Pashennaia, Vera Nikolaevna
Born Sept. 7 (19), 1887, in Moscow; died there Oct. 28, 1962. Soviet Russian actress. People’s Artist of the USSR (1937).
The daughter of the actor N. P. Roshchin-Insarov, Pashennaia entered the Moscow Theater School in 1904 as a pupil of A. P. Lenskii. In 1907 she joined the company of the Malyi Theater. Pashennaia excelled in Russian comedies and Russian everyday-life dramas, playing roles of strong and upright positive heroines. At the same time she satirically and pitilessly exposed the immorality of proprietors and the foundations of the “kingdom of ignorance.” Her best roles were Evgeniia, Murzavetskaia, and Kabanikha in A Lively Place, Wolves and Sheep, and The Thunderstorm, all by Ostrovskii; the title role in Liubov’ Iarovaia and Polia Semenova in On the Bank of the Neva, both by Trenev; Anna Nikolaevna in Leonov’s Invasion; the title role in Gorky’s Vassa Zheleznova; and the Old Housewife Niskavuori in Wuolijoki’s The Rocky Nest. In 1921, Pashennaia played the role of Larisa in Ostrovskii’s Girl Without a Dowry in the Korsh Theater. In 1922 and 1923 she toured abroad with the Moscow Art Theater, playing among other roles Irina in A. K. Tolstoy’s Tsar Fedor Ioannovich.
Beginning in 1914, Pashennaia taught in the Malyi Theater studio, becoming a professor there in 1941. From 1945 she taught at the M. S. Shchepkin Theater School. She received the State Prize of the USSR in 1943 and the Lenin Prize in 1961. She was awarded the Order of Lenin two times, the Order of the Red Banner of Labor, and several medals.