Artists, writers and musicians read poetry without leaving their apartments, or rather balconies. Is this how the Balkon theater festival was intended? Yes and no. He (or, more precisely, its creators represented by Alexandra Filippenko, Petr Novikov and Vladimir Pilosyan) really intended to turn balconies into real theatrical scenes, which, as expected, are directed by attentive spectators. It was only assumed that these views would be real, not shared with the artists by the screen of computers and phones. However, well-known events happened, the words “social distance”, “self-isolation” and “Zoom” firmly settled in our vocabulary, and the festival moved online. The essence, however, remains the same. Going out onto balconies, artists, writers and musicians read poems,prose and poetry ranging from Lermontov to the works of Boris Ryzhiy. But they temporarily peer not into our faces, but into the attentive, but slightly indifferent lens of an intermediary quadrocopter. We asked the festival participants to tell how they spend their time at home, what they miss and what they come up with, and Balkon co-founder Alexander Filippenko - to recall how the “quarantine” shooting of the project went.
Pavel Derevyanko - about sports and the opportunity to finally spend time with his family
New habits have been developed in quarantine: exercise every day and in the last weeks - two workouts a day. I've always played sports, but now I hit it more than ever. Otherwise, there is nothing to surprise, we spend time, like everyone else - at home, or rather, in the country. The main difference between our family is that there are a lot of us: ten people, five of them are children, so, as you understand, there is no need to get bored. Children brighten up the quarantine, and it is also brightened by the expectation of their favorite work, postponed for several months, the good mood that we create for each other, and films, of course. My attitude to the concept of home has changed - I am very used to being at home with my family. Before quarantine, I spent much less time here, all the time in the city … But I could not visit my children, my wife every day. Now we are constantly together and realizedthat everyday life does not change our relationship in any way. Not only did I not lose, having changed my habit of loneliness for the company of my family, but I gained very, very much. During these months we got so used to each other that now we do not understand how it could be different, but, of course, at the same time I really miss my friends and work.
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We constantly listen to music - starting with morning exercises and all day. During the quarantine, he even discovered several new radio stations. From the TV series I really liked the "Miracle Workers", and from the films we watch the classics - at the beginning of the quarantine I specially downloaded several terabytes of various favorite films - fiction, documentary, children's. So we watch a movie every evening with the whole (or almost all) of our large family.
Maxim Vitorgan - about the absence of "itching of constant socialization"
Something remotely reminiscent of rehearsals and "theatrical processes" takes place. But it is more like just trying to throw out the excess of creative energy, not exhausted by communication with children, games and sports. I have always appreciated the house very much, treasured the space in which I spend my time. It is very important to me, and I feel the need to stay there alone. I am not bored with myself, and I do not experience the itch of constant socialization. I do not need to feel the reaction of the world to me - even without this I feel that I am. I miss going to the theater and exhibitions. I like it. And if cinema, with some reservations, can still be replaced by home viewing, often still to the detriment of the spectacle, then with theaters and painting this does not work at all.
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Alexander Filippenko - about jazz and how to become a blogger
In quarantine, I became a young 75-year-old blogger. My wife ordered a tripod with light and a buttonhole (my friends suggested what exactly was needed), I started an instagram, so I write down poetry and prose at the dacha. Here I wrote down Levitansky for you (for the RBC Style project “We are at home today”), spend online with theaters, learn a new program and even take part in filming in quarantine, but with all the precautions. At any time, you can develop, or you can panic - it all depends on the inner mood. And Solzhenitsyn's attitude to the situation is best formulated: "While you can still breathe after the rain under the apple tree, you can still live!"
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My quarantine brightens up the fact that I am constantly busy, constantly working - learning something, reading, looking for new material. Of course, we also watch movies and TV shows, with great pleasure the performances that theaters put out. Theater through a computer is a completely different thing, but personally, watching it not only doesn’t discourage me from going to the play, but on the contrary, after watching it online, I even more want to see it live. So, first of all, there is not enough theater - not only work in it, but also the opportunity to go. The Zhenovach Theater Art Studio has only recently restored the play "A Weary Family" - this is a real masterpiece. We, of course, watched it when it first came out (in 2006 - RBC Style), and now, after the break, we really wanted to see it again. My daughter managed to go, but my wife and I did not. Gathered in April … Well, for now:Listen to jazz "in any incomprehensible situation". So I choose jazz from music now. And for me any situation will be better done by the book on which I am going to play the play. Now it is "Return to Ostrog" by Sasha Filipenko.
Sasha Filipenko - about travel as a university of life
It’s a little easier for writers to quarantine - I’ve spent a lot of time at home before, so my day hasn’t changed, except that I don’t take my son to school in the morning and I don’t pick him up from there, and I don’t play football in the evening. It is emotionally difficult because now my book "The Red Cross" was published in German and I had to go on a tour of Austria, Germany, Switzerland, where a lot of events, including the Leipzig Book Exhibition, failed. In Germany, the "Red Cross" immediately hit the top of the bestsellers, and if I were there, I could tell more about the book to the German reader. It is a pity that everything fell through at its peak.
I cannot say that quarantine became a reason for self-development, it may be immodest to say that, but I have always tried to deal with it … Anxiety appears, rather, because no one understands when all this will end. I am used to making plans, in this sense I am a very “German person” (after all, it is customary to think that Germans always make plans), it is important for me to understand what will happen tomorrow, what will happen in a week … It is important for me to structure my life in the same way as I structure my novels. Now I can do something work-related, I can write, but I don't understand when there will be meetings with readers again, I cannot make plans with my European publishers.
