Varvara Popova

Varvara Alexandrovna Popova was born on 17 December 1899. She was an outstanding character actress, a student of Evgeniy Vakhtangov. She worked at the Vakhtangov Theatre from 1920 till 1956.Varvara Popova is said to be the most mysterious figure in the Vakhtangov Theatre history. Unsociable, simpleminded and uncommonly gifted she left the stage, or it would be better to say – dissociated herself in her artistic power’s very heyday. Varvara Alexandrovna didn’t accept new theatre leaders and refused to struggle.Popova had no awards and prizes. She used to say: “Being Vakhtangov’s favourite student is beyond all possible honours and awards.”She studied at the Studio with people who later determined style and trends of the Russian theatre development, who indeed became the face of the Russian stage, namely, B. Zakhava, R. Simonov, Ts. Mansurova, E. Alexeeva, I. Tolchanov. With all of them Varvara Popova was on the first name basis, but never boasted of that and never came into conflicts. The only thing she permitted herself to do was to stand up for her favourite partner and friend Boris Zakhava, when intrigues against him started at the theatre. It is this incident that was fatal in her biography.After leaving the theatre Varvara Popova started a new life – she returned to the cinema. We say returned – because she had already had a considerable experience of working at the cinema. She had already acted in films, directed by such masters as Y. Protazanov and L. Obolenskiy, A. Saltykov, A. Rou.Varvara Popova died in 1988.

Mariquita (Comedies of Merimee, 1924)
Grunka (Virineya, 1925)
Marfusha (Badgers, 1927)
Manyushka (Zoyka’s Apartment, 1928)
Luise (Intrigue and Love, 1930)
Sanka (The Intervention, 1933)
Ninka (The Aristocrats, 1935)
Sponger (The Man with a Gun, 1937)
Soubrette (Cyrano de Bergerac, 1942)
Marusya (The Front, 1942)
Valeriya Ivanovna (The First Joys, 1950)
The Unfortunate Misfortune (He who fears difficulties won’t see happiness, 1954)

His appeal, 1925
Kirpichiki (Small bricks), 1925
Incident at the Mill, 1926
Ekh, yablochko…, 1926
The Wife, 1927
Techyot Volga, 1962
The End of the World, 1962
Cottage in the Dunes, 1963
The Large Wick (movie almanac), 1963
The Chairman, 1964
Morozko, 1964
The Distant Countries, 1964
All for You, 1964
Priezzhayte na Baykal, 1965
Twenty Years After, 1965
Time, Forward!, 1965
A Nasty Story, 1966
The Awakening (movie almanac), 1966
The Shot, 1966
Babye tsarstvo (Women’s Kingdom), 1967
Karamazov Brothers, 1968
Director, 1969
Varvara-krasa, dlinnaya kosa, 1969
The Golden Horns, 1972
The Siberian Woman, 1972