Igor Fedirko is a Ukrainian director, actor and puppeteer. He was born in 1990 in Korsun-Shevchenkivskyi, studied at the National Karpenko-Karyi University of Theater, Film and Television in Kyiv, and at a young age, he became the chairman of the National Association of Ukrainian Puppet Theaters UNIMA and a two-time recipient of the prestigious Pectoral Award.
Currently, he works at the National Academic Puppet Theater in Kyiv and has been leading the creative processes there since 2017. He is part of a young generation of artists who, in a time of opening, are searching for a new balance between tradition and renewal. In this, he shares the fate of many of his contemporaries, who
are not supported by their superiors, but thwarted.
Under his direction, more than 16 productions have been created to date, which – as generally expected – are primarily aimed at young children. But in the performances “Lungs”, “Nika Turbina”, “Oskar” and “Kaidash Family” explicitly addresses an adult audience. Addressing themes such as death, violence, sex and relationships, the plays develop such depth and intensity that at times one has to rub one’s eyes, as some of the whole drama takes place on a tiny stage. The term “puppet theater” truly comes into play here, raising the question of why characters like Punch and Pinocchio are often underestimated.
The small stages and the puppets as idols are ideal for a digital future. They can be in action anywhere, their gestures are universally understandable and international, easy to dub, and fantastic scenarios are created with little effort. A city adventure, a space adventure, a jungle adventure; all of these, unlike elaborate movie sets, are easily
to accomplish. With new formats, the puppets and dolls could conquer the Internet and thus our children’s and living rooms. They have the potential to combine tradition with modernity, craftsmanship with the digital world, and history with the future. And all of this in a magnificent, culturally rich tradition that represents the good, sustainable values that parents desperately seek. How would mom and dad react if their child suddenly said to them, “I want to watch this exciting series. Let’s go to the theater!”?
Art Crossing Borders would like to support this development and supports Igor Fedirko in his projects. The association aims to make him, his ideas, and his theater accessible to a larger audience and to initiate a mutual exchange of young theater practitioners between Germany and Ukraine together with him. A new perspective on puppet theater will emerge: modern, handmade, and multimedia-driven. Not just fairy tales for little children. Puppet theater is intended to become “more mature” and take its rightful place alongside other performing arts, stepping out of its niche existence.
A puppet play about the fate of the Soviet poet of the same name (born in present-day Ukraine, Yalta, Crimea), who dictated her first poems at the age of 4, published a poetry collection at the age of 8, and tragically died at the age of 27 by jumping out of a window. Igor’s staging focuses entirely on the main character. Only she is a marionette puppet, all other roles are portrayed by hands. These hands manipulate, comfort, make agreements with other hands, act rejecting or exploitative. In the process, the genuine voice of the young Nika Turbina, captured on tape recordings, leads the audience through Nika’s heart-wrenching and tragic story as she recites her poems.
A two-man chamber play by English author Duncan Macmillan about a husband and wife who find each other and slip through the ups and downs of a relationship at a breathtaking pace. Igor stages this drama with reduced means. On stage there is nothing but a sandbox, the element of which he poetically and intelligently uses in all its forms for the performance.
Awards & Recognitions
“2015 Kyiv Pectoral for the best production”
“2019 Kyiv Pectoral for the best implementation”
Mit dem Künstler, der Gruppe oder dem Programm zusammen entwickelte Projekte, für die wir Unterstützung suchen.