psuliterature

Dr. Boris Proskurnin Becomes PSU Distinguished Professor

PSU Academic Council has awarded the title of Honored Professor of Perm State University to Dr. Boris Proskurnin, Head of the Department of World Literature and Culture, Doctor of Philology, Professor.

For more than 50 years, Dr. Boris Proskurnin has been contributing to PSU progress – starting as a student and a fellow assistant, and reaching the professor and Doctor of Sciences status, devoting most of his life to alma mater. His biography covers building the University literally, as part of a student construction team, as well as a running PSU Student Club (1973-1976). Combining research and teaching activity with the Head of the Department of Foreign Literature post, Dr. Boris Proskurnin also headed PSU International Department (1999-2003) and PSU Methodological Council (1998-2003).

Dr. Boris Proskurnin is among key researchers of Victorian literature in Russia, and an expert on Anthony Trollope (1815-1882). His name is associated with the first contacts with the University of Oxford, contributing to growing sister city relations of Perm and Oxford. For almost twenty years, Dr. Boris Proskurnin served as a Dean of the Faculty of Modern Foreign Languages ​​and Literature. Thanks to his personal strive and the team he led, PSU gained new prospects fruited in solid national and internationally recognized projects.

Since 2002, the title of Distinguished Professor has been awarded to professors who have made a significant contribution to Perm State University progress. At the present moment, 27 names of prominent scholars are listed in the Book of Distinguished Professors, stored at the Museum of Perm State University History.

Step Into Chinese New Year – Singing Song About a Snowflake!

Song Tianyao (China), a graduate of Perm State University has recorded an unusual congratulation on the Chinese New Year. (As a sleeve note: Song Tianyao has recently defended her PhD (candidate of sciences) thesis in philology at PSU, congratulations!). Today, singing the famous Snowflake Song, she addressed all those Chinese and international students interested in East Asian culture – wishing everyone a happy holiday:

“… The New Year’s on the way,

Will make your dream come true:

As long as snowflakes are not melting,

Don’t let the snowflakes keep on melting –

Until the clock tower ends the tune,

Until the clock tower ends the tune…”

For the Chinese people, the New Year is not just a change of dates, as it marks the start of spring and so blossoming of nature. The astrological sign of 2022 is the Tiger, who shows respect to beauty and people following it. While the Tiger prefers the red color, the tradition in general supports fires and loud noises, believed to scare evil forces away. On the night of 31 January to 1 February, fireworks were around the University campus – the Chinese students celebrating the entry into a new life cycle.

“I would like to congratulate all those Chinese students currently studying in Russia on the Spring Festival,” says Song Tianyao. “We all know the severe virus situation makes us hard to follow it. Yet, I believe together we can overcome this challenge.”

The holiday begins a week before the event itself – started with a general cleaning, for the Tiger loves clean houses and hardworking people. Despite the distance from their homeland, each student strives to decorate a hostel space with bright colors – using lanterns and symbols of the year as decor. Students call their parents, yet refrain from communal celebrations around a broad dinner table with dumplings:

“For me, this New Year is quite unusual, as I am celebrating it alone, trying to stay safe and escape the potential illness. With the completion of my studies, I am planning to get back to China, so I have to limit my social contacts,” Song Tianyao admits.

The Snowflake Song was first performed in “The Magicians” Soviet film in 1982 by Olga Rozhdestvenskaya and the Good Fellows band. Although not a holiday hit, it became a favorite choice among many later artists, from pop to punk – seeing several remakes in 2002, 2008, 2014 and 2016.

“I came into this song completely by accident. Immediately since I heard it, I liked it. Our New Year’s songs are not related to winter, as we have a different climate all across China. And, in some parts, like the South, we don’t have snow at all,” the Chinese graduate shares.

On her arrival back home, not only Song Tianyao will be able to chat with her family at a holiday dinner, set fireworks and make a traditional family photo; she will also launch a paper lantern, lifting a card with her wishes up into the skies. Meanwhile, Perm State University will remain in touch with her and other alumni, waiting for new students and hoping for a brighter new year.

For reference:

For three years, Song Tianyao has been working as an assistant for the Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics, PSU and teaching Chinese language to students of three faculties – Philology, Geography and Modern Foreign Languages and Literature. In December 2021, Song Tianyao defended her PhD (candidate of sciences) thesis on Artistic Reception of B. Vasiliev’s Military Prose in China.

In the academic year 2021-2022 at PSU, 28 people, including 22 foreigners (21 students from China and 1 native of Japan), are enrolled in the 1st year postgraduate course in Linguistics and Literary Studies – mostly due to another PSU alumnus from China, who currently teaches at the Chengdu Institute of the Sichuan University of Foreign Studies.

Foreign Musician to Join a Theatre Play by PSU Alumnus

On the very first days of winter 2021, a German-based musician IVAN joins Nikolay Gostyukhin (Perm, Moscow, Russia; Berlin, Germany), graduate of the Faculty of Philology, PSU, for his production of “Illusions” – a theater play and its televised version by Ivan Vyrypaev a popular contemporary Russian writer.

The play by Vyrypaev is a story about the illusory nature of love. It consists of monologues by four people, telling a touching life story of two married couples who have been friends with each other for many years. The play characters step into a frank conversation and sincere contact – the act many of us, spectators, have been deprived of during the COVID-19 epidemic and the following lockdown.

Ivan Vyrypaev is a popular Russian playwright, screenwriter, film director, actor and art director. He is a regarded as a leading figure in the Russian New Drama movement.

The music for both projects was composed by IVAN (Ivan Axenov), a young Berlin musician of Russian origin. The play and the film share common musical pieces. For a recent play, IVAN wrote several more musical themes.

“I’m a musician and a pathologist,” IVAN states. “How is this related? No way. Music has been with me since childhood, and I learned the specialty of a doctor later. Every day when I look through a microscope, I sort of look down on groups of people. And it gives me a lot of knowledge about the structure of society and our collective unconscious. It sounds very clever, but it’s actually quite simple. I look at the world with my eyes, and I reflect it in the form of sounds.”

According to Nikolay Gostyukhin, the director, the play is a story about the illusory nature of love: “at the end of days, you may find that for the whole of your love you have actually loved someone else.”

For the recent performance, Nikolai Gostyukhin, will be assisted by Alexei Khoroshev, the lighting designer, Perm Opera and Ballet Theater, and Nikita Goinov, designer and teacher, the Tochka Design School. Nikolay Gostyukhin made his debut as a play director for the performances of the “Iranian Conference” (2019) and “Excitement” (2020), which were also based on plays by Ivan Vyrypaev.

“Illusions” Play Page.

Photos from the rehearsal.

“Illusions” Movie Play page.

Photos from the film version.

Ivan Axenov (aka IVAN).

Additional information: Petr Kravchenko, + 7912 78 202 96

Musician’s Picture Source: Ivan Axenov’s Facebook Page: @100005863154670

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