Eternal Russia is a glance at a few centuries of Russian history. The curator and critic Marina Davydova develops, together with the stage designer and artist Vera Martynov and the composer Vladimir Rannev, a performative, installation-like parkour, which spatially makes accessible the connection between Russian history and the present. The project portrays the very short but bright interlude of the political, artistic, and sexual awakening after the revolution of 1917. Why could these ideas not be implemented in the long run? The piece is an attempt to explain the barbaric change of Soviet socialism, which just ten years after the revolution was transformed into totalitarian dictatorship, skillfully hidden behind Communist slogans. Furthermore, it deals with one hundred years of longing for the pre-revolutionary Russian Empire. An image of the great Russian utopia arises. 


MARINA DAVYDOVA is a theatre critic, historian, and producer. She has held the position of Senior Researcher at the Institute of Art Studies, taught classes on the history of Western European theatre at various universities, and led workshops on theatre criticism at the Russian State University for the Humanities. She is author of “Ende einer Theaterepoche” (2005), a monograph that looks at Russian theatre in the last ten years, and is editor of the book “The History of West European Theatre since Renaissance Time until the End of the XIX Century.” As a critic, she writes for papers like “Iswestja” and in addition serves as chief editor for the magazine “TEATR.” Davydova is artistic director of Moscow’s Net-Festival, writes a regular column for Colta.ru and was, in 2016, in charge of the program at Vienna Festwochen. She has been awarded numerous prizes including the Stanislawski award for best book publication. She developed “Eternal Russia,” her first artistic piece, in cooperation with Vera Martynov.

VERA MARTYNOV served as artistic director of Moscow’s Gogol Centre theatre from 2012 to 2015. Since 2015, she began to work more independently at theatres, museums, and galleries. In 2016, she became the artistic director of the New Space Theatre of Nations. In addition, she is not only a co-founder of the Dmitry Krymov Laboratory, but also serves as its stage and costume designer as well as acting. In 2012 and 2013, she worked at the Robert Wilsons Watermill Center. Martynov received numerous awards, among them the Golden Triga Award of Prague’s Quadrennial, the Edinburgh International Art Festivals Award (together with Dmitry Krymov Laboratory), and the Golden Masque Award for best stage set. Martynov has taught at MHAT School-Studio, the Russian Academy of Theatre Arts (RATI/ GITIS), and the British Higher School of Design in Moscow. “Eternal Russia,” a collaborative work that she developed together with Marina Davydova, is her first work for HAU Hebbel am Ufer.



Commemoration ceremonies for the Russian revolution are not initiated in Moscow but in Berlin. The rooms that Davydova designed together with the artist Vera Martynov and the composer Vladimir Rannev evoke historical catastrophe and open up Utopian escape routes.

Kerstin Holm, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung


An image that shows how inexplicable power has become in Eternal Russia. In only ten performances, small groups were led through this at once complex and illuminating installation - whose significance far exceeds these modest numbers and should soon be shown elsewhere.

Thomas Irmer, Theater der Zeit