Get into the summer ball. Conversation with actors Elīna Vāni and Imants Strads



Elīna Vāne and Imants Strads.

Elīna Vāne and Imants Strads.

Publicity (Dainis Gaideelis) photo

Aija Kaukule, “Culture Marks”, JSC “Latvijas Mediji”


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During Midsummer Week in several cities of Latvia – Roja, Bauska, Preili and Līgo evening, on June 23, in Raiskums Park – there will be a concert dedicated to the legendary film “Limousine in the Color of Midsummer Night” by Jānis Streičs, which turns 41 this year. The concerts will feature both unforgettable songs from the film and compositions from the extensive repertoire of composer Raimonds Pauls, sung by popular Latvian theater singers Ērika Eglija-Grāvele, Ieva Puķe, Lauris Dzelzītis, Lelde Dreimane and Edgars Puj. This time, the always sparkling couple of actors will meet on the stage – Daile Theater actor IMANTS STRADS and Valmiera Theater actress ELĪNA VĀNE. During the immersion, the two actors share their summer feelings and joy, playing together on the same stage.

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– After a long break, such an important part of our culture returns – summer open-air performances, concerts. I know your two calendars are pretty variegated. How does this return feel?

Elīna: – Very good. As if you had been put to death for two years and then released. So a lot of people now have jobs one after the other, but that’s fine! The same goes for the public. When performing, for example, with “Tailors’ Day”, there is a feeling that people have also suffered to just be together and enjoy entertainment programs. At the same time, there is a slight fear that in September, all this may close again. Also in connection with the events in Ukraine, it seems necessary to live in full blood. That is the reality we live in today.

Imants: – Sometimes it even seems impossible to appreciate it all, because at the moment there are a lot of events. There is a constant process and race all the time. And the pleasant tiredness that followed.

– What is your relationship with the legendary Midsummer Night Limousine?

Imants: – This is a wonderful short story by Māra Svīre, which Jānis Streičs colossally realized in the film. It has survived for more than 40 years and is in our gold fund – one of the best Latvian films of all time. Of course, there are fears that this film will go with our generation, because those who are now seven will not be able to perceive it as we could – even the same Soviet-era lottery phenomenon, when winning a gig similar to getting there. fairy tale.

But there are things that are immortalized in the film – I myself have experienced such family reunions and singing, which were very popular during the Soviet era.

Of course, in film it is hyperbolized, and in art it has to be done to show everything in brighter colors. In all its glory, the edges of the characters found in our Latvian families are visible there – it is the most beautiful. And at the same time – a lot of cool, human moments, at least the reading of Uldis Dumps or Eriks over strawberry furrows.

The film has undeniably preserved its time, and this “canned” is very good, so hopefully it won’t expire so quickly. The fact that it is still relevant is shown by even the quotations that are alive in the nation. My favorite as a francophone person is the fact that the group “Gaujards” got its name from Veronika’s reprimand played by Līga Liepiņa for the name of the French artist Olga Dreģe or Dagnija: “Writes” Gaujards “, pronounces” Gožār “in French!”

Elīna: – It seems to me that our generation is passing on the feeling of a “limousine” to their children, and the popularity of the film will not disappear even now. Although this concert, these songs, the white zigzag may encourage you to look, tell more – continue to bring it to life.

Actors from various theaters will also meet this summer in a concert dedicated to Jānis Streičs’ film Limousine in the Color of Midsummer Night. Elīna Vāne (at the wheel of a motorcycle) and Imants Strads – in the foreground. Also in the picture: Edgars Pujāts (first from the left), Lelde Dreimane, Ēriks Eglija-Grāvele, Ieva Puķe.

Publicity (Matisa Markovsky) photo

– Embodying a movie in a concert might not be easy.

Elīna: – It’s more about feelings. Such a cool, Latvian holiday mood.

Imants: – Raimonds Pauls, of course, and a couple of other songs. Of course, we don’t move on to the stage movie, this is live music, with our own contribution.

– This is also an opportunity for both of you to finally be on the same stage, because you, Imant, have been playing at the Daile Theater for some time now, but Elīna – at the Valmiera Theater, who often visits the Daile Theater during the reconstruction.

