A BELATED PREMIERE (Russia, 2003, BETA SP, 60’)
Director: Viktor Bocharov.
DoP: Inna Tiktinskaya. Design: Yuri Soloviev.  Piano: Yulia Simonova, Irina Johansson, Elena Pavlova. Narrators (English version): Christopher Hamilton, Jennifer Gaspar. Production: MIRIS, with support from the Cinema Service of the Russian Ministry of Culture

Viktor Bocharov is a St Petersburg film producer, director, and an outstanding authority on ballet and opera. He acquired the Shiryaev archive from the photographer Daniil Saveliev in 1995. The first restorations of the 17.5mm positive prints were carried out by David Cleveland of the East Anglian Film Archive, while the 35mm material was transferred on to digital media in London. Using this material, along with photographs and other documents, Bocharov directed this documentary account of Shiryaev’s life, where he places him into the context of the emergence of cinema and in the framework of ballet history. Including practically all of Shiryaev’s animation work, A Belated Premiere was first shown at a festival of the Russian State Film Archive, Gosfilmofond, in January 2004, where it appeared to reverse the history of Russian cinema and of puppet animation, which had considered Ladislaw Starewicz to be the world’s first puppet animator. A Belated Première is, in Bocharov’s own words, a research publication of some material from Shiryaev’s legacy.

Shiryaev's Archive

Home Movies

Berlin Street Scenes (17.5mm positive, 3’05”)
Bare-chested Men Wrestling (17.5mm negative, 34”)
Blind-Man’s Buff (17.5mm positive, 40”)
Boating (17.5mm positive, 58”)
Bridge (17.5mm positive, 26”)
Carousel at a Country Fair (17.5mm negative, 12.5”)
Children Dancing around Lone Man (17.5mm negative, 22.25”)
Children Playing “Gorodki” Game](17.5mm negative, 57”)
Country Scenes in Ukraine (17.5mm positive, 4’18”)
Harvesters; Man with two horses; Cows and sheep, with spectators; Girl on horse; Close-up group of women; Close-up group; Group; Andrei Shiryaev plays soldiers with a uniformed servant; Beating flax; Farmyard with pigs; Farmyard with cattle; Children playing ball; Horse being put through paces; Andrei Shiryaev (aged about 3) dances, as Shiryaev claps the rhythm; Andrei Shiryaev dances, accompanied by woman playing accordion;
Garden Scenes (17.5mm positive, 1’52)
Group of Five Women (17.5mm positive, 30”)
Haystack Fun (17.5mm negative, 55”)
Woman with Small Boy and Baby (17.5mm positive, 8”)
Man in a Uniform Changes Cap (17.5mm negative, 20”)
Playing with Boats (17.5mm negative, 1’03”)
Shiryaev with Baby Chicks (close-up) (17.5mm negative, 33”)
Ukrainian Portraits (17.5mm positive, total 4’15”)
Matveeva lighting cigarette; Unidentified young  woman; Matveeva eating watermelon; Shiryaev smoking; Andrei Shiryaev in cap; Matveeva eating fruit; Short-sighted old lady; Flirting couple; Old lady threading needle; Old lady reading; Andrei Shiryaev; Shiryaev operating 17.5mm film projector; Children; Matveeva and Andrei Shiryaev; Interfering people; Two girls dancing; Taking bows; Smokers; Woman and Andrei Shiryaev feeding chickens
Windmills, with Children Playing in Foreground (17.5mm negative, 10”)
Windmills, with People Grouped in Foreground (17.5mm negative, 3”)
Nikolay Panin, ice skater (17.5mm positive, 40” + 24”)
Snowballing (two shots) (17.5mm positive, 25”)
Tobogganing (four shots) (17.5mm negative, 1’08”)
Animals: Monkey; Chicks; Snake (17.5mm positive, 1’20”)
Beetles and Snake in Aquarium (17.5mm negative 1’44”)
Explosion in Quarry (17.5mm positive, 45”)

Staged Comedies

The Befuddled Film-Maker (35mm positive, 30”)
Circus Artists ( negative, 36”)
The Clown and the Elephant (17.5mm negative, 1’42”; 17.5mm positive, 1’30”)
The Crocodile (17.5mm positive, 38”)
Drunkards (17.5mm positive, 1’15”)
The Fisherman’s Dream (17.5mm positive, 4’20”)
An Interrupted Dinner (17.5mm positive, 2’58”)
The Lodger and the Spider (17.5mm positive, 1’52”)
The Naughty Girl and Granny (17.5mm positive, 2’02”)
The Tomboy (17.5mm positive, 2’45”)
A Troublesome Couple (17.5mm negative, 2’53”)
A Wet Romance (17.5mm positive, 1’27”)

Trick Films

Boy in a Sack (17.5mm positive, 52”)
Chairs (35mm positive, 20”)
The Enchanted Tea Table (17.5mm positive, 42”)
Magical Dressing (17.5mm negative, 35”)
Pierrot and the Maid (17.5mm positive, 2’02”)
Pierrot and the Maid (variant version) (17.5mm negative, 1’52”)

Dance Films


Puppet Animation


Paper Films


Later Films: Leningrad Choreographic Institute in the 1920s


Commercial Films from Ernemann



Updated: May 2009