On 26 February 2019, the well-known theatre expert, DSc in art history, Professor, Department Head of the St Petersburg State Academy of Theatrical Arts, Deputy Artistic Director of the Alexandrinsky Theatre Alexander Chepurov gave a lecture on the digital reconstruction of legendary performances.
The field of Chepurov’s research is the restoration of historical performances, the reconstruction of theatrical events. He described the process of restoring Anton Chekhov’s The Seagull staged at the Alexandrinsky Theatre in 1896.
In the 19th century, the possibilities for capturing theatrical actions were limited. Video recording did not exist, photography was imperfect. Today, the reconstruction of a theatrical production is an attempt to recreate the image of a historical performance based on the extant materials, through synthesising a huge amount of very different information into visual forms.
Chepurov also told about the details of the work on the reconstruction of the last pre-revolutionary performance by Vsevolod Meyerhold in Masquerade, which premiered in the Alexandrinsky Theatre in February 1917.
His story was supplemented by an interesting video that allowed one to have the unique experience of seeing the vast research on the preservation of our theatrical heritage.