theme of creativity, the artist and time was also expanded by performances where poetesses of the 10th, 17th and 19th centuries act as heroes. – Robiya Balkhi by A. Atoboev (1973), Zebunniso by Sh. Kiyamov and M. Sherali (1977), Dilshod by A. Sidki (1976).
In the 70s. there was an active process of rethinking the artistic heritage and therefore new trends in the national classics were identified: the desire for a philosophical understanding of universal problems, a more subtle disclosure of the spiritual world of the heroes of the past.
Appeal to the work of Tajik poets, the improvement of performing arts gave birth in the republic to a poetic theater of one actor, new in form. M. Vakhidov became its founder. The lyric-philosophical solo performances he created (“Alone with Myself” - 1967, 1974, “Motherland and Sons” - 1969, “Love of Life” - 1971) were not only the pinnacle of the outstanding artist’s work, but also entered the golden fund of the theater art of Tajikistan.
In the second half of the 80s, a studio movement began in the Tajik theater. Theater studios appeared in Dushanbe under the guidance of talented young directors who received solid professional training. A new generation of directors and actors, formed in the 70s and 80s. remarkable for its inner wealth and deep interest in many spheres of life and cultural phenomena.
Mastering the means of modern expressive language, young directors and actors establish subtle intellectual psychologism on the national stage. B. Tokhirov created the studio "Red Crescent", V. Akhadov - "Peninsula", F. Kosimov - "Ahorun" ("City of the Gods").
On the basis of the studio of F. Kasymov, on January 1, 1990, the State Experimental Theater for Young Spectators "Akhorun" was created. F. Kosimov acts both as an artist and as a stage designer and set designer.
Breaking the old theatrical aesthetics, refusing the methods of the theater of everyday, direct life correspondence, avoiding the historical and real accuracy of creating an “illusion” of time and place of action on the stage, he prefers a conditional, figurative-metaphorical solution, striking the viewer with a bold invention.
His innovative performances (“Joseph the Lost Will Return to Kanaan” (1989), “Isfandier” - 1992, “Antichrist” (1994), “Sheikh Sanon” (1996), “Shah Faridun” (1997), “Poem of Love” (2000) and others) formed a new direction in the theatrical life of the republic.
At the end of the 20th century, the names of new playwrights appeared on the posters of theaters in Dushanbe, whose works were devoted to the topical problems of our time. The performance of the theater named after A. Lakhuti "The Old Man" (play by N. Abdullayev - 1993) - about the preservation of a high moral character, the loss of which threatens the death of the human race; Youth named after M. Vakhidov - "The Executioner" (based on the novel by Ch. Aitmatov "The Scaffold") in an everyday way tells about the protection of the dignity and honor of a person, about his attitude to land and nature; "Devastated" (play by J. Kuddus) - a story about people broken by social conditions; Russian theater them. Mayakovsky - "The Last Carriage" (play by N. Tabarov) raises the topic of the drug business.
At that time, journalistic performances appeared in the repertoire of the capital's drama theaters, standing up for the dignity and rights of man, his moral values, for peaceful creative work. This is "Drama of the Nation" by S. Ayubi, "Where are we going?" N. Abdulloeva in the theater. A. Lahuti; "Rise of the Dead" and "Forward, cockerels!" Sh. Solekh in the theater named after Vakhidov; "Stairway to Heaven" by A. Khamdam in the Russian theater named after V. Mayakovsky and others.
Contribution to art. the development of the Tajik theater was made by outstanding directors and actors: Kh. Makhmudov, F. Umarov, M. Saidov, A. Saidov, S. Saidm The foundation of the Tajik professional theater was laid by People's Artists of the USSR: M. Kasimov, T. Fozilova, A. Burkhanov, Kh. Gadoev; People's Artists of Tajikistan: G. Bakoeva, S. Tuiboeva, Kh. Rakhmatulloev, M. Khalilov, T. Gafforova, G. Zavkibekov, Kh. Nazarova, A. Mukhamadjonov, M. Vakhidov, M. Isoeva, R. Kasimova; honored artists of the republic: M. Saidov, A. Saidov, A. Sulaimonov and others.
M. Kasimov, an outstanding representative of the older generation of actors, a master of stage art, became famous for the embodiment of the images of the heroes of W. Shakespeare - Othello, King Lear on the Tajik stage.
A true artist of the stage, a man of great talent, the finest artistry was the great master of the Tajik stage A. Burkhanov. His performance of the role of V.I. Lenin was a great event in its time. The best performer of lyrical and dramatic roles of the 30s and 40s. S. Tuiboev in the 50s and 60s. turned to another topic: she created images of mothers, women endowed with a strong will.
Deep poetry, lyricism of performance and strictness of form distinguished the play of another lyric-dramatic actress - T. Fozilova. In the 60s - 70s. In the 20th century, she created a number of strong, sometimes contradictory, characters.
The invariable performer of the roles of women from the people, mothers, actress of the Tajik theater G. Bakoeva became a master of the finest details, reached the ultimate naturalness of folk characters, colorfulness and imagery of speech.
In the 90s of the 20th century and at the beginning of the 21st century, the Akhorun theater toured in Moscow, Belgium, Poland, Holland, France, and Iran. The following theaters performed in Iran: named after A. Lakhuti, Youth Theater named after M. Vakhidov, Dushanbe Puppet Theatre; and in Germany - the folklore theater "Gakhvora" ("Cradle").
Twice performed in St. Petersburg Russian Theater. V. Mayakovsky. The theaters of the capital took part in the decades of art (the first decade took place on April 19-20, 1941, the second decade of literature and art in Moscow in April 1957) and the Days of Culture in the fraternal republics and abroad, in Republican and All-Union reviews and festivals.
Since 1988, annually, and since 1993, every two years, the Republican Theater Festival "Parastu" ("Swallow") has been held in Dushanbe. At this prestigious competition, the Grand Prix is ​​awarded for the best performance, prizes for the best director, for the best female and male roles, for the best artistic and musical design, for the best dramatic debut of a Tajik author, for the best stage embodiment of the Tajik national drama, for the best performance for children, for the best opera, for the best ballet, for the culture of speech, etc.
Dushanbe twice hosted the International Festival of Theaters of Central Asia "Navruz - 1990" and "Navruz - 2003". Three theaters of Tajikistan (Khujand named after K. Khujandi, Khorog named after M. Nazarov, Russian named after V. Mayakovsky), a dance group of India, the Uzbek Republican Theater of Young Spectators, and a theater of Iran took part in the latter.
Now the Tajik Academic Opera and Ballet Theater named after A. S. Ai-ni, Tajik Academic Drama Theatre. A. Lakhuti, State Russian Drama Theater named after V. Mayakovsky, State Youth Theater named after M. Vakhidov, State Experimental Theater for Young Spectators "Ahorun", State Republican Puppet Theater.


Photos by
Alexander Petrov.