Filatov, Valentin Ivanovich
Born Aug. 12, 1920, in Sverdlovsk; died Aug. 7, 1979, in Moscow. Soviet circus performer and animal trainer. People’s Artist of the USSR (1969). Member of the CPSU from 1953.
Filatov is the son of circus performers; his father, Ivan Lazarevich Filatov (1873–1956), ran balagans and traveling circuses. Performing in the circus since the age of six, Filatov was an acrobat, equilibrist, and animal trainer in A. N. Kornilov’s group. In 1949 he formed the act “Bear Circus,” which brought him fame. Filatov’s group, which included members of his own family, has toured abroad and has appeared in the films Arena of the Brave, Mishel’ and Mishutka, and Not All Bears Hibernate.
Filatov was a prizewinner at the International Festival of Circus Art in Warsaw in 1956. He was awarded the Order of the Red Banner of Labor and various medals.