International Nonverbal Theatre Initiative

International Nonverbal Theatre Initiative

A Joint Project of the World-Wide Nonverbal Theatres.

International Nonverbal Theatre Initiative

Rishat Valitov


International Nonverbal Theatre Initiative
International Nonverbal Theatre Initiative

International Nonverbal Theatre Initiative Network
Global management & artistic Coordinator

Rishat Valitov

artistic background before Shkidy

Rishat Valitov

"Shkidy Theatre" (RUSSIA)

Shkidy is a Russian "New Non-Verbal Drama" theatre-studio company, was established during the Soviet era by Tatiana Zbyshevskaia and Rishat Valitov.

These young actors were running a well-established and critically acclaimed youth theatre, to which they added the art of philosophical pantomime and the comedy of absurdity.

In 1985, while Mr. Valitov was studying acting, sound, and light design at the College of Fine Arts in Tashkent, he met three other mimes, and they formed a group known as Birds from the South.

This ensemble started touring extensively throughout Europe and the United States, resulting in several prestigious awards.
During a tour of Germany and Russia, the company produced a show called Ragtime for Clowns, which was awarded a grand prize at the Recklinghausen Festival in Germany.

After producing Clomadeus, a play with a much darker, idiosyncratic nature, they decided to expand beyond the confines of Youth Theatre.

In 1996, Shkidy was established in St. Petersburg. From 1996 through 2005, the company released nine performances, one of which is the current Starry Story.

The troupe has won many theatrical and festival competitions in Europe, Asia and Russia. Theatre Shkidy combines poetic poignancy, visual beauty, and philosophical art, resulting in a lyrical, beautifully crafted, and stunning performance.

"The Evening Saint-Petersburg"

Starry Story

Starry Story, first performed in 2000, is a cheerful yet philosophical story dedicated to famous actors in world history — the "starry" actors of the past.

A pioneer in the new Theatre of "Nonverbal Drama", theatre Shkidy is rooted in the rich Russian theatrical and literary traditions of Stanislavsky, Meyerhold , Mikhail Chekhov, and Dostoevsky. Based in these rich traditions, Shkidy creates a theatrical experience that infuses absurd comedy with physical theatre: commedia dell'arte and clown-mime with theatrical impressionism.

Please find information on theatre Shkidy and Starry Story attached here as "Introduction_to_Shkidy.pdf" file.

The Starry Story veers sharply between sentimentality and solemnity—through the ability of theatre to send audience into an environment of wonder, forcefully and creatively striking people senses.

The play combines intellectual content and side-splitting humor, with a lyrical, compassionate theme. Starry Story is a magical theatrical experience that melds the unbridled hilarity and unexpected poignancy of mime with awe-inspiring visual images and fantasy.

Starry Story has elements of the absurd that appear as reality which then are shown to be nonsense. This family show allows the audience to escape today's world and return to innocent perspectives through an abundance of emotions, movement and spectacular imagery.

Starry Story is wordless—there is no recognizable language spoken during the entire production, except the language of laughter. With stretches of contemplative poignancy (think Chaplin), not every gag leads to guffaws.

The solemnity underneath the comedy carries you along until the next explosion of hilarity. The wistful message of this play is that we undergo a tumultuous journey in our lives, full of all sorts of unexpected travails that, seen in another light, are comical. If you can survive the hardships that life hurls at you, there will be heartfelt joy.

Fragments of music heard throughout the show are from the following composers and groups: Glenn Miller, Duke Ellington, Jean-Marc Zelwer, Deep Purple, Peter Tchaikovsky, Andrey Baranov, Igor Matvienko, George Benson, Steve Wonder, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Yello, Yes, Mike Oldfield, and Richard Wagner.

More info about Shkidy theatre on