Drama, exile and success. The life path of Natalia Sats

On August 27, 1903, Natalia Sats was born - theater and opera director, founder of the first Theater for Young Spectators in Kazakhstan, which she headed for thirteen years, making a huge contribution to the culture of our country. Let's remember what was the life path of Natalia Ilyinichna.


Pre-Almaty period

Natalia Sats, one of the most important figures for Kazakh culture, was born in Irkutsk, but a year after her birth, Natalia's family moved to Moscow. From early childhood, Natalia was immersed in the world of the theater: her father, composer Ilya Sats, collaborated with the Moscow Art Theater and was friends with Stanislavsky, Vakhtangov, Kachalov, Rachmaninoff.

Natalya herself tried to keep up with her father - she played at the Griboedov Drama Studio, graduated from the Scriabin Music College. In the difficult time of the Civil War, in 1918, fifteen-year-old Natalia was in charge of the children's sector of the theatrical and musical section of the Moscow City Council, and in 1921 she headed the Moscow Theater for Children. She made a real revolution in the children's theater - she introduced symphony concerts for children, staged musical performances. Natalia Sats was also in demand abroad: Berlin, Buenos Aires. And it is unlikely that she would have ended up in Alma-Ata, whose cultural life was only in its infancy in the middle of the 20th century, but then the state intervened in the matter ...

New life in Kazakhstan

In 1937, the husband of Natalia Sats Israel Weitzer, People's Commissar of Internal Trade of the USSR, was arrested for "counter-revolutionary activities" and shot. Natalia also received five years of the Gulag as “a member of the family of a traitor to the motherland”. Natalia served time and was released in 1942, but, like everyone who was convicted under political articles, she did not have the right to enter Moscow. On reflection, she went to Alma-Ata, where many outstanding artists lived in evacuation. Already in 1945, Sats founded the Alma-Ata Theater of the Young Spectator (now the State Academic Russian Theater for Children and Youth named after Natalia Sats).

She headed the theater until 1958 - when the relief of the Khrushchev "thaw" allowed her to return to her almost native Moscow.

Theater - you are the world!

The new theater opened on November 7, 1945. In the morning of that day, the audience was shown "Little Red Riding Hood", staged by Natalia Sats herself, and in the evening - "The Siege of Leiden" by Isidor Shtok, staged by director Viktor Rozov. For thirteen years, Natalia Sats opened a studio for children in the theater, staged many wonderful performances: "Twelfth Night", "Two Captains", "Young Guard", "Two Veronets". In 1946, a Kazakh troupe will appear in the theater, and in 1985 the Youth Theater will be divided into two theaters - Russian and Kazakh.

After returning

Returning to Moscow, Sats founded and headed the world's first Moscow Children's Musical Theater, was a professor at GITIS, and wrote many books and articles. She died in Moscow in 1993 at the age of 90.


Author: Igor Toporkov

Photo: official website of the Youth Theatre. Natalia Sats

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