“My task is to create the right environment. In "Workshop" we succeed to some extent, directors, artists, playwrights are drawn to us, because here there is a dialogue, there is no diktat. Talented actors try themselves in directing … You just need to provide this opportunity, include their courage, but you also need to include your own courage. And responsibility”, - exactly two years ago Dmitry Brusnikin answered in an interview like this when asked whether he feels like a builder of a new theater. Then Brusnikin's Workshop became a resident of the Praktika Theater. Two years later, Brusnikin was appointed artistic director. The appointment order was officially signed on August 7. Two days later, on August 9, Dmitry Vladimirovich was gone. The helpless phrase "impossible to believe" is more accurate than ever.
Dmitry Brusnikin was born into a military family on November 17, 1957 in Potsdam. He graduated from school in Klin and in 1973 entered the Moscow Institute of Electronic Technology. And in 1975, two years after admission, Brusnikin began to play on the stage of the National Theater. In 1977 he went on an academic leave and got a job as a stage machinist at the Theater-Studio of a film actor.
The very next year he entered three universities at once: "Pike", "Sliver" and the Moscow Art Theater School. I chose the latter - the great Oleg Efremov was taking the course there.
Brusnikin became one of his favorite students. Marina Brusnikina studied in the same course, whose maiden name is now remembered by few: Dmitry and Marina got married while still students, in 1979.
Immediately after receiving his diploma, Brusnikin was taken into the troupe of the Moscow Art Theater, and at about the same time, such an important talent for the future Russian theater began to develop - he began to teach. First as an assistant. Brusnikin recruited his first independent course together with Roman Kozak. Daria Moroz, Alexandra Ursulyak, Sergey Lazarev, Yuri Kvyatkovsky are their graduates.
Students and graduates of Brusnikin's workshop at the Moscow Art Theater School have always been called "Brusnikinites" by the theater world. They became a real theatrical brand five years ago, when they started talking about students, graduates of 2015, not only in theatrical circles, but also far beyond their borders. And the master continued to smile with a warm smile, familiar to everyone who ever met him in the corridors of theaters. He did not miss the rehearsals and premieres of his students and graduates, he was always ready to help, prompt, direct, and also modestly stand in line with the audience or give up his place. A successful actor, Brusnikin rejoiced at the success of others, it seems, more than his own.
All who are able, capable of both singing and dancing, remain organic in classical theater, and in immersive productions, and in cinema. It seemed that the last five years "Brusnikinites" were literally everywhere. And if for most of the country Dmitry Brusnikin was a film actor, then for the entire theatrical community - a Master. A revolutionary in theatrical pedagogy: it was his students who were the first to study verbatim, it was they who took dictaphones to the streets of Moscow, and then released, just in Praktik, the play This is also me, which became their hallmark. In the finale of this performance, the artists sing Tsoi's "Changes" in Russian sign language - this is how the production anticipated and gave a countdown to these very changes. How you can teach actors. Whom to invite to their course. What to release. "Cavalry", "Demons" - these are all formally student performances, which all of Moscow was bursting with.
1 of 7 Scene from the play “This is also me” © praktikatheatre.ru © praktikatheatre.ru © praktikatheatre.ru © praktikatheatre.ru © praktikatheatre.ru © praktikatheatre.ru © praktikatheatre.ru
At the same time, Brusnikin has always remained a playing coach. He intensively acted in films - only last year was Andrei Silvestrov's "Ice-hole" released, many remember "Turkish March" or "Citizen-Chief" - however, he remained for many a prince from the "Petersburg secrets". Noble nobility is what made this tall man even higher.
Shot from the movie "Ice-hole" © kinopoisk.ru
On the stage of the Moscow Art Theater, and then - the Moscow Art Theater. Chekhov Dmitry Brusnikin first played classical heroes - Bazarov, Alexey Turbin, Ivanov, Astrov and Chatsky in the performances of Oleg Efremov, and then staged Chekhov's Platonov and played in it himself …
In recent years, he lived up to what he taught his students and was not afraid to experiment. His role as Hector Black, a farmer who tragically lost his daughter and wrote a letter to her murderer in prison, is the embodiment of nobility and forgiving. Brusnikin was balancing on the thinnest line: he did not go into the sermon and every second remained authentic in this documentary performance by Kazimir Liske.
1 of 3 Scene from the play Black & Simpson © praktikatheatre.ru © praktikatheatre.ru © praktikatheatre.ru
Today many have written that Brusnikin was the successor of the Moscow Art Theater tradition. More than once he recalled the order of his master Efremov: “The main thing is, do not forget that you are people,” and he strictly followed it. He got along with people surprisingly quickly - he suddenly began to hug at a meeting and share plans. Never been a star. He waited with everyone, if it was necessary to wait, together with everyone he persisted, if persistence was required. He was not accommodating and compromise in artistic matters, but he always knew how to agree in a human way. “Brusnikin taught the actress to throw a backpack throughout the rehearsal,” they answered the question “how are you?” producers of one of the performances. Meticulousness, attentiveness and thoroughness are all about him, a big man in every sense.
The departure of Dmitry Brusnikin after the departure of his colleagues and peers, founders of Teatr.doc, playwrights and directors Elena Gremina and Mikhail Ugarov, looks like some kind of eerie and sinister challenge to their students. All three were building a new theater. The theater is attentive to people. All three still have students. “Next ourselves” - wrote yesterday on Facebook Yuri Kvyatkovsky, director, teacher, one of the creators of the world's first hip-hopper “Cops on Fire”, one of the “early” Brusnikinites. There is a hope - "Brusnikinites" will cope. After all, the Master taught independence.>