Tolubeev, Iurh

Tolubeev, Iurh Vladimirovich


Born Apr. 18 (May 1), 1906, in St. Petersburg. Soviet actor. People’s Artist of the USSR (1956), Hero of Socialist Labor (1976).

Tolubeev graduated from the Leningrad Institute of Stage Arts in 1929. He made his debut while still a student in 1926. He acted in various Leningrad theaters and, since 1942, has been with the A. S. Pushkin Drama Theater. Tolubeev’s interpretations of a wide range of characters are remarkable in their grasp of motivation and psychology. He is noted for his expressive powers, and his performances run the emotional gamut from the gently benevolent to the mercilessly satirical.

Tolubeev’s finest roles were the gorodnichii (town chief) in Gogol’s The Inspector-General, Polonius in Shakespeare’s Hamlet, and Bubnov in Gorky’s The Lower Depths. He played the gorodnichii and Polonius in films as well. Tolubeev’s greatest triumph, however, was the role of Vozhak in Vishnevskii’s An Optimistic Tragedy; he was awarded the Lenin Prize for this performance in 1958. His film roles include Sancho Panza in Don Quixote (1957), Inspector Pilipenko in The Accident (1965), and Kuzmich in Chronicle of a Dive-bomber (1968). In 1967 a documentary film about his work, Iurii Tolubeev, was released.

Tolubeev received the State Prize of the USSR in 1947 and the K. S. Stanislavsky State Prize of the RSFSR in 1970; he has been awarded the Order of Lenin, two other orders, and various medals.