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At the end of 1994, Yuri Mamin together with the composer and actor Alexey Zalivalov began filming educational, funny, musical and original programs about musicians and other people of art, named “From Forte to Piano”, for the channel RTR. The programs starring actors and musicians of St. Petersburg were on every month.

Abundant in historical anecdotes, in musical parodies and jokes, in mystifications and paradoxes, the programs gained wide popularity with the viewers. 

And when in 1997, due to financial difficulties, the program “From Forte to Piano” was shut down, the public opinion forced the channel RTR heads to continue with it. In a couple of months, Mamin and Zalivalov were back on the screen with a new original program under the name of “Chameleon”.  

“Chameleon” continued to create screen versions of great musicians’ biographies – Shalyapin, Caruzo, Utesov.  Widening its field of activities, the program now was telling about Stalin, about the Russian language, and about writers. It showed screen versions of novellas by Maugham and Taffy. “Chameleon” discovered a new genre: “opera within 5 minutes”, which presented a number of stage versions of librettos of classical operas. “Zhenka Onegin”, a 20-minute musical parody, was mocking at modern pop music tastes. “Chameleon” also featured a certain pseudo-Mexican mini-series named “Sancho from a Rancho” (the script by Vladimir Vardunas and Yuri Mamin). Despite all the good promises given by President Yeltsin, 1998 was the year of default, and the new head of the channel RTR, M. Lesin, closed the “Chameleon” by his order. 

But Yuri Mamin’s collaboration with the TV did not halt. He shot a TV film “A Happy New Year, Eldar Alexandrovych!” to mark the 75-th birthday of his teacher and the outstanding film director Eldar Ryazanov. Mamin was also the host of the “Observatory” program on the channel RTR for St. Petersburg. 

From 2009, Mamin hosts a weekly TV original program “House of Culture” on the channel TV-100 (St. Petersburg). The program is interactive and it discusses various themes of culture. TV viewers have a chance to talk directly to the host and to discuss the burning issues of today. For the channel TV-100 Mamin is also filming the satiric TV-Magazine ”Oskolki” (Splinters), 7 issues of which were broadcast in the autumn of 2010. (More information can be found in the Mamin’s TV-program commentary)


At the end of the summer of 2011, Yuri Mamin shot a short documentary film at the commission of the administration of St. Petersburg and the town of Pushkin (Tsarskoye Selo). This film, named «Tsarskoselsky Private Viewing», is devoted to physically handicapped people.


In the summer of 2011, Yuri Mamin delivered lectures on film directing at

the famous Middlebury University, Vermont, to the students of the Russian

language. He told about this interesting experience in the film «Yuri Mamin.

Learning Russian in America». The film was broadcast by the TV Channel 100.


© Katerina Ksenyeva 2011