This is not to say that something special brightens up my quarantine, because nothing new has appeared in my life: I still read, spend a lot of time with my son, we also hack into a console, listen to audio performances, music. Life brightens up everything the same as before. But travel has always been an important part of it for me, and I believe that for my son they are the most important university, while traveling he learns the world. Now this beauty - the beauty of new discoveries, new countries - does not exist, but I hope that very soon it will return. And now, most of all, there is a lack of understanding of what you can take and fly somewhere, that there can be a meeting with readers in Zurich, and the next day in Berlin. When traveling, you get to know new people, get acquainted with new literary houses - this is not enough. Not enough football with friends several times a week and of coursethere is not enough football in the stadium. Usually you can play in a country and go after or before playing a great football match.
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I have a lot of playlists that I collect for each book. When I write for rhythm, I listen to a lot of music. My readers already know that when a new playlist appears, it means that I have taken up something, it means that I am writing a new book. Now I listen to Arvo Pärt a lot, which is what I wish everyone.
Julia Vysotskaya - about carelessness that we did not notice
Life is cooler than any novel, I could never even imagine that everything that happens today can happen for real, and not in a movie. You can perceive this situation in different ways, but we still cannot change it. Probably, everyone has moments when panic seizes, when it becomes so sad that you cannot sleep. And you still have to try to survive all this. For me, one of the ways is to devote some time to silence, peace, for example, just sit, look at the sky, at the trees, even from the window, and now everything has become a little better.
It is clear that we do not have the freedom of movement and variety of communication that we are used to. I never thought that I would miss my work so much: I do not have enough rehearsals, adrenaline before the performance, I do not have enough spectators and exchange of energy with them. But now is the time to experiment, try something new, develop your abilities, improve yourself, take lessons. I study French, and with the students of Andrei Sergeevich Konchalovsky from GITIS, we study theater online, and this is really interesting, because an artist must be able to analyze roles, circumstances, and everything that happens on stage. In general, I enjoy spending time at home with my loved ones. Surprisingly, I don't think I've ever cooked that much for them before. Going through my books, photographs and letters, scripts,which I worked on, and the next step is also the clothes - you need to understand what it is time to get rid of, and what, I hope, it will soon be possible to walk.
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The feeling of being at home is completely different. We are responsible people, everything is treated with quartz, hand disinfectants are everywhere. And although I really like the feeling of the food, now I cook with gloves - now it's a necessity. I would like to urge everyone to observe possible precautions and try to take care of each other. We protect each other.
It's amazing how carelessly we recently lived - we took for granted the opportunity to travel, communicate with friends, do what we wanted, and at the same time not feel any danger and not limit ourselves in anything. The most pleasant thing for me is to remember my trips, my favorite places and dream that someday I will definitely find myself there again. I look forward to the moment when it will be possible to return to a normal, active phase of life - to go outside in a sundress or shorts, bask in the sun, look at the ducks in the pond … I really hope that we are already moving in this direction.
I have a huge list of books that I heard about in some interview or read in a review, and now I manage to order something on the sly, I read something online. I can advise Erdman's "Suicide", it seems to me that this is a brilliant thing, no worse than Ilf and Petrov - the same energy, the same beautiful, ringing syllable, humor, incredible turns of speech … As for the films, I watched the TV series Once at night”- it's not new, but very well done, we liked the scientific and educational programs at the BBC - about real superfoods, about how much we need physical exercise. I watch French and Italian black-and-white classics, with pleasure I revisited "Ryaba Chicken" - Churikova plays just amazing. My son recommended the film "Sweet Boy" - look, it made a really strong impression on me.
Alexandra Filippenko - about the Balkon festival, showers and "quarantine" experiments
Is the theater festival quarantined? If we succeeded, I'm afraid to imagine what will happen when we can all work as usual. Initially, of course, we planned a traditional theater festival, it was postponed due to the pandemic, but we did not give up and reformatted everything from offline to online in two months.
First of all, I am grateful to the artists who embarked on this adventure: put on sterilized buttonholes on their own, play not on the usual camera, but on a flying and noisy quadrocopter, and even from the balcony of their house or summer cottage. Shooting in nature is always unpredictable, and on balconies, and even in the current conditions, it's just a quest. We filmed Maxim Vitorgan with the favor of the higher powers - we moved the time several times because of the strong wind, and filmed in a skyscraper on Barrikadnaya on the 15th floor. The wind died down, they took it off, but the quadrocopter did not have time to land - the sky in a second was covered with black clouds and it poured such a rain that it was hard to believe. Well, since we were filming with a view of the Patriarch's Ponds, I wanted to quote Bulgakov: "The darkness that came from the Mediterranean covered the city hated by the procurator."
Sasha Filipenko's shooting in St. Petersburg turned out to be extreme. Sasha had to go out onto the dilapidated balcony of his apartment, where usually no one, of course, goes out. By the way, one more feature of quarantine filming: sometimes you have to involve the whole family. Sasha's son Roma became the sound engineer, without whom we would not have succeeded. Anatoly Bely also had a “family” shooting: his adorable daughter Vika was playing the harp in the next window, the fearless son Maxim showed us the best shooting points (of course, from the roof of the next house, wherever he knew how to get through), and all this helped to organize "from the inside" of the house Anatoly's wife - Inna. We have a lot of stories about filming in quarantine, but I want to believe that the second act of our Balkon festival will happen soon, when we will all be able to watch the "balcony" readings of our favorite artists live.
Heroes of RBC Style - about the changes during self-isolation.