Mikhail Venediktovich Mikisha

1885 - 1971

Picture of Mikhail Venediktovich Mikisha
Mikisha was born on May 25 (June 6), 1885, at Mirgorod, present-day Poltava Oblast, in a poor peasant family.

In 1903, he graduated from Mirgorod hudozh-Industrial School. Mikisha participated in the revolutionary movement (spreading illegal literature, drawing cartoons), for which in 1903 he was arrested.

Mikisha studied voice at the N. V. Lysenko Kiev Musical Drama School from 1904 to 1910. From 1906, he was a pupil of A. F. Myszuga.

During the period of his study in the house of Lysenko, he met with writers Kotsyubinsky, Ivan Franko, Lesya Ukrainka, composer K. Stetsenko, artists M. Zankovyetska, P. Saksagansky, N. Sadowski, and other well-known figures.

In 1910, Mikisha made debut as Yontek in Kiev (Sadovsky's theatre). During 1910-22, he was soloist at the Kiev's Opera Theater, making his debut as Faust. From 1919, Mikisha was director of the Ukraine Music Drama.

During 1922-31, Mikisha was soloist at the Bolshoi.

During 1931-42, he was soloist in Kharkov.

During 1942-44, he was soloist at the Opera and Ballet Theater in Kiev when the theater was evacuated to Irkutsk.

Mikisha had a beautiful, strong voice with a wide range, a sense of style and drama. His easy sounding voice enabled the singer to sing first lyrical roles. From 1919, on the advice of L. Sobinov, he sang only dramatic parts.

His repertoire included about 50 roles, among them: Uottera (Sin Solntsa), Herodes, Grigori, Kutierma, José, Radames, Raoul, Cavaradossi, Prince, Golitsin, Alyosha Popovich (Dobrinya Nikitich), Vakula, Petro, Levko ...

He retired from the stage in 1944. Mikisha taught at the Kharkov Conservatory (from 1937) and the Kiev Conservatory (from 1944; professor, from 1946). His students included: V. Budnevich, Z. Gaidai, A. Grigoriev, M. Rybalkin, M. Stefanovic, and N. Chubenko.

In 1935, he was elected to the Dzerzhinsky District Council in Kharkov.

Mikisha recorded. His voice is included in the anthology "Zoloti voices of Ukraine" (Kiev. 1970).

Mikisha died on November 20, 1971 in Kiev.

Reference 1: M. Sheliubskyi M. V. Mykysha, Kiev, 1947.
Reference 2
Reference 3

I wish to thank Vladimir Efimenko for the biographical notes and picture.
Украденный Игором

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