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A touching love story by correspondence between the parents of humorist Efim Shifrin, which began with a tragedy
A touching love story by correspondence between the parents of humorist Efim Shifrin, which began with a tragedy

There are artists whose appearance on the TV screen involuntarily begins to smile. Only now their fates are sometimes not always as bright and cloudless as their performances. This fully applies to the well-known parodist of the Russian stage Efim Shifrinborn in the family of an enemy of the people. And although parents are not chosen, their bitter fates, whatever one may say, always leave a deep imprint on life, and on the worldview, and on the inner world of each person. Today in our review is a sentimental story of the life and love of the artist's parents, which, I think, will not leave anyone indifferent.

Popular pop artist, director, actor, singer - Efim Shifrin

Efim Shifrin is a popular pop artist-parodist, director, film actor, singer, host of humorous TV programs, founder and artistic director of Shifrin-Theater. His bright, original talent as a parody master manifested itself at school and throughout his life was his creative credo. His humor, subtle and sarcastic, always hit the target, making the audience laugh heartily. And the artist is also considered to be the owner of excellent vocal skills and writing talent, passed on to him from his father.

Shifrin ascended to the top of his Olympus, and, of course, this was preceded by a rather long life and creative path with victories and failures, with bumps and sharp turns.

Turning the pages of a biography

Efim Shifrin (according to his passport - Nakhim Shifrin) was born in the Magadan region in the small village of Neksikan in 1956 in the family of a Russian and Israeli writer, memoirist, former political prisoner Zalman Shifrin and Rasha Tsypina. Talking about Efim Shifrin, it is simply impossible not to tell the dramatic story of the acquaintance and love of his parents. However, as well as about what trials and circles of hell they had to go through.

Guilty without guilt

Zalman Shifrin

The father of the future famous actor's name was Zalman Shmuilovich Shifrin (1910-1995), he comes from the small town of Dribin, Mogilev province, in Belarus. Mother - Raisa (Rasha) Ilyinichna Tsypina (1915-1992), also from those places. As a 16-year-old boy, Zalman Shifrin entered the Vitebsk Jewish Pedagogical College. But less than a year later, due to the denunciation, he had to leave "of his own accord" and return home. The denunciation stated that he was the son of the Nepman and had no right to study at a state educational institution.

He returned to Vitebsk in 1931 and entered to study at the industrial department at the Vitebsk financial and accounting technical school, where he was the executive editor of the wall newspaper, led the accounting office, and was engaged in various social work. But soon they began to write denunciations against Zalman again. And this time, letters began to come to the administration that Zalman Shifrin was the son of the disenfranchised and was hiding his origin. Of course, the young man was expelled from the technical school again. But even this could not break the guy's desire for knowledge: he graduated from the paid eight-month accounting and accounting courses, and later entered the Moscow Correspondence Institute of Financial and Economic Sciences.

However, the worst turns of fate began in August 1938, when Zalman Shifrin was arrested…. Accusing the humble accountant of being a member of a Bundon criminal group that was engaged in espionage for foreign intelligence services, they brought charges under Article 58: espionage for Poland. Then, in the distant 38th, he was sentenced to ten years incommunicado and exiled to the Far North for life. Alas, such was the terrible time of repressions that broke hundreds of thousands of human destinies …

Sarah Shifrin is a twin sister and Zalman Shifrin

Zalman Shmuilovich spent most of his imprisonment in the Magadan Region. Working in the difficult areas of Dalstroi in Kolyma, which was reputed to be the most famous region for the labor camps of the Gulag, Shifrin Sr. felled timber, worked as loading firewood and as an accountant, mined gold in the mines, worked in a tannery, a foundry and a factory. And once, when the term was nearing the end, he even almost died of typhus. During his illness, the prisoner was exhausted so that he weighed no more than 30 kilograms. And so he would have died on the bed of the camp infirmary, if it were not for the compassionate doctor, also a prisoner, who began to drink a living "corpse" with a spoon - water and broth.

