ВЫПУСКНИКИ – О СВОЁМ СТУДИЙНОМ ОПЫТЕ И О СЕБЕ

 

     Of all the teachers I have ever had, Nina Goldmakher is one of the very few who was able to communicate to her students a sense of the *beauty* and *excellence* of art - two qualities that have all but lost their value in the mainstream humanities curriculum. She showed us how to read the literature in our parents' language carefully and critically, but more than that she encouraged us to love it and cherish it unabashedly, and for that I am most grateful.

       P.L.R., class of 1998; Harvard graduate                                                                                                                                                                                                       

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     As I said at graduation, I literally cannot imagine who I would be without Nina and her studio. It has changed not only my life but also myself - in every way for the better. Some of my most cherished memories of high school and middle school have to do with Nina, her studio, and the friends I made there. I learned not only about Russia, Russian literature, and the Russian language - Nina's studio is also a lesson in life. I sincerely envy anyone who still has this experience ahead of them, instead of behind. I urge everyone unreservedly to attend.

       Ilya Lozovsky, class of 2002; Tufts graduate                                                                                          

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----- Original Message -----
From: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
To: russianstudio@comcast.net
Sent:
Wednesday, September 08, 2004 6:58 PM
Subject: just a thought


>Dear Nina,

>I think three years ago was the first time you told our class that your graduates were begging you to let them stay for another year. I remember how I, along with the rest of the class, laughed at the idea and groaned at the over-load of homework for the week. Suddenly I find myself understanding how those graduates felt. I'd give a lot now to start the class all over again, or simply continue it where we stopped. I regret every time that I skipped homework and missed an opportunity to read more. I look at myself now, and yes I'm reading, but nowhere near as much as I did during the course, and completely different literature. I keep noticing how things are missing from my life, and now that I'm putting together a new schedule for the school year, it's so strange to me that for the first time in seven years Russian literature isn't in it. Someday, probably someday soon, I'll be able to formulate a more accurate letter of how I feel about the last seven years of my life, about the things I've read, the things I've learned about myself and the world, and the reason behind it all. But for now, I wanted to say thank you. Thank you for all that you've given me, the 15 other people that graduated with me, and the classes before. Thank you for continuing to teach, and giving the opportunities for kids to learn about the many characters within themselves. If you do ever reconsider starting a class for graduates, I hope I'll be one of the first you call.

>Yours, Lyusha

      Leah Goldberger, class of 2004; BHS graduate

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Дорогая Нина!

Расставаясь со Студией, хочу поблагодарить Вас от всей души. Вы и Миша, ваша забота и энергия, безумно помогли мне не потеряться в новой обстановке, а заодно показали незабываемые и важные произведения, многие из которых в России вообще не учат, а главное -- как нужно читать и играть их. Помню недоумевающие лица родственников и знакомых, слышавших мои позитивные высказывания об этой полузабытой грозе советского школьника, "Войне и Мире".  Да что там: перечислять сейчас все, за что я должен Вам сказать спасибо -- все равно, что играть симфонию по одному инструменту за раз.

Пожалуйста, не убирайте меня совсем из своего списка e-mail'ов, мне по-прежнему интересно все, что происходит в Студии. Мой самый театральный поклон Мише и самый доброжелательный привет всем моим бывшим одноклассникам.

      Женя Серебряный, class of 2006; Yale undergraduate   

   

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----- Original Message -----

From: "Vera Belitsky" <xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx >

To: "Russian Studio" <russianstudio@comcast.net>

Sent: Thursday, April 14, 2005 12:54 PM

Subject: new topiс

 

> Nina,
> On a lighter conversation topic, I just received my first A+ on a paper at Tufts!

> It happens to be a paper analyzing poetry, and the teacher was surprised at my skill, so thank you!

> The roots of your literary education, it turns out, are very deep.
> tseluyu,
> Vera

         Vera Belitsky, class of 2002, Tufts graduate

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Out of the 5 years that I attended Nina's class 3 were spent driving back and forth from Worcester.There was never a question of too much time spent in the car or missing my favorite TV shows when we had to leave early due to traffic. Fridays were Russian class days, and I refused to miss them. It has been over 2 years since I last had to take a quiz on War and Peace or recite a poem but I can still find symbolism in the densest of Tolstoy texts and Master and Margarita now has a permanent place on my desk in college…

Svetlana, class of 2002, UMASS graduate

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----- Original Message -----
From: "Olga V Bichko"
To: "Russian Studio" < russianstudio@comcast.net >
Sent:
Thursday, November 04, 2004 3:12 AM
Subject: Hello!
> Hi Nina,
> How are you? I'm doing great! …school is wonderful! I love all my classes and professors.  I joined the Russian Club and we just had a Poetry Night. I was so excited! I didn't realize how much I missed reciting Russian poetry. I read three Tsvetaeva poems and everyone in the club was amazed! They all wanted to know how I learned to read with such emotion and such good pronunciation and with such a "stage voice"! I said it was very simple- I had a great teacher :)  Now they asked me to become one of the leaders of the club and I'm helping plan and organize events.  How are things with your new class?  I hope everything is going great!

