Shchepkin, Mikhail

Image - Taras Shevchenko's drawing of Mikhail Shchepkin (1858).

Shchepkin, Mikhail [Щепкін, Михаїл; Ščepkin, Mixajil], b 17 November 1788 in Krasne, Slobidska Ukraine gubernia, d 23 August 1863 in Yalta, Tavriia gubernia (buried in Moscow). Actor and one of the founders of theatrical realism on Ukrainian and Russian stages. A serf until 1822, he began his career in P. Barsov’s troupe in Kursk (1805) and then acted in Y. Kalynovsky and I. Shtein’s troupe in Kharkiv (1816–18) and in the Poltava Free Theater (1818–21), led his own troupe in Kyiv (1822), and worked in the Moscow Malyi Theater (from 1823). He toured frequently in Ukraine; his repertoire included Chuprun in Ivan Kotliarevsky’s Moskal'-charivnyk (The Muscovite-Sorcerer) and the title role in Hryhorii Kvitka-Osnovianenko’s Shel'menko-denshchyk (Shelmenko the Orderly). He was a friend of Taras Shevchenko.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 4 (1993).]

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