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29 Jan, 2010 12:55

Celebrating a master’s birthday – Chekhov turns 150

January 29 marks the 150th anniversary of the birth of one of the world’s greatest playwrights and short-story tellers, the leading light of Russian drama, Anton Chekhov.

The jubilee of the celebrated author of “The Seagull”, “Three Sisters” and “The Cherry Orchard” is being celebrated throughout the world, with some of the largest-scale festivities taking place in Russia, namely in Taganrog, the writer’s city of birth.

President Dmitry Medvedev has laid flowers at the monument to Chekhov in southern Russia. He also met with some of the leading stage directors from Russia and overseas to discuss the playwright’s legacy, as well as theater in general.

“My parents had the whole collection of Chekhov’s works, back in the time when some books were hard to get hold of in the Soviet Union. It so happened that I’ve read everything by Chekhov. I was fist interested by his short comic stories and then switched to more serious novels and plays. I was further amazed when I even started reading Chekhov’s letters, although this genre wasn’t aimed at young people. Frankly speaking, I’m happy I did it then, otherwise I don’t know when else I’d have a chance to do it,” Medvedev said.

Apart from exhibitions and festivals taking place in Chekhov’s motherland on the Sea of Azov, a number of events are currently in full swing in the Russian capital.

The “Days of Chekhov” festival in Moscow features performances based on the writer’s timeless works.

However, one of the most highly-anticipated events of the year is the 9th International Chekhov Festival, which will take place this summer.