N. Sukonkina Theatre Company and Theatre Union of Russia, Moscow
Presented in the frame of Russian Case 2020
Director: Boris Konstantinov
Set designer: Viktor Antonov
Boris Konstantinov, a major Russian director-puppeteer, in collaboration with scenographer Viktor Antonov, created a play dedicated to Edith Piaf, staged in a cabaret setting, where the audience takes on the role of Cafe Gerny’s patrons, seated at the tables. The play, focused on Piaf’s story, her songs, her men (starting with her father), her victories and her catastrophes is acted out by young charismatic actors as clownery, meshed with puppet and object theatre. Starring the marvellous Regina Habibullina, petite, curly haired, with round eyebrows painted high. She actually resembles Piaf and operates puppet Piafs of different sizes. All other roles are played by five men wearing dashing berets and bird-beaked noses. This is how the story becomes avian, since Piaf is the “Little Sparrow”.

Dina Goder

The play “Silence. Dedication to Edith Piaf” is an excellent occasion to finally part with the illusion that the puppet theater is intended only for children, and be surprised at its potential. The play about Edith Piaf is narrated from death to birth of the singer. This is an attempt to hear a unique voice during the silence and show a short life with so many adventures that would be enough for several people.
The plot sequentially glides over the singer’s biography: love is followed by loss, triumph – by disaster. A kaleidoscope of events and heroes which are not easy to be followed make your head spin.

Vash Dosug Magazine

After the performance, it is so deafeningly quiet on the street that it takes a long time to get thoughts together to say something.
The performance is mystical. It’s as if you are in the past, in a fairy tale, in another world, and it drawing you in. The feeling is enhanced by the space of the Boyars Chambers. Edith Piaf’s suffering, her life’s tragedies, pain, and sometimes hopelessness are keenly felt. And at the same time, lightness is felt in combination with her strength and ability to live against all odds.
Probably, all this can be conveyed only by means of a puppet theater, music, dance, pantomime, words would be superfluous.

Afisha Magazine

By means of the puppet theater, music, dance and pantomime, the performance will tell the story of the life and death of the famous French singer Edith Piaf.
Five men are five chords of Edith's life. In the space of the French street and the chamber atmosphere of the Zhernis cabaret, the spectators will become direct participants in overcoming the soundless vacuum. They will see, hear and feel the very silence which is worse than death for the singer.


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