Alena Yakovleva: "Baku is beautiful, tasty and fun city"


For theaters, Christmas and New Year holidays are the period of premieres and tours. Actress of the Moscow Satire Theater, Honored Artist of Russia, People's Artist of the Russian Federation, Alena Yakovleva, talked about tour in Baku and shared her impressions of the city in an interview with Vestnik Kavkaza.

- Tell us about the tours in Azerbaijan. What is your impression of this country, of its theater?

- I've been on tour in Baku twice, one of them coincided with my birthday, so I remember it. It was a very beautiful, tasty and fun city. Tours were absolutely wonderful because of hospitality, because of people, because of atmosphere. The first tour happened at a time when we didn't eat well, and when we arrived in Baku we came to an amazing hotel, we ate black caviar and cakes that I have never eaten even when I was abroad. I'm not a big lover of sweets, but I remember these cakes very well.

When we were in Baku a great story happened. When we were returning to hotel from somewhere, it was 2 A.M, we saw a waiter - a good-looking young man who was walking with a napkin over his arm and a glass of water on a tray. We asked: "Excuse us, but where are you taking this to?" He said: "Your stage worker ordered a glass of water." We were so shocked. We often tell this story, because there was a sense of respect and piety not only to actors, to management, but also to simple workers.

I always had ambiguous feeling towards Azerbaijan. On the one hand, this is the East, on the other this is Europe. Baku is a completely European city, very beautiful, rich, and at the same time it has its own very characteristic face. We walked around the streets. It was very interesting and informative. The reception was wonderful. I received a huge beautiful carpet, which is now in my house. I remember those wonderful days by looking at it. I remember Azerbaijani cuisine - lamb, eggplant with tomatoes. This was incredible. Since then, we always ask director of our theater, Mamedali Agayev, when will we visit Baku again.

He brought our leading actors there once. There were Georgy Pavlovich Menglet, Spartak Vasilyevich Mishulin, Roman Denisovich Tkachuk. They are old people people and some of them are not very healthy. They got out of the plane and one of those who were supposed to meet them asked: "Mamedali Huseynovich, who did you bring?" He answered: "Aqsaqals have arrived!" This tour was also great.

- Did you like Azerbaijani audience? Were there any barriers?

- I saw many beautiful women. All of them were refined, very well dressed. As for how the audience received us, the things that are accepted here are also accepted in Baku. There's no particular difference. After all, we were united once, there are still many cultural ties. They can't be broken. I think that's something that should be expected from the beginning.