Russian actress Lyudmila Tselikovskaya
Russian actress Lyudmila Tselikovskaya loved the words of the writer Franz Kafka: “Stand out in the rain, let the iron rays go right through you, glide along in the water that is trying to sweep you away, but stay erect and wait till the sun comes. It will fill you immediately and indefinitely.” The Soviet icon of style of the 1940s Ludmila was the epitome of beauty, energy, enthusiasm and liveliness. Hard to say what she could not do. The beautiful actress played tennis, knitted, danced and sang, translated from English. Lyudmila was born September 8, 1919, 95 years ago, in Astrakhan, Russia.
She was the favorite child of her parents. Her father, the head of the musical part in a local theater, her mother – an opera singer, dreamed that their daughter will follow their footsteps. When Lyudmila was 6 years old, the family moved to Moscow. Here in Gnesinyh music school she attended piano classes. Lyuda attend classes regularly, but secretly dreamed of a theater. When the daughter told the parents of her decision that she was going to enter a theater school, they started to persuade her not to do it. It was in vain, Lyudmila was firm in her decision.
After school, she filed papers to the Theatre School. The competition was great, and the chances to be accepted to the glorious school was too little. That’s what Tselikovskaya recalled: “After I had read there was a question from the Commission: “By whom have you been prepared for the exam?” I said,”Mom”. In response – laughter. Then they asked me my name, I said firmly, “Lyudmila Vasilyevna”. I was just stunned by the laughter of committee members, tears streamed from my eyes, and I ran out of the room.”
The girl did not sleep all night, confident that she hadn’t passed the competition. Imagine her surprise when the next morning she saw her name among the “accepted”. Her first movie role was in the film “Young Captains” when Tselikovskaya was still a student. Then the girl was enrolled in the Vakhtangov Theatre, where she played her first role of Clarice in the play “The Servant of Two Masters”.
Life seemed to be a fairy tale for her. Her dreams come true … Always busy, frivolous, sharp-tongued, Lyudmila unwittingly attracted the eyes of men. Behind her walked fans, sending her love notes. And she suddenly married her classmate, the handsome, Yuri Alexeev-Meshiev. But the young couple lived together not more than a year.
Then Tselikovskaya married writer Boris Voitekhov. She was already very famous, surrounded by her fans. Their marriage lasted for a few years. The reason for its collapse was a meeting with a famous actor Mikhail Zharov. Lyudmila Tselikovskaya was 23 years old, Mikhail Zharov – 42.
In the 1940s and 1950s, the popularity of Tselikovskaya was fantastic. In WWII soldiers climbed into battle with the words : “For the Motherland! For Stalin! For Tselikovskaya!”. Movies with Tselikovskaya were incredibly popular, photographs and cards with her image were collected by fans, who affectionately called her Lucy, her portraits adorned walls in apartments and houses. Schoolgirls tried to wear dresses like Tselikovskaya, they tied bows exactly as she was tying in her films. About Tselikovskaya said: ” Three million men can not be wrong”. She was showered with flowers, her performances were attended by high officials.
She tried to find happiness in her personal life, madly wanted to have a baby, but it never happened. In the end, the marriage of two stars of Soviet cinema collapsed. “Zharov loved me more than anyone else …, admitted Tselikovskaya, and I loved Alabyan.”
Karo Alabyan, fourth husband of Tselikovskaya, was a famous architect, a deputy of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, a great singer, an avid theater-goer. He was friend with Ruben Simonov, then a simple artist of Vakhtangov Theatre. Ruben Simonov introduced him to Tselikovskaya. Already at the next meeting Alabyan took her hand, carefully considered the lines on the palm and smiled: “You know, you’ll be my wife.” They have never parted since then.
In the late 1940s Alabyan and Tselikovskaya became husband and wife. She was 30, he was – 50. New marriage of famous actress was the most happy for her: in September 1949, she gave birth to a son, whom she and her husband named Alexander. According to many who knew this family Tselikovskaya was fanatical mother. Soon little Sasha was diagnosed polio. Tselikovskaya abandoned theater, cinema, devoting all her time to fight for his survival.
In 1950 Tselikovskaya continued to play in the Vakhtangov Theater, occasionally appeared in films. She starred in “We All Met Somewhere” in 1954 and “The Cricket” in 1955. The last movie again caused critics to remember the actress Tselikovskaya. At the XVI International Film Festival in Venice film was awarded the Silver Lion of St. Mark and the prize “Pizanetti” which Italian critics awarded for best foreign film.
And in 1959, another disaster occurred – from lung cancer died Caro Alabyan. According to the son, the father all life “smoked like a chimney”. For many years Tselikovskaya disappeared from the screens. Initially predisposed to excessive weight, she began to gain weight, then suffered a heart attack, and in the theater in the 1960s, played very little.
In 1963 Ludmila Tselikovskaya was awarded the title of People’s Artist of the RSFSR. In the same 1960 Tselikovskaya tied her life with the director of the Taganka Theatre Yuri Lyubimov. Marriage of Tselikovskaya and Lyubimov lasted for more than 15 years and broke up in 1976. In 1976, on tour in Budapest Lyubimov met a Hungarian actress Catalina Koontz, with whom Lyubimov fell in love at first sight.