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Yuri Kuklachev’s lessons of kindness help people live in harmony with themselves

Yuri Kuklachev’s Theatre — established in 1990 — is probably the most unusual in the world, featuring six dogs and 120 cats. Recently, the leader of this unique troupe arrived in Minsk, as part of the Moscow State Institute of Culture’s delegation. People’s Artiste of Russia Yuri Kuklachev visited the Belarusian University of Culture and Arts, giving a master class to its students.

By Tatiana Gazhinovich

He tells us, “I come regularly to Belarus, doing so with great pleasure, bringing my performances and books. I lead the Ecology of the Soul laboratory and have written over ten textbooks on the topic of moral health, with a circulation of over a million copies. I know that Belarusians treat my monographs graciously.”

Why did you decide to deal with the ecology of the soul?

I travel so much worldwide, observing spiritual crisis and problems. When I began working at the theatre, I used to record the behaviour of my cat; I have 15 boxes of diaries. Observation of the lives of people and cats inspired me to write ‘Lessons of Kindness’. I hope that my readers learn to live in harmony with nature, people and — primarily — with their own souls. I’ve even suggested teaching kindness at school.

How did you bring up your children?

I did this with encouragement. I discovered their talents and encouraged them. It’s the same simple system as we use with cats. You can’t tame cats. My task is to help children find their vocation, rather than the job with the best salary. Today’s children focus on extremes, so we really need to change this, nurturing an atmosphere of kindness. Our main task should be saving children.

Who is your most famous actor?

Boris the cat is a true star, participating in advertising and earning money for our theatre. He is an honourable resident of the theatre. ‘The Olympiad of Cat Boris’ show features 70 cats but Boris is the best, as he can jump from a 6m tall pole.

Who are your biggest fans?

In summer, only ten percent of those coming are from Moscow, others arrive from the former Soviet republics.

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