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Roman Vinderman - Russian Theater Director

This website is dedicated to the life and artistic legacy of Roman Vinderman
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Roman Vinderman - Russian Theater Director
Roman Vinderman was born in Odessa in 1945. While still at school he began working at a local theater as an extra actor. After graduating from school he went to St. Petersburg (then Leningrad) and entered the State Theater Academy, now known as the St. Petersburg Academy for Theater and Cinematography.

His class at the department of Puppetry was headed by professor Korolev. 5 years later several of his friends and Roman entered into the arena of Russian (Soviet) theater scene. In the 1970s the system of "raspredelenie" was practiced. All young professionals graduating from state universities were directed to go to a specific city and begin working at a specific organization. Graduated Korolev's students went to cities distant from the center of the country, and later became very influential art figures in Russian puppetry. Their work geography was later called “Ural’skaya Zona” – which refers to geographic location in the Urals (Ural Mountains separate central part of Russia from the rest) and beyond where many new artistic ideas were born. Roman went to Sverdlovsk (now Ekaterinburg) and began his directing career.

From 1974 to 1982 he worked at Sverdlovsk State Repertory Puppet Theater but became unpopular with the communist party for his desire to make Puppet Theater interesting not only for children but for adults as well. Theater's show selection under his artistic direction geared too much towards adult repertoire which was not appreciated by the local department of ministry of culture. Vinderman was criticized and was called to "the carpet" (ministry of culture) where he was told "Puppet Theater has to be for children and it is the sole purpose of that theater."

Vinderman made a decision to leave Sverdlovsk and move to Tomsk, Siberia where a puppet theater was in need of artistic director (to say the least, there were only 3 actors at the theater when Vinderman came to Tomsk). Roman convinced several recent graduates from Sverdlovsk Theater Academy where he was teaching in the 1970s to come with him to Siberia. A new theater was born. They called it "Skomoroh".

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