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электронный журнал "Новые исследования Тувы"

Chingis Oorzhak plays with dolls - professionally

At the age of 26, Chingis Oorzhak still plays with dolls. And he does it professionally. He learned to craft them independently from various ordinary materials at Moscow State special institute of arts, where he received his diploma of  actor-puppet master. Today Chingis continues his beloved work already at the small scene "Tete-a-tete" of the National theatre of Tuva.

From 25 December to 5 January, the small scene at "Tete-a-tete" will be showing an new year's tale  "Morozok" ("Little Frost"), based on Yuri Shutskiy's play, produced by director Svetlana Ondar, where Chingis plays one of the main roles - Grandfather. But some eight years ago, he chose a totally ordinary profession of a welder. After getting his "welder" cover, the young native of Barun-Khemchik district, as a man should, got ready to go to the army, but the medical committee instead sent him for an urgent surgery. The kid went to the capital.

Completely by chance, Chingis's relatives that he was staying with, saw an announcement about recruitment of graduates for Moscow state special institute. The admissions committee came on the invitation by Ministry of Culture of Tuva. Knowing that the kid was talented, the relatives advised him to try his luck. The admission exam required the graduates to take a dictation in Russian language, to sing a song and to read a poem. Chingis was a good singer, but he had some doubts about reading a poem. He thought of a fable by Andrei Krylov "Sparrow and Pigeon", translated into Tuvan language. But when the future artist read it to his uncle and aunt, they weren't too excited. Uncle explained to him: the main thing is expression and art, not knowledge of the text.

His relatives' tutoring helped Chingis - he passed all the tests. To this day he remembers with a trembling heart how they announced the list of those who passed the contest, and his name was called last. All this time the boy was sitting there neither alive nor dead.

Six years went by like a single unforgettable moment. The graduates from remote Tuva were taken by instructor Olga Minacheva under her wing., who literally became a second mother to them. Chingis especially liked her lessons in acting craft and puppet mastery. He learnt the technology of  making traditional puppets, out of papier-mache. His first one - a polyurethane ballerina - he made when still a student; the group toured with the ballerina throughout the republic, and then Chingis gave her to Tuvan State Philharmony.  And today, in his free time, he likes to make dolls - he finds it relaxing.

The first to appreciate Chingis's talent were Moscow children. It was to them that the students-puppet-masters presented shows produced by Olga Minacheva "Miracle in Feathers", "Once upon a time there was a little man" and "Super-donut", which became their diploma projects, and which were later presented to Tuvan audience. There was another drama show in Tuvan language, produced by Galina Dorzhu, who was a curator for the Tuvan students in Moscow. The premiere of "Kys khalyyr" took place in Moscow and on the internet, where it received good reviews.

-  One day Amadu Mamadakov came to a show, and he said that he heard a lot about our production and has long been wanting to see it. We were very happy to hear it. In general, when you get good responses from well known actors, it is an inspiration, and if you get the honor to work with them, it is already a great success. After all, grateful audiences give an actor wings most of all. To see the happy faces of children at the show - that is real happiness.

Ayana Oolak,, translated by Heda Jindrak
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