Director, founder of the Gogol Center Kirill Serebrennikov said in an interview with Yuri Dud that he had never voted for Vladimir Putin:
“An employee of the special services cannot be the head of the country. These people do not have the idea of human development, they have an idea: a person can be bought, recruited, killed. But to develop, invest money in him, teach him… I had no illusions, I never voted for this president.”
He admitted that he might never return to Russia:
“I don’t have good scripts for what can happen there. All this can drag on for a very long time, unfortunately. I really want to encourage myself, you, the audience. But I'm afraid it's just not possible, it could go on indefinitely."
In an interview, the director also said that billionaire Roman Abramovich paid a fine of 129 million rubles in the Seventh Studio case, since Serebrennikov himself did not have that kind of money:
“It’s not him personally, but some people, structures close to him, because, of course, I don’t have that kind of money, I never had, and probably never will.”
To the final question of Yuri Dud about what strength is, Serebrennikov cited the example of the municipal deputy of the Krasnoselsky district Alexei Gorinov, who was sentenced to seven years in a penal colony under an article about the spread of "fakes" about the actions of the Armed Forces.
“Aleksey Gorinov has strength, who was imprisoned for seven years for calling war a war. This is a strong person. There is power in what he said and with what courage he meets this verdict.
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. On June 20, he commented on the information about the removal of management and the closure of the Gogol Center:
“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) ."