Early 1990s Russia: the wall has fallen, the Soviet Empire has collapsed, and a new social order is being built from the ground up. Faced with corrupt government officials, bumbling diplomats, traumatized citizens, and rapidly globalizing capitalism, a fractured nation holds onto a last hope for the salvation of their children: puppets. Join Natasha Lance Rogoff to discuss Muppets in Moscow, the “unexpected crazy true story” of her time as lead producer on Russia’s Sesame Street. As the West dismantled the iron curtain, Rogoff was responsible for teaching the first post-soviet generation how to communicate their feelings, contribute to society, and show kindness to one another. From government raids to assassinations to clashes over puppet design, step into the world of Ulitsa Sezam.
About the speakers:
Natasha Lance Rogoff is an award-winning television director, producer and writer of more than 25 years. Her previous credits include executive producer of Ulitsa Sezam (Sesame Street in Russia) and producer of Plaza Sesamo (Sesame Street in Mexico.) After studying at the Leningrad State University, she wrote about Soviet underground culture, as well as one of the earliest exposé of Soviet government persecution of the Russian LGBTQ community in the San Francisco Chronicle. She is now an Associate in the Art, Film and Visual Studies Department at Harvard University and lives between Cambridge, Massachusetts, and New York City.
Edward Charlton-Jones studied History and Russian at Oxford and Harvard. He has written and lectured on the Russian emigration to Constantinople in 1918-1923, as well as on aspects of Russian literature and art. He has practiced law in Paris and Istanbul, with a focus on international energy projects.
Important information: The discussion will be available both online and in person. While the conversation will happen in person (Rogoff will appear in the Reading Room), the Library will stream the conversation on Zoom for a live viewing experience. Both in-person and online attendees will be able to pose questions.
This event requires advance registration.
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