Stas Namin told Pozner why he changed his famous surname Mikoyan, and about the role of Armenia in his destiny (VIDEO)

Childhood of Stas Namin

The future creator of the group “Flowers” ​​Stas Namin (real name Anastas Mikoyan) was born in Russia, in the city of Moscow. His father is Alexey Mikoyan, a military pilot, participant in the Great Patriotic War. Therefore, the boy’s childhood passed on the territory of military garrisons in Belarus, Russia (near Murmansk) and East Germany.

Parents of Stas Namin

Mother - Nami Mikoyan (Arutyunova), musician, art critic and writer. She instilled in her son a love of music and art. Famous composers and musicians often visited the house.

In 1957, Stas went to the 74th secondary school in Moscow, but since 1961 he transferred to the Moscow Suvorov School at the request of his father.


At the end of the 1960s, the hippie movement was at the peak of its popularity. Under his influence, Stas Namin decided to create the group “Flowers”. The team consisted of young and talented guys. They immediately began recording songs. In 1973, “Flowers” ​​released flexible records with a total circulation of 7 million pieces. All this was sold out in a few weeks. The team gained enormous popularity among Soviet citizens.

In 1974, the group went on a tour of major cities of the USSR. Everywhere rock musicians were greeted with a bang. However, in 1975 the team ceased to exist. And all because of a serious conflict with the Philharmonic. The USSR Ministry of Culture ordered Namin to disband the group.

First participation in musical groups

At school, he first heard the works of The Beatles and Rolling Stones, which affected his passion for rock music. In 1964, he became a member of the first musical group in his life, “Sorcerers,” created at the Suvorov Military School. In 1967, together with childhood friends and his brother (Alexander), Stas created a new group - Politburo.

Stas Namin in his youth

After starting his studies at the Institute of Foreign Languages ​​in 1969, he became the leader of the then famous musical group “Bliki” among students.

The beginning of a musical journey

Stas was accustomed to music since childhood. When his parents divorced, his mother married for the second time a musicologist, member of the Union of Composers of the USSR V.F. Kukharsky. Babajanyan, Rostropovich, Shostakovich, Schnittke, Khachaturian often visited their home.

Stas created his first musical group while still at the Suvorov Military School with classmates. The guys called the group “Sorcerers” and lasted exactly a year.

When he was already studying at the institute, together with Ordzhonikidze’s friend Grisha and cousin Alik Mikoyan, Namin organized a new team. They came to rehearse in the red corner, where, as was customary at that time, there was a red banner hanging on the wall, and a white bust of Lenin stood on the stage. Among such scenery, they played compositions by the Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix, and “Vladimir Ilyich listened attentively.” The guys decided that with such a composition it would be quite logical to give the group the name “Politburo”. They weren’t afraid to shock anyone, since practically no one knew about their existence anyway, and the musicians didn’t perform on television.

Stas Namin and the group "Flowers"

Influenced by the hippie movement "Children of Flowers", in 1969 Stas Namin created the group "Flowers". They even managed to release a record on the then famous . But due to the dissimilarity of their musical works with the style of Soviet pop, the Tsvety group came under a total ban from the Soviet central media, and then only infrequent compromise recordings were released, which for the first time introduced rock musical elements into Soviet culture. In 1975, there was a conflict between “Flowers” ​​and the Philharmonic, which tried to take away the name from the musicians in order to use it commercially

Stas Namin and the group "Flowers"

Since 1974, the group “Flowers” ​​began touring. Since 1977, due to a ban from the USSR Ministry of Culture (even the name itself was prohibited as “propaganda of Western ideology and hippie ideas”), it was renamed by the participants to the “Stas Namin Group”. While still banned in the USSR, they were able to release several records and regain their former popularity with a new name. Stas Namin and the Flowers Group - Light and Joy Against the backdrop of the 1980 Olympic Thaw, the group began to periodically appear on radio and television channels. At the same time, the author’s album “Hymn to the Sun” was released. But after the conflict with the authorities escalated, they were unable to release even on Melodiya, which hosted them.

The active work of “Flowers” ​​resumed only in 1986, when the famous perestroika began. It was then that they were able to perform for the first time in foreign countries and, until 1990, make a world tour, which had previously been almost fantastic. The group became the first domestic rock band to tour the United States, and then, breaking free, toured the whole world over several years: Eastern and Western Europe, South and North America, Africa, Japan, Australia, etc.

Stas Namin talks about corruption. Interview. But in 1990 the group split. Their activities came to a complete halt.


As a teenager, Stas Namin formed his musical tastes thanks to the popular groups “The Rolling Stones” and “The Beatles”.
The guys organized a group with the magical name “Sorcerers” and lasted one year. The next team was called “Politburo”. The guy graduated from college and decided to continue his studies, choosing foreign languages. He quickly realized that this was not for him, and the musician’s biography changed. In the photo, Stas Namin and the group “Flowers” ​​Stas was attracted to music, so he came up with the idea of ​​​​creating his own group, choosing the beautiful name “Flowers” ​​for it. All creative youth concentrated in the seventies at Moscow State University in the philology department. Namin was easily carried away by any new trend. So once he was in the direction of hippies, then he became close to the Harei Krishna movement. Stas Namin in his youth The group “Flowers” ​​performs at Luzhniki among students and receives first prize. The musicians managed to record their own disc with the most popular musical compositions about a star and flowers with eyes. The records sold seven million copies. A year later, the second disc was released, and the group decided to go on tour. This is how the creative biography of musician Stas Namin began rapidly. In the Soviet Union, no one was allowed to act without permission without the approval of higher management. The team was accused of anti-Soviet propaganda and disbanded. Stas Namin, with a teacher's diploma, did not go to work off the government money invested in his education. A new group was formed, the name of which included the name of the musician. The team began to position itself as a rock band. The group released four albums very quickly and found their true fans. The recordings spread throughout the Soviet Union instantly. The idea of ​​creating the first rock festival belongs to Namin. It took place in Yerevan. A huge number of spectators (70,000) gathered at the cycling track. The festival was held on a grand scale, but Stas was banned from performing concerts in cities.

