Bernes, Mark

Bernes, Mark Naumovich


Born Sept. 8 (21), 1911; died Aug. 16, 1969, in Moscow. Soviet Russian motion picture actor. People’s Artist of the RSFSR (1965). Member of the CPSU since 1953.

The first important roles played by Bernes in motion pictures were Krasovskii (The Miners, 1937), Kostia Zhigulev (The Man with a Rifle, 1938), and Sergei Kozhukharov (The Fighters, 1939). This actor’s performances were distinguished by simplicity, charm, and a gentle sense of humor. Bernes also appeared as an estrada (variety stage) singer, a performer of lyrical songs. He achieved fame through his roles in films devoted to the Great Patriotic War, for example, Arkadii Dziubin (Two Fighters, 1943), the driver Minutka (The Great Turning Point, 1945), and the sailor Chmyga (The Third Blow, 1948). During the 1950’s and 1960’s, Bernes created complex characterizations of people who had led hard lives. His best parts during these years were Umar Magomet (Far From Moscow, 1950, based on the novel of that name by Azhaev), Kosarev (Taras Shevchenko, 1951), Chubuk (School of Courage, based on Gaidar’s novella The School, 1954), Rodionov (They Were the First, 1956), Ogonek (Night Patrol, 1957), the colonel (This Happened in the Militia Station, 1963). Bernes won a State Prize of the USSR in 1951. He was awarded two orders and various medals.