Vera Pavlova is a big figure in modern Russian literature. The honesty and sincerity of Pavlova’s writing, and her measured, sober delivery, are reminiscent of Marina Tsvetaeva. Much of Pavlova’s poetry focuses on personal feelings, and explores many different aspects of life: family (and the tragic way in which it can fall apart), love, and marriage are all common themes of her writing. Her work is referred to as “Poetry for the soul” – introspective, deeply emotional poetry, which confronts the reader with incredibly personal experiences. Even the format of Pavlova’s poetry –very short lines, and poems of just a few lines each – makes the impact of her words all the more powerful.
Letters to the Room Next Door, like much of Pavlova’s work, chooses love as its main theme. Each poem draws its energy and tone from Pavlova’s own experiences, and thus many of them express regret, sadness, or pain. As Pavlova takes her audience through the maze of love, both its difficulties and its pleasures, listeners can identify parallels with their own lives in her poetry. It is no doubt thanks to this connection between reader and poet that Vera Pavlova’s work appeals both to literary experts and to the ordinary reader. For the first time, Pavlova will present her poetry to a London audience, and it is sure to be a moving experience.
Vera Pavlova studied the history of music at Gnessin Academy, and three years later began a successful career in poetry. She rose to prominence very quickly, and is praised for her technical skill, as well as for the direct, powerful impact of her writing. Despite shunning publicity, she has attracted an enormous following in her native Russia, regularly giving readings to packed halls. Pavlova has also received acclaim for her experimentation with new media in her poetry, and has experimented with text-messaging, video clips and postcards. As well as publishing fourteen collections of poetry, she has also written five opera libretti and lyrics for two cantatas. Six theatre companies in Russia have adapted her poetry for the stage.