Having completed directors' courses and having learned a lot from Alexander Mitta and Lev Gumilyov, for the first time Stas Namin produces a video clip for the New Year for a wide audience. This work was again banned; only four years later the project found its fans. The composer begins to compose music for films. His group receives an invitation to “Song of the Year”.

Since perestroika, a lot has changed for the group. “The Stas Namin Group” can tour different countries of the world. The composer decides to provide support to aspiring musicians, poets and artists by creating a special production center. In addition, Stas Namin created his own symphony orchestra and organized an international festival. The event was widely broadcast in 59 countries, and all the money went to help those suffering from drug addiction.

At this time, the group that Namin took under his wing, “Gorky Park,” was actively manifesting itself. The musician invites foreign stars to the USSR. Many now famous Russian singers started with Stas Namin’s group: Alexander Marshal, Igor Sarukhanov, Alexander Malinin.

Stas Namin in the cinema

In 1982, Stas Namin decided to change his field of activity due to the impossibility of continuing a professional musical career, and entered the Higher Courses for Scriptwriters and Directors at the USSR State Committee for Cinematography.
The following year, he became the author of the first video clip in the country for his song “Old New Year”. It was banned from showing due to its obvious political overtones. It was first broadcast only in 1986 in the USA on the MTV channel. Stas Namin’s first experience of filming was “Neskuchny Sad” in 1991. There he acted not only as a producer, but also as a co-author.

Since 1992, he has been producing a series of documentaries called International Geographic. As part of it, the audience was shown such cities and countries as Jerusalem (1992), Thailand (1993), New York (1995), New Mexico (1996), Easter Islands, Tahiti and Bora Bora (1997 ), countries in Africa and South America (2002-2007) and the Amazon (2007).

Stas Namin on the set of the International Geographic program

Also, starting in 1989, several concert films were released, where Stas Namin appeared as a producer and director. Among them are the peace festivals in Luzhniki in 1989, “Rock from the Kremlin” in 1992, 3 parts of the “United World” festival in 1990, 1995 and 1997.

Return to musical activity

Stas Namin, together with his team, was invited to perform in the “Song of the Year” program in 1984. And a year later, participation in the International Students Festival follows. After it was held, the musicians were seriously accused of expressing support for the American government by participating in the program.

During the years of perestroika, a lot changed; the band went on tour for the first time in the USA, followed by concerts around the world.

Namin has the gift of transformation and the ability to adapt to the situation according to the time. This allows him to quickly catch the desired wave. He easily succeeds in various fields of activity. Creates a production center, and then a recording studio. Music and Drama Theater, as well as a modeling agency. In addition, he has his own company that organizes concerts. Groups such as:

  • "Brigade C";
  • "Spleen";
  • "Kalinov Bridge";
  • "Gorky Park".

They achieved popularity thanks to Stas Namin.

Stas Namin Center

In 1987, Stas Namin created the non-governmental organization “Stas Namin Center” in the Green Theater of Gorky Park.
It brought together young and talented musicians, new musical groups (Gorky Park, Moral Code, Kalinov Bridge, Splin), poets, artists and designers. In fact, it was the first production center in Russia. It was in this center that Stas Namin created the Gorky Park group, inventing an image, repertoire and acting as a producer. The group performed at the grand rock festival in Luzhniki in 1989 along with such musicians as Bon Jovi, Motley Crue, Ozzy Osbourne, Scorpions, Cinderella. At first, the center’s activities were completely non-commercial, because the very concept of show business did not yet exist. The Stas Namin Center includes a recording studio, a production center, a concert agency, a design studio, a modeling agency, a rock cafe, a contemporary art gallery, a radio station, a television company and a glossy magazine.

In 1987, Namin created the Moscow Symphony Orchestra, the chief conductor is Konstantin Krimets. In 1997–99, the Moscow Symphony Orchestra recorded more than eighty CDs with music for films, animated films and computer games, which were released in Japan, the USA, China, Austria and England.

Stas Namin Center - organization of concerts in the USSR

And in the 90s of the last century, the first independent tour of a foreign star was Iron Maden, although before that time any concert activity in Russia was handled by the State Concert. In 1991, having become interested in aeronautics, Namin created his first hot air balloon and organized the first hot air balloon festival in Russia on Red Square.

In the second half of the nineties, Stas Namin returned to musical creativity, starting work on several solo albums in different genres - ethno, rock, jazz. The most famous album of guitar improvisations in the art-rock style, Kama Sutra, dedicated to his deceased friend, the famous musician Frank Zappa, was released in 2000.

Also in the nineties, Namin organized several major festivals: “Rock from the Kremlin” (1992), a series of festivals “One World” (1990, 1995, 1997), participated in the organization of the XX Moscow International Film Festival (1997).

Photography, travel, art projects, cinema

Namin began to get interested in photography as a child. In the seventies he took photographs for his band's posters. In the eighties, he took his camera with him on the Flowers world tour, filming in North and South America, Europe, Africa, Australia and Japan. At that time, he did not yet plan to engage in photography professionally; it was rather a desire to preserve the impressions of what he saw. In the nineties, Namin took photographs during expeditions around the world, and also began working in a photo studio. In the 2000s, he began to study fine arts, painting and graphics, and this influenced his worldview in photography. In 2013, at the Frankfurt Book Fair, the State Russian Museum presented Namin’s author’s album of photographs, “The Magic of Venus.” In 2014, Namin’s works participated in an exhibition at the Gallery of Classical Photography along with the best photographers of the country[28].

