The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Strepetova, Polina (Pelageia) Antip’evna


Born Oct. 4(?), 1850, in Nizhny Novgorod (now Gorky); died Oct. 4 (17), 1903, in St. Petersburg. Russian actress.

Strepetova did not receive formal training for the theater, but she learned much from her fellow performers, including A. I. Shubert, a pupil of M. S. Shchepkin, and her own husband, the actor M. I. Pisarev. Her art was greatly influenced by the aesthetic views of V. G. Belinskiiand N. A. Dobroliubov.

Strepetova made her debut in Rybinsk in 1865. She appeared in provincial theaters, performing in comedies, vaudevilles, dramas, and operettas. Her talent for tragedy was revealed in the roles of Lizaveta in Pisemskii’s A Bitter Fate and Katerina in Os-trovskii’s The Thunderstorm, which she performed in Kazan in 1871 and which became her greatest achievement as an actress. One of her best roles was Stepanida in Potekhin’s The Evil Influence of Money (early 1880’s).

Strepetova was the first Russian actress to reveal the spiritual strength of the Russian woman. In her roles she depicted the Russian woman’s lack of rights and at the same time expressed social protest. Strepetova’s sincerity, spirit, and emotional power compensated for a certain unevenness in her acting and for the lack of a strong physical presence. She was particularly successful in the roles of Mar’ia Andreevna in Ostrovskii’s The Poor Bride and Mar’itsa in Averkiev’s The Old Days in Kashira and in the title role in Ostrovskii and Gedeonov’s Vasilisa Melent’eva.

In 1873, Strepetova acted with the Public Theater in Moscow. She often performed with the Arts Circle directed by A. N. Ostrovskii. In 1880 she performed at the A. A. Brenko Pushkin Theater in Moscow. From 1881 to 1890 and in 1899 and 1900 she was with the company of the St. Petersburg Aleksandrinskii Theater. There she performed a number of new roles, including Kru-chinina in Ostrovskii’s Guilty Though Guiltless and Sarra in Chekhov’s Ivanov. However, conflicts between Strepetova’s ideological and artistic convictions and the conservatism of the imperial theater’s directorship led to her eventual dismissal from the company.

Many persons involved in the arts praised Strepetova’s outstanding gifts as a tragedienne. A. N. Ostrovskii wrote: “As a natural talent, she is a rare, outstanding phenomenon. . . . Her milieu is that of women of the lower and middle classes of society; her inspiration comes from simple, strong passions” (Poln. sobr. soch., vol. 10, 1960, p. 282).


Vospominaniia ipis’ma. Moscow-Leningrad, 1934.


P. A. Strepetova: Zhizn i tvorchestvo tragicheskoi aktrisy. Moscow-Leningrad, 1959.
Fel’dman, Z. Polina Antip’evna Strepetova. Moscow-Leningrad, 1947.
Ben’iash, R. M. Pelageia Antip’evna Strepetova. Leningrad, 1967.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The semiliterate Pelageia Vlasova in Gor'kii's Mother offers an apt illustration of this.
His maternal grandmother Pelageia Ivanovna (nee Bogoroditskaia) lived in Moscow in a communal apartment near the Novodevichyi Monastery.
Pelageia Ivanovna was not an exception to this rule.
Of course, at this time several people from the Yakutat colony continued to still remain captives of the Tlingit: a certain "German" and the settlers Luka Filipov and (Avdot'ia or Pelageia?) Ivanova, whom the Tlingit confined quite "decently," not "using them in work." (71)
Two of his older brothers--Andrei and Ivan--had already been in the RAC service for several years by that time, although their sister Pelageia and Indian mother continued to live among the Tlingit.
"Your report without year, month, or date was received by this Office, in which it is reported that the soldier's wife Pelageia Iakovleva unjustly complains about you in regard to her oppression and demands for dues," the letter began.
The first major issue was the substance of the soldier's wife Pelageia Iakovleva's complaints, which called into question the ways in which authority was expressed within the village when a particularly troublesome issue--like a recruit levy--occurred.
The tale of Pelageia Iakovleva and her fellow peasants, then, is a tale of the conflict between authorities within and outside the village, and of individuals' attempts to bolster their own positions vis-a-vis one or the other sources of control by means of the written word.
A 1569/70 bill of sale and title clearance, for property sold by Andrei Rakov to the Archangel Cathedral in Moscow, explained that Ivan had granted the estate to Rakov in exchange for the dowry land of his wife, Pelageia, in Kostroma District, that Ivan had confiscated for "the tsar's bright presence, the oprichnina" (v svoi tsar'skuiu svetlost' v oprichninu).
(33) Pelageia Sharav'eva from Sverdlovsk province remembered how she was taken to the bathhouse when she was ready to give birth.
So they say something like: 'What's this, old woman, you promised to look at my cow and you aren't coming?'" (80) Pelageia Sharav'eva, for example, managed to use a wide variety of expressions referring to her pregnancy in just a few sentences.