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Entries / Schwarz E.L.(1896-1858), playwright

Schwarz E.L.(1896-1858), playwright

Categories / Literature. Book Publishing/Personalia

SCHWARZ Evgeny Lvovich (1896-1958, Leningrad), playwright and prose writer. He studied at the Faculty of Law of Moscow University in 1914-16, although he did not graduate. He first came to Petrograd in 1914; in 1921 he returned to Petrograd as an actor with P.K. Weisbrem's Theatre. Among the literary milieu of Petrograd, he gained a reputation as a brilliant storyteller, wit and improviser. He frequented the House of Arts, and thus was pictured as Genya Chorn in O.D. Forsh's novel Ship of Fools. He worked as the secretary of K.I. Chukovsky, and contributed to Rainbow Publishing House as well as to various periodicals (Vorobey, Chizh etc.). He was on the editorial staff of the journals Leningrad, Ezh, and at the children's department of Gosizdat (The State Publishing House). He was close to various Literary Groups, the Serapion Brothers and OBERIU (Association for Realistic Art). He survived the first months of the siege in Leningrad and was evacuated in December 1941. His debut as a playwright started with his fairy tail Underwood (staged by A.A. Bryantsev at Leningrad Theatre for the Young in 1929). He went down in the history of Russian literature as the author of plays which combine traditional themes of fairy tale with the elegance of artistic form and the depth of socio-philosophic issues raised. Most of Schwarz' plays were produced in Leningrad. Schwarz worked for many years in close co-operation with N.P. Akimov and his Theatre of Comedy; this collaboration was the most significant fact of Schwarz' literary work and led to many of his plays being staged at the Theatre of Comedy. These, in particular, include The Princess and the Swineherd, 1934; The Shadow, 1940; Ordinary Marvel, earlier entitled The Bear, 1956; The Dragon, staged in 1962, written in 1944; etc. His work as a script writer at Lenfilm film studio was fruitful: many films were shot to his screenplays came to be accepted as part of the golden age of Soviet cinematography. These include Cinderella (film directors N.N. Kosheverova, M.G. Shapiro, 1947), and First-Form Girl (film director I.A. Frez, 1947). The memoirs and diaries of E. Schwarz portrait many events and figures of the literary and artistic life of Petrograd - Leningrad (see his book I'm Living Restlessly, published posthumously in 1990). The first address of Schwarz in Petrograd was 59 Nevsky Prospect; in the late 1920s he lived at 39 Mokhovaya Street; in the first half of the 1930s he lived at 9 Seventh Sovetskaya Street and 16 Liteyny Avenue; in 1935-55 (except the years spent in the evacuation) he lived at 9 Griboedova Canal Embankment; from 1955 he had been living at 8 Malaya Posadskaya Street (memorial plaque); in the late 1950s he resided in his summer house in Komarovo. He was buried at Bogoslovskoe cemetery.

References: Цимбал С. Л. Евгений Шварц: Критико-биогр. очерк. Л., 1961; Мы знали Евгения Шварца. Л.; М., 1966; Житие сказочника: Евгений Шварц: Из автобиогр. прозы. Письма. Воспоминания о писателе. М., 1991.

D. N. Cherdakov.

Akimov Nikolay Pavlovich
Bryantsev Alexander Alexandrovich
Chukovsky Korney Ivanovich
Forsh Olga Dmitrievna
Frez Ilya Abramovich
Kosheverova Nadezhda Nikolaevna
Schwarz Evgeny Lvovich
Shapiro Mikhail G.
Weisbrem Pavel Karlovich

7th Sovetskaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 9
Griboedova Canal Embankment/Saint Petersburg, city, house 9
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 16
Malaya Posadskaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 8
Mokhovaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 39
Nevsky prospect/Saint Petersburg, city, house 59

Цимбал С. Л. Евгений Шварц: Критико-биогр. очерк. Л., 1961
Мы знали Евгения Шварца. Л.; М., 1966
Житие сказочника: Евгений Шварц: Из автобиогр. прозы. Письма. Воспоминания о писателе. М., 1991

The subject Index
Arts, The House of, literary society
Rainbow Publishing House, 1922-1930
Chiz and Yezh (Siska and Hedgehog), journals
Leningrad, journal
Serapion's Brothers
Akimov Comedy Theatre
Lenfilm, Film Studio
Bogoslovskoe Cemetery