Having become interested in ballooning in 1992, Namin created his first hot air balloon and organized Russia's first hot air balloon festival on Red Square in Moscow. In 1994, by his order, the first Russian hot air balloon of an unusual shape was designed - “Yellow Submarine”, which was recognized as one of the most popular balloons in the world at the largest hot air balloon festival in New Mexico (USA) and was included in the encyclopedia of the best balloons in the world[ 8].

In 1997, Stas Namin, in a team with Yuri Senkevich, Thor Heyerdahl, Andrei Makarevich, Leonid Yakubovich, Maxim Leonidov and Leonid Yarmolnik, traveled around the world through Easter Island. The team covered 40,000 km, visiting Europe, Africa, South America, New Zealand and Japan. During the trip, 3 films were shot: Yuri Senkevich and Andrei Makarevich created films for their television programs, and Stas Namin - for his series of International Geographic documentaries.

In the late 90s - early 2000s, Namin traveled a lot. Based on the results of numerous trips to Africa, South America, Europe and other parts of the world, he created documentaries that were included in his author’s International Geographic series, where he acted as a director, cameraman and producer. He also created a series of travel documentaries: “Amazing Cuba”, “Northern India”, “Ancient Temples of Armenia”, various video clips, documentary films and an interview film with Ernst Neizvestny[27]. He was the producer of the film Free to Rock (USA) - its presentation took place in Washington: at Georgetown University and the Capitol[29][30].

In the 2000s, Namin began to seriously study various techniques of fine art.[26] In 2006, at the Theater Museum. Bakhrushin's works were presented for the first time - graphics, painting, mixed media, where he experimented with modern computer and other technologies. Throughout all these years, his artistic works have been exhibited in various collections, galleries and museums in Russia and abroad. In June 2014, Namin was elected an honorary member of the Russian Academy of Arts[31][29][32].

Robert De Niro at the Stas Namin Theater of Music and Drama. 2010

Actors of the Stas Namin Theater of Music and Drama after the play “Hair”, dedicated to the 85th anniversary of producer Michael Butler. 2011

Stas Namin Theater

In 1999, the Stas Namin Theater was created - the Moscow Theater of Music and Drama. The beginning was the famous rock musical “Hair,” which was staged for the first time in Russia as a genre. This musical is part of the theater's permanent repertoire. Chamber musical productions based on direction, acting and live music are extremely popular. The most famous production of the theater is probably the rock opera “Jesus Christ Superstar” by E. Webber.

The musical “Hair” at the Stas Namin Theater

In the 2009–2010 season, to mark the tenth anniversary of the theatre, Namin presented a series of premiere performances - the musicals “The Town Musicians of Bremen”, “The Three Musketeers”, “The Picture of Dorian Gray”, “Alice in Wonderland”, “Beatlemania” and musical performances for children “Snowy Queen" and "The Little Prince", Gennady Gladkov's musical "Penelope, or 2+2".


Stas Namin, whose personal life and biography is an example of resourcefulness and dedication to his favorite work, was born in 1951. The boy's relatives were quite famous people in their circle:

Stas Namin in childhood

  • paternal grandfather – political functionary Anastas Ivanovich Mikoyan. From 1922 to 1976 he was at the helm of power in the USSR, being a very significant figure in the Politburo of the country of the Soviets;
  • maternal grandfather - Arutyunov Grigory Andreevich - led Armenia from 1922 to 1957, being secretary of the Communist Party of the republic;
  • paternal grandfather’s brother – Artem Ivanovich Mikoyan. Famous aircraft designer, author of the legendary Mig helicopters;
  • mother – Nami Artemyevna Mikoyan (Arutyunova). Conservatory graduate in violin and piano, musicologist, art critic, writer;
  • stepfather - Vasily Fedosevich Kukharsky. Deputy Minister of Culture of the USSR, who was close friends with Shostakovich and Sviridov;
  • father - Alexey Mikoyan, military pilot, participant in the Great Patriotic War (1941–1945).

Stas's parents

Stas spent his entire early childhood with his parents in military garrisons: the village of Ross in Belarus, the village of Alakurti near Murmansk, and the town of Rechlin in East Germany.

Stas was raised by his mother, introducing her son to music and literature from childhood. D. Shostakovich, A. Khachaturian, M. Rostropovich, L. Kogan, A. Schnittke, G. Kancheli, G. Sviridov and other famous musicians and artists visited the house. Stas's first music teacher was composer Arno Babajanyan.

Interesting: Elena Stepunina: defeated cancer, health status

Since the boy grew up hooligan and rebellious, wanting to be a musician at all costs and stubbornly listening only to the hits of popular Western rock bands, the family decides to send the guy to the Suvorov School.

Stas Namin while studying at the Suvorov Military School

The young rebel studied in this forge of male characters for 7 years. At the same time, his certificate was not the best. Apparently, the gifted young man was able to hold out for so long in a prestigious educational institution solely thanks to his military merits and the authority of his relatives.

