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You can't miss the sign saying “Theatre” which occupies two full storeys of the building's frontage. The overhang above the theatre entrance removes any further doubt - “Theatre On Malaya Bronnaya”.
Today's Theatre on Malaya Bronnaya occupies a three-storey wing of a manor house which was once a nobleman's estate, and was rebuilt early in the C19th. At the end of that century the premises re-opened under the title of “public concert-hall”. Thereafter its varied uses included a student club, a clubroom for cab-drivers, a concert-room, and a club for workers in trade and industry. Meanwhile during the 1920s the newly-founded State Jewish Theatre failed to find fame until it was based there.
The State Jewish Theatre was closed-down after WW2, when the USSR began its ideological tussle with cosmopolitanism. Events began in 1948 when the Artistic Director of the theatre, Solomon Mikhoels, was murdered in a faked “accident” on Stalin's orders. The new replacement Director was quickly arrested and sent off to the camps, where he perished. From July 1949 the theatre's newspaper listings mysteriously ceased. The final performance took place on November 16th 1949, after which the theatre was shut-down entirely. “Absenteeism” was cited as the reason.
The Theatre on Malaya Bronnaya – or Moscow Drama Theatre as it once was – has existed for more than half a century. It rose to popularity in the 1960s. The phenomenal actors on the theatre's staff were the mainstay of its success. These days the theatre puts out a repertoire of both Russian and foreign classics, alongside children's fables.
We would like to offer you a very interesting tour in the centre of Moscow – around Patriarshiye Prudy or Patriarch’s Ponds. For the last 200 years, there has been only one pond known to the public, although, the name of Tryokhprudny Pereulok (lit. Three-Pond Lane) suggests there used to be more. It is known that in 1683-1684 Patriarch Joachim ordered to dig three ponds for drainage of wetlands and fish farming to the patriarchal table. So, such ponds were fishponds.
The area is named after the seventeenth century Patriarch's Goat Sloboda located on the Goat Marsh. This marsh once was connected by a brook to the Presnya River in the west; by 1739, when the first topographic map was compiled, the brook disappeared and the marsh separated from the Presnya. People considered the swamp as an anomalous zone; apparently this caused a proverb ("Thomas has hastened, but made people laugh - he sticked in Patriarshy").
The pond acquired its present shape and was cleaned up in 1830-31 in the frames of the plan to rebuild Moscow after the Fire of 1812.
At the beginning of the XX century the area around the Ponds was actively built up. Among the buildings appeared at this time, you can see the mansion of Tarasov. In 1924, the Soviet government in the fight against religion renamed the Patriarch's Ponds in Pioneer Ponds. In 1945 in Ermolaevsky Lane a house for senior military commanders of the USSR was built.
Near the Ponds you will find a monument to Ivan Krylov. The fabulist sits surrounded by animated characters of his works: a monkey in front of a mirror, barking pug after the elephant, crow with cheese.
This district is, directly or indirectly, connected with Russian poets: Karamzin, Zhukovsky, Pushkin, Gogol, Baratynsky, Krylov. Not far from the Ponds lived Vladimir Mayakovsky. In Tree-Pond Lane Marina Tsvetaeva was born.
The novel by Mikhail Bulgakov “Master and Margarita” begins at Patriarch's Ponds. During the tour you will see the Museum-Theatre "Bulgakov's House". The district has a number of museums: Yermolova Museum, State Museum of Oriental Art, Anton Chekhov’s Museum, Svyatoslav Richter Memorial Apartment, Alexey Tolstoy Memorial Apartment, Maxim Gorky Memorial House, etc.