So Zalman Shmuilovich Shifrin survived. By that time, his term of imprisonment had already expired and the so-called "freedom" awaited him, that is, he changed the camp barracks to a barrack for settlers. And in 1950 his Raisa came to him.

Correspondence love

About the fate of her future spouse Raya - that was the name of the 35-year-old woman in the Russian way, I learned from his brother Gessel, who told about Zalman. She was moved to the depths of her soul by the tragic story of the political prisoner and decided to write him a letter to support him morally. Zalman answered her and enclosed his photo. Over time, a warm correspondence ensued, which was the reason that at the end of 1950, Raya gathered in the Far North to a man whom she saw only from one single photo, which their son Yefim subsequently could not recall without shuddering:

Raisa Tsypina. / Zalman Shifrin

Indeed, Raisa has never regretted her decision in her entire life. And then, back in 1950, she was happy, overflowing with hope and optimism, traveling across the country to her beloved man into the unknown. And you have to understand what kind of trip it was: first you had to take a train to Vladivostok, in the Golden Horn Bay, board a ship filled with people from top to bottom, and sail to Nagaev Bay. And from there, along the Kolyma highway, hitchhiking to the mines. Raisa Tsypina has come all this way, without even thinking for a moment that she may have taken a rash step. She rode towards her fate, to a person whom she had never seen in person. She went to get married.

Efim Shifrin with his parents

Immediately upon arrival, Zalman and Raya got married. The woman got a job in a kindergarten, where children of the same exiles were brought. And a year later, the first-born Samuel was born in their family, who in the future will also become a creative person - a conductor, trombonist and teacher.

And when Zalman Shmuilovich was rehabilitated in 1956, it turned out that Raisa was pregnant with her second child. But in the village of Susuman, where they lived, there was no maternity hospital. Women were taken to give birth to the village of Nexican, which was about forty kilometers away. And since Raya, despite the rehabilitation of her husband, was still considered the wife of an enemy of the people, she was seated without ceremony in the back of a truck and sent to the hospital. From the incredible shaking in the back of the woman, contractions began. Until they brought the child, until the child was taken out - and he was no longer breathing … Raisa gave birth to her third son when she was already 41 years old. The child was named Nakhim, mother called affectionately - Fimochka.

Zalman Shmuilovich Shifrin is a writer-memoirist. Writing works: "Tyranny of Stalin", "Life-Death-Life": (From an unforgettable terrible past). He described in detail about his stay in the dungeons of the Orsha department of the NKVD in his memoirs “Sad Rhapsody. Biography of Zalman Shifrin ". After the death of his wife, he left for Israel, where he was buried. Outlived his Raisa Zalman for only two years

For another 10 long years, the rehabilitated Zalman Shmuilovich did not dare to take his family from the Far North closer to his home because of fear of persecution and persecution. In a socialist society, by inertia, for a long time people like him were considered the enemies of the people.When, finally, the family faced a choice - where to return, the father categorically stated that he would never return to Orsha, despite the fact that his mother lived there. In his soul there were fresh memories of his arrest and prison chambers, where he was deprived of all signs of human dignity. How could he return to the place where the buttons from his trousers were torn off, his laces were stripped? There, where his glasses were taken away from him, myopic one?.. There, where he was mercilessly beaten and mocked? No, it was impossible … From the memoirs of Shifrin Jr.:

Efim Shifrin as a child

Jurmala, which has become a home

In truth, the choice for moving was not great, since the rehabilitated did not have the freedom to choose their place of residence. Moscow was generally taboo. Therefore, it was decided to go to the Baltic States, where the relatives of Raisa Ilinichna lived. In 1965 the family settled in Jurmala. Then it was a quiet suburb of Riga. After the Kolyma housing, the Jurmala house, bought together with his brother Zalman Shmuilovich for two families, seemed luxurious to Nakhim. And about his first impressions of a ten-year-old boy, he spoke like this:

Efim Shifrin with his mother

School years in Jurmala

At school, Nakhim was very shy. Due to poor eyesight inherited from his father, the boy was forced to wear glasses, it was because of them that he often became the subject of angry jokes from his classmates. The boy became complex, and in order to somehow win the favor of his peers, he began to grimace and clown around, mimicking those around him. Such behavior of Shifrin Jr. undoubtedly earned him the respect of the guys. Especially after one incident when he performed at a holiday concert with a parody of one of the teachers. The performance was a huge success, and after that Nakhim became the highlight of the program of any event held on the stage of the school.

