Category Archives: Circle of Friends

Sweet Lika

While researching Antosha & Levitasha, I read the letters of Anton Chekhov and Lika Mizinova. I was primarily interested in their relationship with Levitan and in how the three of them played off each other to heighten a romantic rivalry … Continue reading

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Photo Portrait of Levitan

                The photo portrait of Levitan on the left is one of the most expressive taken of him and has been widely published. However, when and where the photo was taken are often … Continue reading

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Alison Anderson’s “The Summer Guest”

Alison Anderson’s novel The Summer Guest is an elegy and a delicate mystery, in which Anton Chekhov appears as a muse and an elusive friend. Katya Kendall, a Russian émigré who runs a failing small press in London, hires Ana … Continue reading

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Alexander Lensky and Chekhov’s “The Grasshopper”

Alexander Lensky, an actor and manager of the Maly Theater in Moscow, frequently attended Sophia Kuvshinnikova’s soirees, where he became friends with both Levitan and Chekhov. On several occasions Lensky performed dramatic readings of Chekhov’s stories and one-act plays. In … Continue reading

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Sergei Morozov’s 2,000 Rubles

When Levitan found out in early May 1897 about Chekhov’s coughing up of blood and 15-day stay at a Moscow clinic, he himself was on his way to the brine baths of Bad Nauheim in Germany for treatment of his … Continue reading

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Maupassant’s “Fort comme la mort”

When Levitan sought out Maria Chekhova’s sympathy for the messy affair of having both Anna Turchaninova and her daughter Varvara fall in love with him in the summer of 1896, she shot back angrily that perhaps he had been reading … Continue reading

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Levitan and Diaghilev

Sergei Diaghilev is most well-known as the impresario of the Ballets Russes based in Paris between 1909 and 1929. So it may come as a surprise to learn that in the late 1890’s he played an influential role in supporting … Continue reading

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