Leontina Arditi in the play 'Personal Case'
This is a photo of a scene from the play 'Personal Case' by Alexander Stein staged at the Army Theater, Sofia. This is me in the role of Bikova. The photo was taken in the 1960s. I graduated in acting in 1950. I had a one-year probationary period at the National Theater. Meanwhile the Army Theater organized a casting for its troupe; I applied and was accepted. The same year I got married. My first working day was the day of my wedding - 11th September 1951. Of course I didn't go to work; I went to marry my husband, Dilo Dikov Stoyanov, who was of Bulgarian origin. I was immediately assigned some roles by the theater, but I had already got pregnant. I gave birth to my daughter Tatyana in 1952. That's why I played my first role as late as 1952 - in 'Song for the Black Sea People' by Lavrenev. The first person who gave a one-man recital in Bulgaria was the actress Slavka Slavova with 'You Can Endlessly Recount for Mothers' based on a piece by Maxim Gorky. Those days in Bulgaria such performances which represented the so-called 'theater with one actor' were a very rare occasion. The following were the actors Spas Dzhonev with 'Song of the Songs' and Tanya Masalitinova with 'Anna Karenina'. And I was the fourth person, namely with Lermontov's 'Daemon'. The dressed rehearsal with audience took place in the building of the Jewish library club. More than ten of my performances were banned during the totalitarian period [communism]. The reasons: 'snobbism and unhealthy western influence', 'cosmopolitanism' and 'eclectics'. These were especially my performances of 'Vanity Fair' based on Thackeray, 'Crime and Punishment' based on Dostoevsky and '24 Hours from the Life of a Woman' based on Zweig. Those three were banned en block for 'snobbism and unhealthy western influence'. 'The Researcher or Don Quixote Fighting' by Vadim Karastilev was stopped for political reasons. 'Earth, Wait' - same thing. They didn't even explain to me why 'In the Sun and in the Shade' was stopped. The commission just saw it and gave me a curt refusal. However, I think the reasons were neither political, nor anti-Semitic. In my opinion, it was due to the famous envy that colleagues in the theater harbor against each other.