Alexei Agranovich was removed from the post of artistic director of the Gogol Center, director Alexei Kabeshev will also leave the theater, TASS reports with reference to the Moscow Department of Culture.
The department also announced the appointment of Anton Yakovlev as the head of the Gogol Moscow Drama Theater, and Alexander Bocharnikov as director.
"Artistic Director of the Moscow Drama Theatre. N.V. Gogol, Anton Yakovlev was appointed - theater and film director, winner of the Moscow Prize in the field of literature and art, the Golden Knight and Theater Star awards.
In two more institutions, they also decided to change the leadership: in the "School of the Modern Play" Dmitry Astrakhan was appointed head, in "Sovremennik" the artistic council will be responsible for "creative activity" instead of Viktor Ryzhakov.
The founder of the Gogol Center, Kirill Serebrennikov, commented on the information about the removal of the leadership in his Telegram channel.
"Yes. Gogol Center is closed. All. The last performance will be the performance “I am not participating in the war” based on the poetry of Yuri Levitansky.” And the last premiere of the theater was the poetic performance "Take care of your faces" based on the poetry of Andrei Voznesensky. Then at the Taganka Theater the performance was held three times and was immediately closed by the authorities. Now they have decided to close the theatre. For position. For honesty. For an attempt at freedom. For the fact that all the months that the war has been going on, the actors in the theater, protesting against the war, do not bow, ending each performance with the image of a dove of peace. For not removing my performances from the repertoire. For being decent people. The titles of the performances - "I DO NOT PARTICIPATE IN THE WAR" and "PROTECT YOUR FACES" - are messages to you, the audience, this is a request from all of us, the Gogol Center team, to remain human.
Yes. They are closing the live theater. With constant crowds. With a wonderful audience. With a unique repertoire. Theater of world renown. Theater for the people. They can do it by the right of the founder. But from the point of view of art, this is not just sabotage - it is murder. Another common kill. So please remember. DEUS CONSERVAT OMNIA ( God preserves everything )."
Serebrennikov took over the Gogol Moscow Drama Theater in 2012 and announced plans to turn it into the Gogol Center. In June 2020, he was sentenced to three years of probation in the Seventh Studio case. According to investigators, the defendants in the case stole 128 million rubles from the budget allocated for the Platforma project. In February 2021, the artistic director confirmed that he was leaving his post.
Earlier in June, the Yeltsin Center removed a statement about the war in Ukraine at the request of the security forces. On the page where the statement was previously, when you navigate , a “404 error” appears. On February 25, a day after the start of the war in Ukraine, the following anti-war statement was published on the website:
“On February 24, 2022, our country decided to conduct a special military operation in Ukraine. In 1991, Russia and Ukraine jointly made the choice of their fate - abandoning the legacy of the USSR, they began the difficult path to the community of civilized countries, to democracy and the market. After 30 years, Russia and Ukraine found themselves on opposite sides of the front line. This is an unthinkable disaster for both countries and their peoples. Realizing the full measure of responsibility that lies with us as citizens of the stronger side of the fratricidal conflict, we call for an immediate halt to hostilities.”