The purpose of the theater

“Do you know why I abandoned all my personal affairs and took up the theater? Because the theater is the most powerful pulpit, more powerful in its influence than books or the press. This pulpit fell into the hands of the rabble of humanity, and they turned it into a place of depravity. … My task is to explain to the modern generation, to the best of my ability, that the actor is a prophet of beauty and truth.”

— Konstantin Stanislavsky, Russian actor and theater director.

I. Vinogradskaia, Zhizn’i tvorchestvo K. S. Stanislavskogo. Letopis’. [Life and works of K. S. Stanislavsky: chronicle], in four volumes, vol. 1 (Moscow, 1971), p.341. Cited in Solomon Volkov, The Magical Chorus: A History of Russian Culture from Tolstoy to Solzhenitsyn. Tr. Antonina W. Bouis. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2008, p.13.