Imants: – This season I had a feeling that Elīna is on the stage of Daile Theater more often than I do. (Laughs.)

Elīna: – Now, in the summer, there is a feeling that we are playing with actors from all over the theater. A few days ago, we played “Land of Odessa”, but then some of the actors of the show moved to “Skroderdieniems”, and after that we move to “Limousine in the Color of Midsummer Night” anniversary concerts.

At the moment, there is a feeling that the boundaries between theaters are blurred and we are all actors in one big Latvian theater – not only me and Imants, but also the others.

Here are Lelde Dreimane, Ēriks Eglija, Elīna Bojarkina, former Valmiera theater colleague Kārlis Neimanis and others – we all get into one summer ball, which washes from the city to the city. It’s so good to be together after a long break!

Together with my sisters of Valmiera Theater – Ieva Puķis and Māra Mennika – we play the Silmači trio “Skroderdienās” – Bebeni, Tomuļmāti and Pindacīši. This means that we have already started swaying – in national costumes, with wreaths on our heads. Although Imants has moved to the Daile Theater, I do not feel that he is gone and that it has made any big changes. Especially this summer, we are both more in the car “on suitcases”, which have all the necessary costumes. Such summer gypsies with their own car. (Laughs.)

– Imant, “Skroderdienās” Elīna Tomuļmāti plays in your direction!

Imants: – I would not say so loudly about the director, I am rather the one in charge of the picture, maybe some small adjustments. At the same time, I took the smallest role I thought was Pindaka. Turns out there’s more than I thought! Although he could be said to be such a naughty stickman, he is also the keeper of the house spirit. And at the same time I am a person who arranges and sees from the side.

– And Imants tells you, Elīna, how has one or the other role succeeded when viewed from the side? And you – for him?

Elīna: – It is not always possible to get to Imants’ performances. This is our job, a very dear profession, and everyone has their own schedule. If you succeed, then with the greatest pleasure. But I watch the show as a whole, not just what Imants is doing. Besides, I’m pretty sure of him. Maybe we look at each other with some favor, so a great deal of criticism is probably not possible at all in this case.

Imants: It’s not that we analyze each other’s game from alpha to omega, studying what was good or bad. If it were really catastrophic, I would probably say, but so far it has not happened.

– Do you think that in the daily life of two actors, theater is on your tongue and minds all the time?

Elīna: – It cannot be avoided.

Imants: – In my case, with age, in Elina’s case – with her thriving youth – it becomes clear that it is great and healthy to find friends or people who are not just from the theater community. Sometimes you go out of this theatrical environment. There was a time when we were just in the theater, and it seemed like you hadn’t talked to “normal” people in years. On the other hand – there is a feeling that the family is the whole theater. It already has everything imaginable, because man is man – he does not change – from angels to black sheep.

– The only black woman in your family is the Rottweiler Cuba.

Elīna: – At this time, when we are celebrating all over Latvia, a 24-hour babysitter has been organized for Cuba – my mother. My mother is also happy that she can spend a summer vacation in our home in Valmiera, because otherwise she is from Riga every day.

– During the wedding and at other times in the summer, small concerts, performances, artists, which you invited to please yourself and others, often gathered in the nature concert hall of your two Valmiera home gardens.

Imants: – Yes, we really like it. The house is 90 years old this year, and I would love to continue this. There is one dream concert in mind that I would like to pursue this summer until the end of July. The theater season starts in August, it will be quite serious for both of us, then there will be no time left.

Elīna: – We are not present at the moment, considering the cities listed in the summer planner, but I would like to celebrate the historical anniversary of the house.

– What is the color of your Midsummer night?

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Elīna: – Let’s be on stage and on the way – in Preili and Raiskums! I anticipate that there will be such a pleasant shade of fatigue. Since we do not know what awaits us in the near future, we have decided to take this moment and go on an adventure.

Imants: – My Midsummer night is fiery red. Fireplace, flame. Both of our limousines are black (laughs). For a while we really promised not to go on stage on Midsummer night, but everything changes, we have to live with the times. For us, it is rather a feeling of preparation, performances, rehearsals. This morning, the green beer mug of Tailors’ Day broke. Let’s go for clay and fix it!

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