Revival of the group "Flowers" by Stas Namin

In 1999, Stas Namin gathered his group “Flowers” ​​for a big concert for the thirtieth anniversary, where everyone who had ever been in the lineup performed.
But this event did not mark the beginning of the group's triumphant return to the stage. The musicians perform as part of the Moscow Theater of Music and Drama, created by Stas. In particular, they took an active part in the musicals “Jesus Christ Superstar” and “Hair”. Stas Namin and the Flowers Group - Summer Evening The group formed its permanent composition only in 2000. It included Oleg Predtechensky (guitar and vocals), Valery Diorditsa (keys and vocals), Alexander Gretsinin (bass guitar and vocals), Yuri Vilnin (guitar only) and Alan Aslamazov (saxophone, keys and vocals). After this, the “Flowers” ​​group began to return to active touring and creative activities. The year 2009 was marked by the release of the double album “Back in the USSR”, which included hits from 1969-1983. The album was released for the band's fortieth anniversary. And a year later, the group began concert activity for the first time in 20 years - first performing in Moscow, then starting regular tours.

2011 was marked by a new album, “Open Your Window,” which included 15 previously unreleased songs from the 1980s, and 2 new songs, “Open Your Window” and “Hymn to the Heroes of Our Time.”

Stas Namin and the group “Flowers” ​​- performance in Crocus with the program “Power of Flowers”

In 2013, the group “Flowers” ​​released two new concert albums at once - “Homo sapiens” and “The Power of Flowers”. And for the group’s forty-fifth anniversary in 2014, “Flowers” ​​planned a big tour of forty-five cities in Russia and abroad.

Stas Namin: The USA is becoming more and more like the USSR

Vladimir Polupanov, AiF: The Tsvety group, which you created, is 50 years old today. Her fate, like yours, was divided into two parts. Both you and your group were actually banned in the USSR and only gained freedom with perestroika. In 1986, you and “Flowers” ​​went to the United States for the first time on a 45-day tour. Has America amazed, surprised, disappointed you? Have you ever planned to stay there for permanent residence?

Stas Namin: It was a tour where we presented the musical “Child of the World”: our and American children, their teacher, singer Lyudmila Senchina , and ak. At the same time, solo rock concerts of the group took place. In total, we toured more than fifteen major cities in America, stopping in Canada. At that time there was not yet a large wave of Russian emigration to the USA; mostly Americans came to our concerts. We were received very well. We have preserved video recordings of many concerts, some are even on Youtube. After the concert in Boston, one of the largest American newspapers, the Boston Globe, wrote: “Stas Namin’s group, the first Soviet rock band to perform in Boston, truly opened our eyes, immediately crushing existing stereotypes.”

In America I then met famous rock musicians. After a concert at the Lime Light rock hall in Manhattan and a press conference at the Hard Rock Cafe on John Lennon's birthday, Yoko Ono invited me to her and John's legendary apartment in the Dakota, where we spent many hours talking about John and his life and creativity. Then Yoko told me about the famous novel Gorky Park, and I had the idea to use this name for my new group, which I was already thinking a lot about at that moment.

In San Francisco we performed with musicians Janis Joplin and other legends, in Santa Barbara with Kenny Loggins , at the UN in New York with Peter Gabriel , after which he invited us to Japan.

America then amazed us in the best human sense. All the people smiled, and those who communicated with us closer in different cities even cried when they parted. It was clear that this was sincere. In those days, there seemed to be an ideal society: people could get settled in hotels without a passport, they just said their name. On domestic flights they didn’t ask for passports either; a ticket was enough. I must say that during my constant contacts with America, visits there and even living there for some time, I noticed a funny, paradoxical situation: over the past thirty years, the Soviet Union turned into Russia and began to move towards a civilized and free America, and the United States , on the contrary, towards the Soviet Union. And now, I would say, in many ways they are more similar to that police bureaucratic Soviet Union than we are.

Be that as it may, it never seriously occurred to me to stay there to live: neither in those days, nor now. There is an anecdote about a Jew who went to the States for permanent residence and immediately asked to return. And when he returned, he applied again to America. They tell him: “You still choose where it’s better.” And he replies: “Both there and there it’s crap, but on the road there’s such service!”

Stas Namin’s group “Flowers” ​​- authors and performers of the songs “We wish you happiness”, “Flowers have eyes”, “My clear little star”, “Honestly speaking”, “Lullaby”, “Don’t”, “More than life”, “The wheels are knocking”, “It’s too early to say goodbye”, “Old piano”, “Summer evening”, “Jurmala”, “I will find”, “Tell me yes”, “After the rain”, “Nostalgia for the present”, “Heroic strength” , “White Ice Floes”, “Light and Joy”, “Let’s Hold Hands”, “Open Your Window”, etc. Created in 1969. Photo: Stas Namin Center

— You have been regularly visiting America for more than thirty years, you have many famous friends there. You recently spoke with Robert De Niro and Sean Penn. What do they think about Russia? Have Americans of this level also received an injection of anti-Russian propaganda?

— In America, just like here, in principle, they separate the people from the political leadership. The American people are one thing, but the political administration is another. Of course, propaganda plays its role both here and here. But I would say that our propaganda is even more humane than theirs, since ours criticizes governments and their policies, and theirs - Russians in principle. This probably affects the poorly educated masses, but if we talk about the intelligentsia, and even more so about the outstanding people you are asking about, then, of course, they understand everything correctly.

— The group “Flowers” ​​was created by you in 1969. And, although you still managed to release small records from time to time on Melodiya, release your first solo album and get on radio and TV, and then only for a short time, you managed only ten years later, in 1980. Soviet censorship did not allow you to do is this before? You weren’t rebels and didn’t sing anti-Soviet songs.

