I have the greatest privilege of being associated with Native cultures of many continents.. thus satisfying my curiosity and desire to travel and the chance to help them with my medical expertise. these notes are from those travels. I am a professor at the University of Havana
mardi 4 septembre 2012
Mourning for a Good Person: FOMENKO and celebrating his life's lessons
He did not try to adjust to new times, nor did he
lament the effects of the
Soviet collapse, but he stayed true to himself,
letting his natural gift flourish.
turned freedom into art, overthrowing the
popular misconception that
Russian theatre derived its importance and power
from oppression by the
FOMENKO WHO DIED IN MOSCOW AGED 80 WAS A BRILLIANT RUSSIAN THEATRE DIRECTOR
His artistic freedom was no longer constrained by ideology, only by his
own unfailing sense of proportion, self-irony and ethics. While his theatre was not
reflective of life outside, it was connected to it, for resistance is also a
form of connection. He told me at the time that without decency and dignity
there could be no theatre
Fomenko deplored cynicism, graft and obsession with money. He countered it not by
protest and anger, but by creating a different artistic life, which was more
genuine and certainly more liveable than Russia’s imitative reality.
The obituary and the comments by Prospero are from this week's The Economist. The words convey the essence of the life of the man who shone despite the ideological restrictions, which was not his.
Lesson 1 If you place Ideology before people, you will end up serving another master and your talent would be only as good as a photocopy..
that reminded me of a poem I read while still schoolboy:
Xerox Candy Bar
Ah, you're just a copy of all the candy bars I've ever eaten.
Fomenko turned his Freedom into Art, condemned
the obsession with money, which the developing
countries and newly FREE countries blindly follow,
turning good people into robots and local
psychiatrists and psychologists richer. How to make
the best of what has come your way, in his case,
Freedom; for many of us, it is also a FREEDOM of
Discovery of another path, to listen and march to
another drummer and be courageous in it, the
happiness naturally follows.
And our own set of rules of morality regarding
other human beings: be kind, be helpful and dont
be arrogant with whatever little talent you have been
In my travels around the world, I have met people
who embody such principles, in unexpected corners,
Vedado in Cuba, Seri Kembangan in Malaysia,
Bogor in Indonesia, Muzquiz in Mexico, Walthill
among the American Indians.. the list goes on and on
Thinking of Russia, one is seduced by the
melancholy of its literature, from Sholokov to
Chekov, with his plays and short stories..Under the
Nevsky Prospekt Cemetery the earth carries so
emotions.. those whose pens turned the russian
of one thousand years..
I am so glad I got to see plays by Chekhov (The
Cherry Orchard, Two Sisters, Uncle Vanya,
Seagull) during my days as a medical student in
London, staged either at RSC or at the West End,
the other influential playwright of those days was
Henrik Ibsen with his Hedda Gabler, Wild Duck and
A Doll's House.
Chekhov is remembered for his wonderful plays
and novellas but dont forget he was also a
dedicated doctor...would that have influenced a
budding doctor, away from his home in Australia?
The Economist remains to me one of the best
pleasures of the week, to read in it, flawless
English language and subject matters not on CNN
or the local rags that call themselves Newspapers
or the Internet News sites such as Yahoo!..The only
exception I would make would be to The New York
Times.. for all those sunday mornings with its thick