Efim Shifrin during his school years

And of course, it was in those years that Nakhim did not even think about any other profession - as an artist. Therefore, having received a certificate, he went to Moscow to submit documents to the Shchukin school. But he failed the exams and returned home, where he entered the Faculty of Philology at the Latvian State University. After lectures in the evenings, Nakhim literally disappeared into the student theater. He continued to be irresistible in all art competitions and concert programs of amateur performances, which ultimately strengthened his decision to become an artist by all means.

Efim Shifrin with his parents

Creative career

A year later, a new attempt was crowned with success - and Shifrin became a student at the Rumyantsev Variety and Circus School in Moscow. He studied under the guidance of Roman Viktyuk, a renowned production director. After graduation, the artist takes on a more euphonious stage name "Efim" and begins to work in several theaters in Moscow. Soon the parodist becomes the laureate of the first competition of pop artists in Moscow, and later - the laureate of the seventh competition.

Realizing that he needed to grow further, already at that time the popular parodist entered GITIS, at the faculty of stage directors. In the nineties he created his own "Shifrin Theater", became a laureate of the major prize "Golden Ostap". He also sings quite a lot, including romances. Received the Cup of Arkady Raikin, as well as the Cup of Yuri Nikulin for participation in the "Circus with the Stars." He also played with Andrei Konchalovsky, wrote several books. He was a member of the jury in the Variety Theater show on Channel One. He conducted the revived "Around Laughter" on the same channel.

Efim Shifrin

Personal life

Efim Shifrin is an extremely interesting person. A successful artist and showman enjoys the love of the public, but at the same time he is extremely secretive about his personal life. Fans of talent have to put up with such secrecy of their favorite actor. From what is known, it is only that he has no wife or heirs. The artist does not apply to the topic of romantic relationships.As you know, secrets always give rise to numerous speculations and gossip, and therefore Efim Shifrin became the object of close attention of reporters who do not miss an opportunity to raise a very sensitive issue of his sexual orientation. However, Efim Zalmanovich gives no reason to doubt his orientation and suppresses all conversations on this topic. In general, the actor enjoys talking to journalists, telling them about his creative plans and successes.

Efim Shifrin

It's no secret that he is not only a pop artist, but also engaged in bodybuilding at a professional level. It should be noted that the sound engineer Alexei Shirman brought Efim to the gym for the first time, when the artist was 37 years old. Before that, he had not been involved in any kind of sports - neither in childhood, nor in adolescence. Having entered a fitness club for the first time, Shifrin became so interested in bodybuilding that seven years later, he became the owner of the statuette and the award of the International network of clubs World Class "Mister Fitness" and a certificate of honor from the Federation of Bodybuilding in Moscow, as well as a diploma from the Committee of Physical Culture and Sports.


My childhood was cloudless and happy!

Summing up the above, I would also like to note that a popular pop artist, giving interviews, always says about his life path:

This, probably, was the great wisdom of the parents, who, despite the incredible trials that befell them, were able to raise their children in love and harmony, instill in them human qualities, and did not allow them to become angry at an unjust society.

Say what you don't, but the fate of an actor is an amazing thing. Everyone comes to the profession on their own fateful road. Some, like Efim Shifrin, know from childhood that they will become artists … Others, like his colleague Yuri Galtsev, go in a roundabout way. Not many people know that the famous comedian throughout the country dreamed of becoming an astronaut, and not only dreamed of it …

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