Yuri (Yura) Kordonsky holds MFA degrees in both Acting and Directing from St. Petersburg State Academy of Theatre Arts, Russia, where he studied under the direction of Lev Dodin. He has taught, performed, and directed internationally since 1989. In the period of 1989-2001, he was a resident actor and director at the renowned Maly Drama Theatre-Theatre of Europe in St. Petersburg.
His directing credits include his original play Disappearance and House of Bernarda Alba by Lorca (Maly Drama Theatre, St. Petersburg, Russia); Uncle Vanya by Chekhov, The Marriage by Gogol, Crime and Punishment by Dostoevsky, and Bury Me Under the Baseboard by Pavel Sanaev (Bulandra Theatre, Bucharest, Romania); The Lower Depths by M. Gorky (Theatre d’Esch, Luxembourg), The Encounter (UNESCO ITI Congress, Manila, Philippines), Fatherlessness by Chekhov (Orkeny Szinhaz, Budapest), Last Day of Youth by Tadeusz Konwicki (National Theatre “Radu Stanca”, Sibiu, Romania) The Seagull by Chekhov (German National Theatre, Timisoara, Romania); Peer Gynt by Ibsen, Oedipus Rex by Sophocles, and The Bald Soprano by Ionesco (Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT), A Diary of a Madman by Gogol (West End Theater, Gloucester, MA), and Canterbury Tales by Chaucer (Riverside Theater, New York), among others.
Yura’s productions have won numerous international awards including Golden Light, Governor’s Award, and Bravo Award for the Best Production (Russia), Union of European Theatres’ Award for the Best Production (Italy), UNITER Awards for Best Production and Best Director (Romania), and the Special Prize of the Romanian Ministry of Culture.
As a performer and director, Yura has toured in more than twenty countries and taught acting and directing in Russia, Germany, Spain, Italy, and Romania. Since moving to the US in 2001 with his family, he has taught at Wesleyan University–where he served as Professor and Chair of Theater Department–as well as at Columbia University, UC San Diego, George Washington University, and the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center.