— It’s probably hard for you to imagine how everything happened in those days and what real life was like. In a nutshell, in the country, in addition to symphonic music, there was only pop music in the “Soviet song” genre. When we started, there was no Pugacheva, no “Pesnyary”, no Tukhmanov, and Okudzhava, Vysotsky and, even more so, Galich were banned. And the rock music that we were into back then was not taken seriously by anyone. Yes, we ourselves did not plan to seriously study it and become professional musicians. In the 70s, there already existed a huge number of student and other independent rock groups, and it was an unknown and not very interesting subculture to the Soviet people and the authorities, nothing more. It was just an accident that we made the record at all. We, together with two other ensembles - “Lingua” from Inyaz and “Trio Linnik” from Moscow State University - having become laureates of some student festival, received an incentive: the right to release flexible records on “Melodiya”. I took this opportunity very seriously and, realizing that the music that we actually played then would not be allowed by the artistic council, I decided to find a style that would simultaneously carry rock energy and be so professional from the point of view of music, that it would be difficult to find fault. We knew how to sing and play well then and stood out among others, but I invited experienced professional musicians to join our rock trio, and together we created what the whole country heard on our first record. It unexpectedly sold out in huge numbers, and, having received millions (we received nothing from the circulation), soon invited us to release a second one. Well, then a whole epic began, which is more or less known to everyone.

Stas Namin. Photo: Stas Namin Center/ Alena Polosukhina

— Why did you take a creative pseudonym?

- My family name - Mikoyan - was associated at that time with a completely different activity, because my whole family - grandfather, father, and uncles - were engaged in completely different things. Grandfather, as you probably know, was a political figure in the USSR in the period from Ilyich Lenin to Ilyich Brezhnev and is known not only for creating the food industry in the country, being involved in Lend-Lease and providing the home front during the war. He gained fame and respect throughout the world after he managed to “resolve” the Caribbean conflict between Castro, Kennedy and Khrushchev in 1962, thereby preventing World War III. My uncles and father were military pilots who went through the war. My great-uncle is an aircraft designer who created MiG aircraft. So it was natural that in my musical career I decided to take a pseudonym that had nothing to do with all this.

My mom's name is Nami, so the nickname Namin simply means that I am my mom's. But the pseudonym was valid only for creative activities; I did not change my last name in my passport, because I did not intend to be a musician in life.

— Your song “We wish you happiness” is probably the only one that has not lost popularity for more than thirty-five years. I remember how you recently performed it on Channel One and Yuri Antonov, Joseph Kobzon, Alexander Rosenbaum, Igor Matvienko and several dozen other pop stars of the country sang along with you. I don't know another song that is sung by both composers and performers. Tell the story of its creation.

— I wrote it in 1982. It was a rather difficult period for me, because after the “Yerevan-81” festival I organized and the articles published after that in Time and Stern magazines, both me and the group were again completely banned and expelled from everywhere. And she even stopped recording us, despite the fact that at that time we had innocent romantic songs, like the Beatles in their first albums. I decided to write a song that would formulate my attitude towards life and towards people and complete this romantic stage of ours. And one morning (or even in a dream, I don’t remember) a melody came to my mind. Getting out of bed, I took the guitar, played it and literally in half an hour I came up with the words for the chorus. Having recorded them, I thought that if I was the author of both the text and the music, then the song would absolutely never be missed anywhere, because then you had to be a member of the Union of Writers or Composers, or at least a co-author of such a member. Then there was no longer the poet Vladimir Kharitonov , with whom I was very friendly and with whom I had written all the songs before. I called Igor Shaferan , whom I also knew very well. He happily responded to my proposal and literally in a few days wrote all the choruses, correcting a few words in the chorus. The song took shape, and we immediately started playing it in concerts in the periphery, because we were not allowed into big cities. Having heard it for the first time, the audience immediately began to sing along with us, it was obvious that it was a hit, but to what extent, of course, I could not imagine.

However, it took a long time to publish it. It saw the light of day thanks to Shaferan, who received permission to record it for his own album, but “Flowers” ​​were never able to release it in the USSR. But even after its release on his record, the song was banned from the media. The artistic councils did not allow her to appear on radio and television. In 1983, the girl editors of “Song of the Year” found her and decided to offer her in the program. I, like all the authors, was called to the artistic council, and the editor-in-chief of the Main Editorial Board of Music Programs of Central Television, Lyudmila Krenkel, suddenly asked publicly: “Where did you find such a song? This is a disgrace to our Soviet stage!” And the song was again thrown out of the program. She first somehow appeared on television only a year later, in a New Year's program in 1984, and very quickly became popular in the country. That is, in fact, it was banned for three years.

A few months after the television premiere, around March 1985, David Woolcombe, the producer of the English children's play Child of the World, found me and asked permission to take her into his musical. He planned to come with the performance to the Festival of Youth and Students in Moscow. As a result, we made a joint international project of the children's musical play “Child of the World” with the group “Flowers”, performed at the festival, and in 1986 the group and the play went on a tour of America. Before this, a Soviet-American teleconference took place entitled “We wish you happiness.” The song became known in America, and it was sung there in many schools in English. Then somehow it spread to other countries and I was surprised to hear children in India singing it in Hindi.

One of the reasons why television eventually accepted the song was probably that I completely remade the arrangement: I made it in the pop style that was then accepted in the USSR. I asked my friend, the magnificent musician and arranger of “Flowers” ​​Vladimir Belousov, about this. The song became popular precisely in his arrangement. We performed the original version of the song - as I originally wrote it - only at our fortieth anniversary in 2010.

Above: The historic Luzhniki World Music Festival, featuring international rock stars from the US, UK, Germany and Russia, ushering in a new era of free Russia. Moscow, 1989. Below: Jon Bon Jovi and Richard Sambora presenting the organizer Photo: Stas Namin Center

— Will the semicentenary anniversary of the “Flowers” ​​group be celebrated in any way?

