Yıvan Kırlya: biography, creativity, career, personal life

Biography: early years


 Yıvan Kırlya, née Kirill Ivanovich Ivanov, came to light on March 17, 1909 in the hamlet of Kupsola, in the Republic of Mari El. His father was a member of the Committee of the Poor, and was a very active member. That’s what I paid for with life. Local fists brutally killed him. The mother single-handedly raised three children. In order to make her life easier somehow, Yivan started working early. He was a shepherd and batrak from well-off fellow villagers, also often asked for alms in the city.

Despite life’s hardships, he managed to graduate from his first stage school in his native village. To continue his studies, Kırlä left for the neighboring settlement of Sernur. At the age of 17 he was sent on a voucher to study at Kazan University.

As a student, Yivan became an active participant in the self-activity circle. He soon began to be interested in poetry. Thus, Yyvan studied the work of Sergei Yesenin, Alexander Zharov, Vladimir Mayakovsky with precision.

Kyrlya didn’t miss any university creative evening. Teachers paid attention to his mastery of reincarnation on stage and sent to the acting faculty of the State Technical School of Cinematography.


In 1929, director Nikolay Ekk began filming the first Soviet sound film “Putevka to Life”, the focus of which was street children. Yivan was among the students of the acting faculty invited to participate in the mass event. The director immediately paid attention to him. Thus Kyrlya got the role of Mustafa, the leader of street children.

Filming went on for almost two years. The painting went on Soviet screens in 1931. She had success with the audience, and some of Kyrli’s character phrases became winged, among them the famous: “Sleight of hand and no fraud.” Having experience of vagrancy, Yivan became perfectly involved in the role of a street boy.

After the technical school, Kyrlya started working at the Vostokfilm film studio. In two years, he starred in several paintings, among them “The Viceroy of the Buddha”. At the same time, he decided to take a pseudonym. “Yıvan Kırlya” in Mari means “Kirill, son of Ivan”.

In 1937, he moved to Yoshkar-Ola, where he was admitted to the Mari Dramtheater troupe. Kırlä was involved in a number of performances. They include “Lyubov Yarovaya” and “Dubrovsky”.

In parallel with the work on the paddles of Kyrl, he worked poems. The writings of his poetic work were printed in the newspaper “Mari Yal”. Yivan has also produced three collections of poems in the Mari language. In 1937 he was admitted to the Union of Writers of the USSR.

Personal life

Information about Jıvan Kırli’s wife and children is absent. Little is known about his last years of life. According to one account, he died in the war. And for others — in one of the Ural camps for political prisoners. This is known to have occurred in 1943.

In 2009, a monument to Kırla appeared in Yoshkar-Ola. It is near the railway station of the city. Also, one of the Yoshkar-Olin streets bears his name.

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