Andrey Mironov (1941 - 1987)
Andrei Mironov was born in 1941, fatal for the country, into a family of pop artists Alexander Menaker and Maria Mironova. Since childhood, he lived in a theatrical environment and decided on his future profession at school. At the end of the 1940s, the so-called "struggle against cosmopolitanism" began in the USSR, during which representatives of the creative intelligentsia with Jewish surnames could lose not only their profession, but also freedom. According to the calculations of the Soviet writer Ilya Ehrenburg, from the beginning of the campaign until 1953, 217 writers, 108 actors, 87 artists, 19 musicians were arrested in the USSR - 431 people in total. Anti-Semitic sentiments led Andrei's parents to the idea of changing their son's surname, since the real one - Menaker - could prevent the future actor from taking place in the profession. Andrei went to the third grade with his mother. Under it, he became famous.
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Zinovy Gerdt (1916 - 1996)
The real name of Zinovy Gerdt is Zalman Khrapinovich. Acting abilities showed in him as a child. He took an active part in school amateur performances, wrote poetry in Russian and Yiddish. Arriving in Moscow to his brother at the age of 16, he entered a factory school and played in the theater, combining creativity with work in the Moscow metro. Seven years later, when Zalman Khrapinovich was already a sought-after artist and entered the troupe of the Moscow State Theater Studio, he decided to take a pseudonym because of the dissonance of his own surname. According to one version, the choice was associated with the name of the ballerina Elizaveta Gerdt, according to another, the actor's family had relatives with the last name Gerd, and the artist only added a "t" at the end for sound. Under a new pseudonym, he performed all his life, and when the war began, he went to the front as a volunteer.
Innokenty Smoktunovsky (1925 - 1994)
Innokenty Smoktunovsky was the second child in a family of six, and as a child he and his brother were given to an aunt to be raised - mother and father could not feed everyone. Smoktunovsky grew up as a mischievous, but at the same time capable child. From lessons, he ran to the theater, where he played in the crowd. Innocent did not finish school. Parents wanted to send him to medical assistant courses, but Smoktunovsky once again showed rebellion - he began to study at a technical school as a projectionist. Then there was the war, the Kursk Bulge, German captivity, escape, a partisan detachment. After the war, the future actor found himself in a dangerous situation. There were many repressed in his family, he himself was in captivity and was already under surveillance in the security forces. Not only a future career could be threatened, but also freedom. Then he decided to change his surname, and from Smoktunovich became Smoktunovsky.
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Mark Bernes (1911 - 1969)
For Menachem Neumann, acting was a life-changing opportunity. He grew up in the family of a poor Jewish junk dealer, his mother was a housewife. Parents wanted Menachem to become an accountant, but he disobeyed them and wanted to connect his life with acting. Having moved to Moscow from Kharkov, the 16-year-old artist signed up as an extra in several theaters. At the same time, he decided to choose a pseudonym for himself. In Hebrew, "bar" means "son", "nes" is translated as "miracle." Subsequently, the "a" in the first syllable was replaced by "e". Under his new name, Mark Bernes became an all-Union famous actor.
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Leonid Utesov (1895 - 1982)
Lazar Weisbein was born in Odessa in 1895. From a young age he took part in amateur performances, played in the orchestra, performed with gymnastic numbers in the circus. The artist took a pseudonym in 1911 at the request of the head of the troupe, artist Skavronsky. According to the master, the surname Weisbein was not suitable for a young comedian. Lazarus chose exclusively words related to the heights. All derivatives from mountains - Gorin, Gorov, etc. - were busy. From the pseudonym "Hills" pulled, as the artist later recalled, something grave. Finally, the "sublime" alias was chosen. Leonid Utesov achieved great heights in creativity, became the People's Artist of the USSR and the RSFSR, created the first jazz orchestra in the country and became famous for his roles in films.
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Vera Alentova (born 1941)
Actress Vera Alentova, who became famous after the movie "Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears" (1979), could have become famous under a different name - Bykova. Vera's father, Valentin Mikhailovich Bykov, served in the theater; on duty, he had to travel with his family throughout the Union. In January 1946, at the age of 29, he died suddenly. Vera was in her fourth year. In 1961 Alentova entered the Moscow Art Theater School, in her second year she married director Vladimir Menshov. In 1969, the couple had a daughter, Julia. In the registry office, when the actress was filling out the documents for her daughter, she found out that she had the right to change the surname in the passport to any one. Vera chose her mother's maiden name. The actress liked that "Alenthia" is translated from Greek as "truth", and this word is often found in the Bible.
Georgy Millyar (1903 - 1993)
In 1902, a son, George, was born into the family of the French bridge engineer Franz de Mille and the daughter of the Irkutsk gold miner Elizaveta Zhuravleva. The child lost his father early, but lived in luxury. He had foreign tutors, and from childhood he spoke several languages. Even before the First World War, Elizabeth de Mille and her son moved from Moscow to Gelendzhik, but this did not save the family from further problems. In the revolution, de Millers lost everything. Of the property, only one room remained in a communal apartment. At that time, it was decided to change the surname - it was unsafe to demonstrate your aristocratic origin. Georgy Millyar became the master of buffoonery, the most recognizable Koschei and the brightest Baba Yaga of world cinema.
Semyon Farada (1933 - 2009)
Semyon Ferdman, the future Farad, was born in 1933 into a Jewish family. He became interested in theater at school, but his parents forbade him to enter a theater university. Semyon did not go to the military academy either, but graduated from the Bauman Institute, becoming an engineer. After the army and completing his studies, Semyon Ferdman worked for seven years in his specialty and combined work with his favorite hobby - he performed in the theater and played in the cinema. In 1972, when the film “Forward, Guards!” Was supposed to be released on “Tajikfilm”, the actor was offered to change his surname in the credits: “Come up with some charade!”. This is how Farada appeared. Under this name, the actor became known, over time, he redid the documents and formalized the pseudonym.
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Svetlana Toma (b. 1947)
The real name of Svetlana Toma is Fomicheva. The actress decided to take a sonorous pseudonym during the filming of the film that made her popularly beloved - "Tabor Goes to Heaven" (1975). In the cinema, Svetlana turned out to be by chance - director Emil Loteanu saw a girl at a bus stop and offered to star in his film. At that time, Svetlana was studying to be a lawyer, she did not even dream of a film career. Lotyanu did not accept the refusal, and Fomicheva went to meet him. Painting "Red Glades" (1966) was the first in her career. The film that made Tom "the main gypsy of the USSR" was the tenth.
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Faina Ranevskaya (1896 - 1984)
At the age of 14, Fanny Feldman, a girl from a Jewish family living in Taganrog, told her parents that she would be an actress. Father and mother did not support their daughter's hobbies, but did not object when Fanny enrolled in a theater studio. At the age of 21 she moved to Moscow and continued her acting career, wandering around Russia as part of troupes. Once in Kerch, after receiving a money order from her parents, the girl was leaving the cash register and the money she was carrying was blown away by the wind. The actress did not run for the bills, she just noticed to the companion that they were flying beautifully. The young actor, accompanying Fanny, lost his tongue: “Ranevskaya! Only she could have said that!”Recalling one of the heroines of the play“The Cherry Orchard”. Chekhov was one of the actress's favorite writers, and soon the real name in the programs and credits was replaced by a pseudonym.
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