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Saint Petersburg theatres freeze out Putin satire

Theatres in Saint Petersburg have refused to stage a satirical play on local-boy-made-president Vladimir Putin, the Moscow theatre responsible for its original production said Tuesday.

“In Saint Petersburg we’ve been prevented from staging the play on Vladimir Putin” entitled “Berlusputin”, a Russian adaptation of a work by Italian playwright Dario Fo called L’anomalo Bicefalo, Teatr.doc said on its internet site.

The play imagines what might happen if half of former Italian prime minister and Putin buddy Silvio Berlusconi’s brain was transplanted into the Russian strongman’s head after an accident.

One of the theatres, the Gaza House of Culture, termed the play “an undesirable subject”, the ground-breaking Teatr.doc house said.

“They don’t want to be associated with a political play,” Teatr.doc artistic director Mikhail Ugarov told Moscow Echo radio.

Putin, currently Russia’s prime minister, was elected to a third presidential mandate in March, and will take over at the Kremlin on May 7.