— Yes, we are planning a big concert in November with the participation of our friends: Russian and foreign stars. Of course, as always, we will sing all our famous hits and new songs, as well as famous world hits along with the guests. Judging by how everything is shaping up, the concert will be very interesting in content and form. I don't want to reveal secrets, but there will be unexpected surprises. Have you seen our concerts “Flowers-40”, “Homo sapiens” and “The Power of Flowers” ​​(they are on Youtube)? This concert should be even cooler! Two tribute albums are also being prepared. One will feature “Flowers” ​​songs performed by Russian rock stars, and the other will also contain our songs, but in English, performed by foreign rock stars. And besides, the same one where we started half a century ago released a unique collector’s edition of twelve vinyl albums in two volumes, which included almost all of our work.

held the first international rock festival at Luzhniki, which included stars from the USA, Great Britain, Germany and Russia: Bon Jovi, Ozzy Osbourne, Mötley Crüe , Scorpions , Garik Sukachev, Gorky Park ", etc. There was either before or after him The response from this event around the world was enormous. Are the records preserved? Was this filmed by Soviet television?

— Soviet TV didn’t film it, but MTV did, and both days of the festival were broadcast to 59 countries around the world. I organized this festival with my friend Doc McGee . This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of this festival, and a film is being prepared about it in the UK, and programs are being written and filmed about it here and in the West. To be honest, I wasn’t sure until the last day that the festival would work, because perestroika freedoms had not yet fully worked. And the mentality of the Soviet regime could stop this project at any second. Thank God that everything went well and without incident. I think it is no coincidence that both here and in the West they called it the Russian Woodstock, because it broke many existing prohibitions and boundaries.

— You wrote Russian lyrics for the Scorpions song “Wind of Change.” Why didn't you write the English text right away? After all, you speak English well. Tell us about the history of this song.

— First, Klaus Meine (vocalist and songwriter - Ed.) wrote English lyrics, and then contacted me - I was temporarily living in New York at the time - and asked me to write Russian lyrics and sing it to the soundtrack recorded by Scorpions. I no longer studied music in Russia and said that I did not have time for this. Then they rented a studio for me at night and said: well, you’re not busy at night. Well, of course, I wrote the lyrics, which were almost a word-for-word translation of his English, sang it and sent it to them. By the way, at the “Flowers-40” concert we sang it in Russian and English in our own arrangement.

— You were the creator and producer of Gorky Park, the only Russian group in the history of which had great success in the West. What is the secret of this success?

- It's a long story. And I first started telling it only recently, thirty years later. During this time, many rumors, legends and myths appeared about this. But the real history of the Gorky Park group, with facts, documents and interviews with famous musicians who were nearby at that time, and the musicians of the group itself, is presented on the official website of the group In a nutshell, during the tour of the group “Flowers” ​​in the States in 1986, I decided to create a new group for export. I came up with a name and, returning to Moscow, together with the artist Pavel Shegeryan, created the GP logo in the form of a hammer and sickle. Nikolai Noskov as a soloist They sat in the studio of our Center for two years, working on repertoire and demo recordings. And at that time I traveled around the States and looked for partners who could help with promotion. When I succeeded in all this, I signed a direct contract with Polygram to release the group's first album. Thanks to the Moscow rock festival, the whole world learned about the group, and then I sent Gorky Park on tour to America.

While in the States, the band's guitarist convinced the musicians to leave me and stay in America. Kolya Noskov then returned to Moscow, and the rest of the guys, illegally using the name that belonged to our Center, tried to continue their careers. In fact, it was no longer the Gorky Park group that I created. As a result, having suffered a fiasco, they returned to Moscow. Their song “Moscow Calling,” which is not known anywhere else in the world, became popular here. The Gorky Park group existed for three and a half years, that is, from 1987 to mid-1990. It’s a pity that it fell apart.

— Today, despite the fact that a lot of new rock music is being released, rock has still lost its position to hip-hop. Playing rock is not as fashionable as it was 30-40 years ago. Do you think rock music will ever become as popular as it was in the sixties, seventies and eighties?

— In principle, I myself stopped being interested in rock music a long time ago. But I see that the relevance of this genre has disappeared. This doesn't mean there aren't talented musicians. It’s just that the uniqueness of rock music was probably that at some point it became the mouthpiece of self-expression of humanity. But it gradually turned into entertaining pop culture.

— Yuri Shevchuk, in a conversation with me, said that there is a “non-creative atmosphere” in the country today. But in the sixties and seventies it was even more uncreative. And it was during these years that a huge number of rock bands were born in the Soviet Union. If we approach it from Shevchuk’s point of view, have there ever been times in our country that can generally be called “creative”?!

— I believe that creativity has nothing to do with the external environment. For example, Lev Gumilyov wrote several of his famous studies in prison, Olivier Messiaen created “Quartet for the End of Time” in a concentration camp, etc.

The Stas Namin Theater of Music and Drama was created in 1999 in the Green Theater of Gorky Park. His repertoire includes more than 20 performances. Photo: Stas Namin Center

— Your theater also has an anniversary this year: twenty years. What new productions are running in your theater today?

— You probably remember that twenty years ago we started with the canonical versions of the legendary American musical “Hair” and the legendary rock opera “Jesus Christ Superstar.” Over the first fifteen years, the theater created a repertoire that included performances from almost all existing theatrical genres, and brought up a unique universal troupe, where all the actors play, sing and dance equally professionally. This gave us the opportunity to find not only our own style, which appeared from the very first productions, but also our own theatrical language, based on a symbiosis of genres: acting, choreography and vocals.

