Dmitry Medvedev attends the opening of the new premises of the Lermontov State Russian Drama Theatre in Grozny


Speaking at the opening ceremony, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said:

"Dear friends, life is full of events – you are prepared for some and not for others... I planned to visit Mr Kadyrov for a long time – we agreed to meet and talk about life but this event came as a pleasant surprise.

We held a meeting of the commission on the development of the North Caucasus, and this was a planned event. An invitation to attend the opening of the new premises of the Lermontov Russian Drama Theatre was not scheduled but it is a very pleasant and exciting event.

The opening of a new theatre is always an exciting and positive event in this country. But considering what the Chechen Republic has been through, the dramatic trials that befell it, and the persistent challenges it faces, this is truly a unique and extremely important occasion for our entire country and its inalienable, integral part – the Chechen Republic.

I'd like to cordially thank all those who took part in the construction of the new premises and contributed money to it. I'm confident that enormous credit for this goes to the head of the Chechen Republic, who spares nothing to make it better and more beautiful with every passing day.

I'd like to extend my heartfelt greetings to all of you on this wonderful occasion. This is a clear sign of the special friendship and good-natured relations that have linked all the ethnic groups of this country. They are of enduring significance for the development of our multi-ethnic culture.

I congratulate you on the opening of the theatre and wish every success to its company. Let me thank all of you for your work once again. Thank you very much!"

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The ceremony was attended by various guests of honour, including Russian artists Gennady Khazanov, Emmanuil Vitorgan, Lyudmila Chursina, Lidia Fedoseyeva-Shukshina, Alexandra Zakharova, Alexei Kravchenko, Olesya Sudzilovskaya and Alika Smekhova.

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The history of the State Russian Drama Theatre in Grozny dates back to 1904. In 1941 the theatre was named after poet Mikhail Lermontov. A monument to him stands next to the theatre.

Many prominent actors have performed on its stage over the years, including Leonid Bronevoi, Innokenty Smoktunovsky, Rimma Bykova, Vladimir Beloglazov and Tamara Kulagina.

The construction of the new theatre to replace the old one destroyed in the 1990s started four years ago. The theatre can accommodate 500 spectators and its total area is over 3,000 square metres.

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