Based on stories by the Russian classic writer, film director and scriptwriter Vassili Shukshin, the production by Alvis Hermanis portrays people living in isolated Siberian villages and trying to find their identity in the contemporary world. These are stories about people who live in the back of beyond, having little contact with the rest of the society, and who often ponder about life and death, destiny and chance, tradition and keeping up with modern times. “Stories of Shukshin” is packed with nostalgia, warm humour and irony, but, similarly to life itself, it also includes a certain amount of tragedy.
During the rehearsals Alvis Hermanis and his cast visited the Altai region where Shukshin came from, in order to get acquainted with the prototypes of the characters created by the writer. As a result, we can see lifelike portraits of Siberian villagers on the stage. Although the actors portray inhabitants of a small Russian village, they remain modern urbanites. Thus, the production brings together two different words that discover they have a lot in common.
"I realized that I need to choose a typically Russian material that would enable me to learn something new about the humankind. I remembered films by Shukshin that I had seen as a child. I read his stories and I was amazed how simple and wise they were.”
Awards for Best Large Scale Production, Best Costume Design and Best Actor (Yevgeny Mironov) at the Golden Mask Festival 2010 in Russia