In recent years, the theater has hosted such performances as “Victory over the Sun,” a reconstruction of the 1913 avant-garde opera staged to mark the centenary of Kazimir Malevich’s famous “Black Square.” The play was presented at the most iconic European venues: Basel (Switzerland), Paris (France), Ravenna (Italy), Thessaloniki (Greece) and other international theater festivals. It received high praise from critics and art critics. Also the performances “Cosmos” based on the stories of V. Shukshin , “Tenant of the Peaks” with poems by Velimir Khlebnikov and music by the group “Auktsion” and Alexey Khvostenko, “New York. 80s. We!" based on the memoirs and with the participation of the artist Mikhail Shemyakin, “Unbearably Long Embraces” based on the play by Ivan Vyrypaev, “Breath of Time” by poet-rapper Oleg Gruz, vocal and choreographic dramatic composition “S-Quark” based on my new symphony. And the musicals that I wrote for children - “The Snow Queen” and “The Little Prince” - have found new life thanks to the introduction of augmented reality technology: live acting takes place in the space of a dome video projection. We have a children's theater studio at the theater, which has become quite popular. All my friends bring their children to it.

— You have no musical education. Do not consider the piano lessons given to you by Arno Babajanyan as a fundamental education. What is the role of music universities in your case? Have you ever felt like you lacked musical education?

— If we talk about the music that I was interested in then, then education is not necessary. For example, Lennon, McCartney, and Harrison had no musical education at all, like the musicians The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and many others. Now, if I played in VIA, then, of course, they would demand a diploma from me. But I hope you understand the difference between rock groups created “on the street”, such as “Flowers”, “Time Machine”, “Aquarium”, “Resurrection”, etc., and those officially created at the VIA “Gems” philharmonic societies, “Flame”, “Blue Guitars”, “Jolly Guys”, etc. Now, unfortunately, few people understand this difference. The difference between us is fundamental, as between Komsomol leaders and dissidents.

But over many years of constant music study, of course, practice did its job, and, in addition to the elementary music school, which I graduated from at the Suvorov Military School, and, of course, lessons with Arno Babajanyan , I learned a lot more.

I only became aware of the real lack of musical education when I started studying symphonic music. It is truly impossible without a fundamental classical musical education to thoroughly know all the instruments of the orchestra and write all the arrangements yourself. Therefore, when creating symphonic works, I always invite arrangers with whom I work together. To work on the arrangement of the symphony “Centuria S-Quark”, which I wrote several years ago, I invited my friend Sasha Slizunov , who was with me in “Flowers” ​​from the very beginning. He participated in the recording of our first record and further, right up to the “Hymn to the Sun” disc. He graduated from the Moscow State Conservatory in arrangement and was Alfred Schnittke's . He and I understand each other perfectly. In recent years he has been the musical director of our theater.

— Your symphony “Centuria S-Quark” was recorded by the London Symphony Orchestra, and the Russian National Orchestra conducted by Mikhail Pletnev performed it in the Great Hall of the Conservatory. How did your passion for symphonic music begin?

A. Khachaturian, M. Rostropovich, L. Kogan, A. Schnittke, G. Kancheli, G. Sviridov visited our house, and my first music teacher, as I already said , was a friend of our family, composer Arno Babajanyan. Already when I was studying rock music and became friends with Frank Zappa, who was also known for his symphonic works, I thought about trying myself in this field.

When I formed a symphony orchestra in 1989 and we toured the UK with the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO), I saw that symphonic music was being embraced by rock and roll audiences. Then I tried to write small three-minute symphonic sketches, which turned into a suite. At first there were five parts, and later I added three more. Today my suite “Autumn in St. Petersburg” is performed a lot, and such famous pianists as Boris Berezovsky and Ratko Delorko have created piano versions of it. But the idea of ​​the symphony would never have been realized if not for the help of the unique musician and conductor Ogan Duryan , who became the conductor of our symphony orchestra in the early 2000s. As a result, the London Symphony Orchestra agreed to record the symphony I wrote in 2020, to my surprise. Together with Sasha Slizunov, who helped me with the arrangement, we went to London, to the famous Abbey Road studio, and recorded it in two days. There is a short film about how it happened on Youtube.

The premiere of Stas Namin's symphony “Centuria S-Quark” performed by the Russian National Symphony Orchestra (conductor Mikhail Pletnev) took place in the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory and was shown on the TV channel “Russia - Culture”. April 2020 Photo: Stas Namin Center

Then I showed the symphony to the famous musician and conductor Mikhail Pletnev . He became interested and offered to perform it in his own version, which was a special honor for me. Recently, the Anglo-American company Navona Records released a recording of the London Orchestra, and several very serious reviews have already been published from the world's leading musicologists.

— You also make films. The Russian premiere of the sensational film “Free to Rock” in America was presented the summer before last at the Moscow Film Festival. Can you tell us about this film of yours?

— All my life I dreamed of doing something in cinema. And even in the early eighties he graduated from the Higher Directing Courses. At the same time, I shot the first video clip in the USSR, which was banned here, but was shown in 1986 on MTV during my tour with “Flowers” ​​in the USA. But I started getting involved in cinema seriously only in the 2000s.

Jim Brown (four-time Emmy Award winner – Ed.) and I worked on the film “Free to Rock” for about ten years. It was indeed a serious and difficult work, since both world rock stars and famous politicians took part in it, including the presidents of the USSR and the USA: Mikhail Gorbachev and Jimmy Carter . This is a film about how rock music helped stop the Cold War and destroy the Iron Curtain. The film turned out to be truly fundamental; the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Grammy Museum took part in its creation.

Documentary film “Free to Rock”, created by Jim Brown, Stas Namin and others in collaboration with the Grammy Museum and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. It had its world premiere on PBS in 2017 and was released on DVD in the United States in 2020. Photo: Stas Namin Center

-What else did you film?

