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Marc Bernes - All about the band: biography and facts

It is very difficult, if not impossible, to assess the contribution of this man to the development of the Soviet stage...

Mark Bernes - the story of a Soviet artist

Mark Bernes is known as an outstanding actor, and also as a legend of the pop scene of the USSR! Laureate of the Stalin Prize of the first degree, beloved idol of the Soviet public and just a talented chansonnier - this outstanding person is the author of the timeless song classics of bygone years ... Each of his works is full of sincerity, life ... Bernes' songs warmed the hearts of soldiers in the war, giving strength and instilling faith ...

Getting started

Mark Bernes (at the birth of Neumann) was born in the fall of 1911 in the city of Nizhyn, Russian Empire. The Neumann family was practical, and therefore great hopes were placed on their son ... Having moved to Kharkov, Mark was sent to a commercial and industrial school. However, even then the boy's soul belonged to the stage ...

Mark Bernes in his youth
Mark Bernes in his youth ...

In order to get one step closer to his dream, 16-year-old Mark worked part-time as a poster poster. To his great surprise, very soon he had the honor to build a theatrical career! The debut of the young star took place in 1928 on the stage of the Mussoorie Theater.

Mark changed his surname closer to the 1930s. After graduating from theater courses, the guy went to conquer Moscow ... At first he had to spend the night right at the Kursk railway station ... It is not known how many more nights the guy would have had to sleep in such conditions if it were not for the porter who sent Mark to the Maly Theater! At first, the Soviet pop star lived in the dressing room ...

Career: Cinematography, stage...

Bernes made his film debut in the mid-1930s in the film Prisoners. He got to the set not by a lucky chance, but by acquaintance with Mikhail Astangov. Actually, thanks to a friend, Mark played the role of Krasovsky's spy in the film "Miners" and a Red Army soldier in the film "A Man with a Gun". So, the image of a boy with an accordion and machine-gun belts made the 26-year-old Bernes famous throughout the entire Soviet Union! A little later, Bernes' success was fixed in the film "Fighters", where he performed "Comrade flies to a distant land" ...

“Mark was the only one on the set who worked with both the poet and the composer! There were days when he said: "Here you need to change." And his remarks were always welcome… He felt the music so subtly…” recalled Eduard Kolmanovsky.

It is worth emphasizing that Bernes approached the implementation of each of his new roles with great responsibility. So, for example, for the tape "Two Soldiers" he specially learned a unique dialect! Not without an inexperienced hairdresser, who cut the actor's hair terribly ... However, director Leonid Lukov really liked this reincarnation! Yes, and the audience too ... And the composition "Dark Night" that sounded in the film, which touched the viewer to the core, was written literally on the go - at night, before filming the episode "Dugout"! Later, they also told how the studio employees cried when they first heard this work ...

"Hurrah, Bernes!"

- This is the name that the club founded by Mark's fans got in the 60s ... By the way: during his long career, Bernes starred in almost 40 films! He began to perform legendary compositions on stage in the first half of the 1940s. In the capital, they started talking about Mark Bernes only after the end of the war. Continuing his acting career, Mark contributed to the creation of 80 (at least) songs that have become all-Union favorite hits!

Mark Bernes.
Mark Bernes.

Once Vladimir Vysotsky himself said:

“What he did on stage is the ideal that I dream of in terms of performance ...”

Artist Mark Bernes
Artist Mark Bernes

However ... like many geniuses, Bernes had a rather difficult character, which even secured him the title of "finicky Mark." But no one could resist his unique manner of performance: neither the composers, nor the directors, nor the audience… “I love you, life” – following Bernes, these timeless melodies were picked up by the entire Soviet Union!

Not everything is so smooth...

However, Bernes' career did not proceed as smoothly as it might seem today ... On the threshold of the 60s, the artist was accused of writing "vulgar" music! And a violation of traffic rules was regarded as "behavior unworthy of a Soviet artist." Fortunately for the singer's fans, the disgrace lasted only a few years! Already in the early 60s, the phenomenal voice with a recognizable hoarseness again sounded throughout the entire USSR!

“He sang not with his voice, but with his heart ...” - Roman Karmen.

In the same period, Bernes gave fans the famous "Enemies burned their own hut" in a new version. The tragic story shocked the listeners ... Actually, it could not have been otherwise when the melody from the artist’s repertoire was just beginning to sound ... “Do the Russians want wars”, “I work as a magician”, “Where does the Motherland begin”, “Cranes” - each of these works became an anthem for the Soviet listener.

“He did not complicate the simple, but did not simplify the complex… He connected the moment with eternity…” said Rasul Gamzatov.

The legendary composition "Sometimes it seems to me that the soldiers / From the bloody fields that did not come ..." became the last in Bernes' repertoire ...

Personal life

Mark Bernes...
Mark Bernes...

Despite the dizzying success, throughout his life, Bernes remained a modest man. He also proved to be a reliable head of the family. By the way: the artist had only two official marriages. Unfortunately, his first wife, Polina Linetskaya, died quite young. The girl left Mark's three-year-old daughter Natalya ...

When the girl went to first grade, Mark met Lilia Bodrova, who eventually became his second wife. The couple met at school, since Lilia's son, Jean, was Natalia's classmate ... It is worth noting that at that time the woman was married. However, true love knows no barriers! So ... very soon after they met, Lilia told Lucien, her husband, that she was leaving him and going to Bernes. Lilia's husband was a wealthy man, plus everything - a real "womanizer" as they say. Bodrova did not want to put up with this, and taking her son away, she immediately moved to live with Mark. The couple subsequently divorced. All his life, the artist perceived Jean as his own son ...

The lovers did not part even during the tour! The woman always accompanied her star husband... Once Bernes went on tour to Poland without Lilia. And was it a coincidence, but soon he became seriously ill ... Then Bodrova was immediately called to Poland!

Last years of life…

Having celebrated his 50th Anniversary, the artist continued to engage in creativity, regularly replenishing the repertoire with new works ... And, it would seem, nothing foreshadowed trouble, when suddenly ...

Mark Bernes on stage
Mark Bernes on stage

At the end of the concert, Bernes became ill. The artist went backstage and ... fell unconscious. He was promptly taken to the hospital, where he was diagnosed with a terrible diagnosis: lung cancer ...

Shortly before his death, the artist managed to write the legendary hit "Cranes", to the verses of Rasul Gamzatov. The composition was dedicated to all those soldiers who did not return from the war ...

Mark Bernes passed away in August 1969. The artist seemed to have a premonition of his own death, which is why he gave an order in advance regarding his funeral. Bernes asked to refrain from farewell speeches and funeral marches ... The singer insisted that only his best hits be played at the farewell ceremony ...

After the death of her husband, Lilia was left alone, with two sixteen-year-old teenagers in her arms ... She did not arrange her personal life. When Jean and Natalia grew up, they scattered in all directions ... The woman was left alone. In 2006, she was also gone ...

Conclusion…

It is very difficult, if possible at all, to evaluate the contribution of this person to the development of the Soviet stage ... However, it is even more difficult to convey in words the love and devotion of his fans, which they expected new songs and roles from him ... During his lifetime, Bernes was never awarded the title of People's Artist of the USSR ... Although ... what does it matter now if for millions of people it has become native? Historical great personality, whose voice led soldiers to victory, and ordinary people to new achievements!

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