> Until next time
> Olya

           Olya Bichko, class of 2004; NYU graduate

 


          Looking back at my school years, the Russian Literature and Drama Studio is something whose worth I never once second-guessed or doubted. I always looked forward to its classes, and those two-hour sessions were the highlights of my week. It was educational, it was interesting, and, thanks to Nina, it was unbelievably enjoyable.

          I started attending the class when I was ten and from the first day, I was impressed by Nina’s knowledge of the minutiae of the subject while remaining open-minded.  She had a strong opinion about every book, poem, or essay that we read, but she still encouraged us to form our own views on every issue. I still remember our many discussions about the depth of Tolstoy’s or Dostoevsky’s characters. I remember the heated debate on whether or not a person like Raskolnikov could exist in the real world, I still disagree with Nina, and the majority of my class, but it was one of the best arguments of which I have ever been a part.

          In my first year with the studio, I was told that we were putting on a performance. I was terrified of the stage and public speaking in general, but I still signed up for as small a part as could be given to me, which was Anuchkin in a scene from The Marriage by Gogol; learned my lines; and prayed that I would not do something foolish. The production was incredibly entertaining, and I continued acting. My stage fright and fear of public speaking gradually disappeared and I started getting larger parts, finishing my studio acting career with my favorite part of Khlestakov in the Inspector General. I grew to love theater. Even now, in college, I continue to perform in theater. In my college courses, I completed a great many class presentations relying on the skills gained from the studio stage director Michael Redko.

          Lastly and, in my opinion, most importantly, Nina becomes the friend of every one of her students, offering advice and thoughts beyond the class walls and affecting her students for years after they graduate her class.  I speak Russian at home and even try to get my little brother to do the same. I have continued reading in Russian, and I still miss Nina’s classes and concerts. I must say that this class is one of the most worthwhile and valuable commitments that I ever made.

          Yura Podpaly, class of 2002, MIT graduate

 


As children grow up in the world of today, they seem to elude and forget their cultural past. The Russian Studio has allowed me to truly understand and dwell into classics that have shaped so much of intellect and values that my parents have, and always tried to instill in me. Initially joining the Russian Studio was my parents' undertaking which I dreaded. Only one and the first class was enough for me to personally fall in love with the concept...

The personal relationship that Nina encourages with her students truly identifies her passion and excitement to teach. “Aunt Nina?” I said, as I raised my hand the first class of attendance. The response was shocking. She encouraged me to speak to her on a first name basis. This allowed for interaction that praised mutual respect and understanding. We as students of the studio were not lectured -  we were taught, in the ideal understanding of the word. As years go by since my graduation I can still remember all of the insights that I received into the literature as well as the culture that I grew up in.

The Russian Studio is not a place to go or join, it is a body on its own that needs to be experienced. Lectures, discussions and re-enactments transcend through time... “Vse schasliviye semyi pohozhi drug na druga, kazhdaya neschaslivaya semya neschasliva po-svoemu.” Lev Tolstoy. The Russian Studio and Nina have definitely made the families of the participating students happy and almost alike. Those that would consciously choose not to join will be forever unhappy and never fill a cultural void.

Mikhail Grinberg, class of 2000; UMASS graduate

 

 

Nina’s Russian literature studio was a remarkable experience; it exposed me to various works of great literature and provided me with fascinating discussions on the serious topics explored. Nina has done something phenomenal by bringing together bright and interested students and taking them through generations of literature... I have personally benefited from Nina’s class in more ways and in more depth then from all of my public education in Newton. The lack of meaningful philosophical and moral discussion in public schools is more then counterbalanced by Nina’s vibrant and stimulating pedagogical style. Nina’s studio, through its artistic and intellectual focus, elevates and develops young minds. I am very grateful to have enjoyed this experience and can only give it my highest recommendations.

Iosif Gershteyn, class of 2004; Brandeis student

 

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