- Also with Jim Brown and my son Artem - he is a director and cameraman - I shot the film “Real Cuba”, which was presented and highly appreciated at several international film festivals (Cuba, USA, etc.). With Artyom, we made documentaries “Ancient Temples of Armenia” with the participation of Catholicos Karekin II and “Conversation with an Unknown”. This is the last interview with sculptor Ernst Neizvestny.

— A couple of years ago, your personal exhibition of painting and graphics took place at the Academy of Arts, and the year before that you were elected an honorary academician. At the vernissage, such eminent artists as Shemyakin, Rukavishnikov, Tsereteli, Frangulyan spoke about you and your professionalism as an artist. How long have you been painting?

— I have been seriously engaged in painting and graphics for more than fifteen years. In 2006, at the Theater Museum. Bakhrushin for the first time presented several of my first works: graphic and painting works, mixed media, where I experimented with modern computer and other technologies. My works have been exhibited in various galleries and museums in Russia and abroad. In recent years, I have painted a series of portraits called “Inside Out” and a series of works dedicated to Armenia.

— Are any of your children, besides Artem, involved in creativity? What professions did they end up choosing?

- I have three children: the eldest daughter Maria, who has already given me three granddaughters, and two sons - Artem, whom I have already mentioned, and the youngest Anastas. All three, from my point of view, have a very creative approach to life, and this is the main thing in whatever they do.

The opening of a personal exhibition of painting and graphics by Stas Namin at the Russian Academy of Arts is presented by artists Zurab Tsereteli, Georgy Frangulyan, Alexander Rukavishnikov, Mikhail Shemyakin and others. 2020. Photo: Stas Namin Center

Biographical information: Stas Namin is a musician, composer, producer, artist and photographer, theater and film director. Born on November 8, 1951 in Moscow.

Creator of the legendary group "Flowers", the group "Gorky Park", author of music for films and theatrical productions, symphonic music. Author of ethnic sketches recorded with Djivan Gasparyan, Sergei Starostin, Krishna Prevost. One of the few Russian musicians who masters the ancient Indian instrument sitar.

The founder of the country's first private media - SNC television and radio - which introduced Soviet viewers and listeners to new forms of broadcasting, without censorship and decades-old cliches. Creator of the glossy magazine "Stas". The founder of the first record company that released banned Soviet groups ( from Grebenshchikov’s “Aquarium” and Tsoi’s “Kino” to Sukachev’s “Brigade S” and Shevchuk’s “DDT” ) and created serious competition for the Soviet monopolist: , which at one time sold millions of copies of the group’s records “ Flowers". He also founded the first modeling agency, where the famous supermodel Tatyana Sorokko began her career, the fashion theater (Yulia Dalakyan), the design studio and production center SNC, from which came “Brigade S”, “Moral Code”, “Kalinov Most”, “Splin” and a lot others. He held the first rock festivals in the country, including the Moscow Peace Festival at Luzhniki (1989), “Rock from the Kremlin” (1991), a series of festivals “One World” and others. He created a theater of music and drama, which is already famous in the world after successful tours in America and Europe.

Personal life of Stas Namin

Stas Namin had three official marriages.
His first wife, Anna, is currently the director of his production center and is in charge of all financial matters. From her he has a daughter, Masha (1977). It was Maria who gave him his granddaughter Asya. The singer’s second wife is the famous singer and beauty Lyudmila Senchina. This marriage lasted seven years.

Stas Namin and Lyudmila Senchina

Stas's current wife, Galina, has been by his side for 25 years. Together with her, Namin accepted her son Roma (b. 1983) from his first marriage. Their common child, Artem, appeared much later - in 1993.

Stas Namin with his wife Galina
Today, in addition to performing, Stas Namin is involved in producing and organizing various festivals, both film and music, including various international ones. In addition, he manages to run his own modeling agency, artistic clubs and restaurants. He also took part in charitable activities more than once.

Personal life

Stas Namin married Anna Isaeva in the mid-70s, with whom he had a daughter, Maria, in 1977. When the girl was 2 years old, the family broke up, but Stas and Anna maintained friendly relations. Now the ex-wife works as a commercial director at the Stas Namin Center.

The rocker's second wife was singer Lyudmila Senchina. But, since the wife lived in St. Petersburg and had no intention of moving to Moscow, the union did not last long.

The stately singer (Stas’s height is 174 cm, weight is 65 kg) with bright charisma has always attracted the attention of the opposite sex. In the mid-80s, Namin met Galina, whose son Roman was growing up at that time. After a long courtship, she agreed to the musician’s proposal to become his wife.

Since then, the singer’s personal life has not changed. In 1993, his wife gave Stas a son, Artem, who is now engaged in painting. He received his education at New York University (NYU) at the Tisch School of the Arts.

His exhibitions are held at the contemporary art fair "Art Moscow", at the Russian Museum, in museums and galleries in Russia and abroad. Artem Mikoyan became the youngest author presented in the catalog “Abstraction in Russia. XX century".

With his third wife, Galina. Together for more than 25 years. Published by Ivan Manilov Thursday, November 8, 2020

Stas Namin and his wife Galina
Roman graduated from medical school, but did not work in their specialty. Namin has a granddaughter Asya from her eldest daughter Maria. The musician's children are friends with each other.

Stas Namin loves to travel; visiting Armenia gives him special joy. An Armenian by nationality and upbringing, the musician values ​​the time he spends in the homeland of his ancestors. The country's creative intelligentsia always gives the rock musician a warm welcome.

Back in Soviet times, the artist created the non-state charitable foundation “Children of Armenia”, the purpose of which was to help those affected by the earthquake in Spitak.

( 2 ratings, average 4.5 out of 5 )
Did you like the article? Share with friends:
For any suggestions regarding the site: [email protected]
Для любых предложений по сайту: [email protected]