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“Poison of the Capital” Played to Live Music

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Every year the “Spirit of Fire” presents a retrospective program of films by great Russian directors and filmmakers. The name of this year’s retrospective protaganist is not well-known to the general public, and how wrong is that: Pyotr Chardynin (1873-1934) was the most popular, prolific and, in contemporary terms, the top-selling director of pre-revolutionary Russian cinema. His name is associated with the transition of cinema from the first experiments to a real industry and art form in our country.
 Like the majority of filmmakers of that time, Pyotr Chardynin multitasked as a director, scriptwriter, cameraman and actor. An actor by training, a student of Alexander Yuzhin and Vladimir Nemirovich-Danchenko, he worked in several theatres. As an actor he made his debut in “The Merchant Kalashnikov’s Song” and “The Russian Wedding of the 16th Century”. His directorial debut was “The Power of Darkness”. One of the most prolific Russian directors of the 1910s, he directed more than 200 films, including “The Dead Souls” (1909), “The Idiot” (1910), “The Queen of Spades” (1910), “In a Lively Spot (1911), “A House in Kolomna”, “Uncle’s Flat”, “The Precipice” (1913), “Chrysanthemums” (1914), “Poison of the Capital” (1916), “Wandering Lights” (1917), “By the Fireplace” (1917), “Be Silent, My Sorrow, Be Silent” (1918), “A Story about Seven Hanged Men” (1920) and others. The most popular actors of the Russian pre-revolutionary cinema – Vitold Polonsky, Ivan Mozzhukhin, Vladimir Maksimov, Osip Runich, Vera Karalli – starred in his films, but films with Vera Kholodnaya were especially successful. The first superstar of the Russian cinema played her best roles in Chardynin’s films.
 On March 4 at 19:00 in the Big Hall of “Yugra-Classic” we will show four films by Pyotr Chardynin in the “silent films with live music” format. The screening will include the best of the surviving films with a live accompaniment by the young musician and winner of film accompaniment contest Filipp Chiltsov.
 Tickets online: https://ugraclassic.ru/tickets/#/event/2470