Dmitry Lohov

Artistic director of Archangelsk Puppet Theatre, Honored Arts Professional of the Russian Federation, winner of the Russian National Theatre Award THE GOLDEN MASK, recipient of the Order of Friendship.

Dmitry Lokhov’s creative biography is inseparably tied to Archangelsk Regional Puppet Theatre, where he started working in 1968, in 1985 became its principal director, and in 1992 – its artistic director. During these years, Lokhov practically formed his theatre, which gained him the recent Fyodor Volkov award of the Government of the Russian Federation: For the creation of Archangelsk Puppet Theatre as an institution of all-Russian and international cultural importance. The director staged about fifty productions, the most famous of which – Nativity Scene and Khamlet, Danish Prince – became the winners of the Russian National Theatre Award THE GOLDEN MASK. Dmitry Lokhov is the author of the idea and one of the organizers of the International Festival of chamber productions of puppet theatres Ulitka [Snail].
The principal character of Khamlet used to say: “The world is not theatre, but the fairground booth, where puppets act.” Meyerhold argued that the fairground booth is the quintessence of theatre art: “The fairground booth is eternal. Its characters never die. They only change faces and adopt a new form.” The fairground booth, masks, ludic element – these are Dmitry Lokhov’s favorite creative motifs.

The principal productions:

Nativity Scene — 1992, Archangelsk Puppet Theatre

Khamlet, Danish Prince — 2002, Archangelsk Puppet Theatre

An Umbrella for the Princess — 1996, Theatre of Marionettes named after E.S.Demmeni

Mashenka and the Bear — 2001, Archangelsk Puppet Theatre

Love for the Three Oranges — 2007, Theatre of Marionettes named after E.S.Demmeni

The Puppet Fairground Booth “Don Giovanni in Venice” — 2009, Archangelsk Puppet Theatre

The Seagull — 2005, Archangelsk Puppet Theatre

The Magic Fairytales of a Parrot — 2007, Archangelsk Puppet Theatre

St. Petersburg Dreams — 2012, Archangelsk Puppet Theatre

About the Scary Dragon and the Brave Shoemaker, the beautiful Princess and the king Nail — 1990, Archangelsk Puppet Theatre

“The ideal theatre is ensemble theatre, where living creativity is possible. Meeting bureaucrats and members of parliament, I repeat the same thing: ‘Theatre is a collective artist or a collective of artists, it is a special institution. The more talented the artist is, the more difficult his or her character is (not necessarily, but often). Everyone has his or her own ambitions, so it is terribly hard to create an ensemble.” The workshops should understand: if a certain detail needs to be replaced, it should be replaced; if everything should be redone, it should be redone. Not because something was bad, but because the director and the designer have come up with better ideas. It is not a problem that time and materials have been wasted. We should make sure that the creative process takes place in the atmosphere which allows that. Of course, this is hard to achieve, but – with the team of people we have gathered – we often manage to achieve that.”
Natalia Zaitseva and Tatiana Kuzovchikova, "Teatr chudes" [Theatre of Miracles]
“For many years I have been thinking: the painful state of the world – how to overcome it? Nothing can help to overcome it. However, communication itself, theatre game itself, taking place here and now – these things give us a chance to overcome. Communication, emerging in the process of collective creation between actors on stage, between theatre and audience – I have always been interested in that and rescued by that. This is still true today.”
Svetlana Semyonova, "Nastroyeniye" [Mood]
Mass Media Feedback:

“In Ancient Rome they decided to make parodies of myths, which had become the plots of tragedies in Ancient Greek theatre – this genre received the title ‘para-tragedy’. Gods and kings behaved in para-tragedies almost like satyrs. Showing the legendary characters in the fairground booth, Dmitry Lokhov, as a matter of fact, conducts a similar operation with celebrated plays. There is something in them that we, despite thousands of stage versions, did not know about. The director does not forget about ‘the beard’ of theatre tradition and intentionally travesties it, boldly mixing seemingly different style trends and stage stories. As a result, a genuinely Rabelaisian unity emerges – the unity of the fairground booth, where there is a place for cheeky jokes and theatre references.”

Yulia Kleiman

"St. Petersburg Theatre Journal"

“Khamlet, Danish Prince is not Shakespeare. This is not tragedy, but farce. Khamlet, invented by Dmitry Lokhov, goes beyond the Danish prince we all know. Is all the world a stage? No, it is the fairground booth, which means that glove puppets or, as they are also known, petrushkas [the Russian version of Punch] perform – which is incredibly important for this production. Why was the tragedy put into the fairground booth? Is modern theatre capable only of farcical emotions?”

Alexei Goncharenko

Toronto Slavic Quarterly