#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. The construction was constantly forced, but constantly it was not in time. At first, the drama theatre opening was planned for the golden Norilsk Mining and Metallurgical Combine anniversary in 1985, then on November 7, 1986.
The last to appear were metal letters on the facade: 56 huge letters were cast and carved out by Norilsk machine builders. The building, designed for 600 seats, turned out to be very elegant: marble cladding, double floors, pylons.
The first performance was staged in January 1987, the first spectators were builders and architects. For that premiere, the new director Anatoly Koshelev ordered the play to Norilsk playwrighter Victor Levashov. This is how the play Special Purpose was born. It seemed to be about the Norilsk builders heroism. But the first builders were from Norillag. In 1987, the Norilsk theater for the first time brought prisoners onto the stage.
This is how Victor Levashov recalled it:
“The last rehearsals of Special Purpose took place in a terrible confusion. The usual pre-premiere turmoil was intensified by the builders. As usual, they did not meet the deadline and completed the flaws in an emergency mode. The role of Zavenyagin was played by a wonderful young actor Yury Tsurilo. Once the city executive committee chairman Yury Smolov came to the theater to drive the builders. He appeared in the hall with an extremely puzzled look: “There’s…some person. He seemes to be Zavenyagin” – “This is Zavenyagin indeed!” – Koshelev and I shouted in chorus. And after that we realised: the performance will be a success”.
In the last issue of the History Spot photo project, we told about the oldest Norilsk newspaper.
Text: Svetlana Samohina, Photo: Nornickel Polar Division archive