An outstanding opera bass singer, Honored Artist of RSFSR, lead soloist of the Novosibirsk Opera and Ballet theatre Mikhail Deyneko would have turned 80 years today. He has served 20 years with the Novosibirsk opera theatre, having performed 20 lead bass parts.
“Mikhail Ivanovich Deyneko is a true Russian bass singer with a big powerful voice. As he walked onstage - a tall, majestic, brilliant man – the auditorium would fill up with his rumbling colossal voice; that was really impressive. He was loved and appreciated by his colleagues and administration for his calm temper, friendly attitude towards his stage partners, kind and soft humor. He, was a nice partner to work with, was not a show-off, would never let anyone down and never took it personal – for example if he hadn’t been approved for a premiere show; he was a patient and reliable person” - told a National Artist of RSFSR Zinaida Zakharovna Didenko, who has spent many years working with Mikhail Ivanovich. Mikhail Deyneko was born in Volokonovka village, Belgorod region in a family of working men. After graduating from school he entered an industrial college.
Mikhail Deyneko often participated in amateur performances and that led him to an All-Russian amateur talent contest in Novosibirsk, where he was immediately marked and appreciated. Later he was invited to the Moscow State Conservatory, where he studied under the professor Gugo Natanovich Titz, who has raised a lot of famous singers. In 1964 Mikhail Deyneko joined the Novosibirsk theatre company, but a year after he moved to Kislovodsk, Stavropol Philharmonic Society; after that he spent a year working with the Gorky Opera and Ballet theatre, then the Kazakh Opera and Ballet theatre named after Abay situated in Almaty and then in 1972, 7 years after that he returned to the Novosibirsk theatre. His majestic voice, full, noble and powerful, his perfect skill and fine vocal education, artistic gift, brilliant stage behavior let Mikhail Deyneko create a list of unforgettable characters: Boris Godunov, Pimen («Boris Godunov» by Ì. Mussorgsky), Dosifey («Khovanshchina» by Ì. Mussorgsky), Prince Gremin («Eugene Onegin» by P. Tchaikovsky), Méphistophélès («Faust» C. Gounod), The Archbishop («The Maid of Orleans» by P. Tchaikovsky), The King of Egypt, Ramfis («Aida» by G. Verdi), The Miller («Rusalka» by A. Dargomyzhsky), Konchak («Prince Igor» by A. Borodin), Sparafucile («Rigoletto» by G. Verdi), Basilio («The Barber of Seville » by G. Rossini), King René («Iolanta» by P. Tchaikovsky), Lodovico («Otello» by G. Verdi), Surin («The Queen of Spades» by P. Tchaikovsky), Sobakin («Tsar’s Bride» by N. Rimsky-Korsakov) and other.
Mikhail Deyneko toured a lot with the theatre company across Russia and abroad (Poland 1986, Egypt 1993), also was a guest star in theatres of Poland, France, Netherlands, Israel, his performances were a success at the Bolshoi theatre.
His performance in Mussorgsky’s “Khovanshchina” in Poland was particularly marked by local press: “We must particularly mention the amazing bass voice of Mikhail Deyneko, who created the glorious, inspired Dosifey”. Soon after that the artist was invited to take part in the premiere of Mussorgsky’s “Boris Godunov” opera to the Grand theatre of Warsaw, with its company he toured in France. «The Pimen part was perfectly performed by Mikhail Deyneko: the genuine bass tone, deep and saturate» - wrote the Figaro newspaper in June 1987.
«I was still a student in the conservatory when I first met Mikhail Ivanovich, who came to give us master class. He was an artist to take after, first of all because of his tone – outstanding, unique voice, I still haven’t heard anything like that, second – he was a very dedicated person, he accepted any work the theatre proposed, he learned his parts quickly, he lived and worked for the sake of art, – told Ivan Mikhailovich Potritsaev, an Honored artist of RSFSR - he had an interesting hobby, he loved TV sets, enjoyed fixing it. Mikhail was a very sociable person, easy-going; it was comfortable communicating with him, he loved his life and his work. Mikhail Ivanovich Deyneko is a whole era of the Novosibirsk theatre history».
Mikhail Ivanovich Deyneko passed away in 1994 after a severe disease, at the peak of his career.
People of Volokonovka, Belgorod region, thoroughly keep his memory – there is a memorial in a school he learned at, and the Volokonovsky Local History Museum has his personal display.