The Nevsky Wall

About  -  Character Profiles

Alex Rostov (Alesha)
Brother to Viktor, son to Elena and Anton. Studied science at university, before he was forced to leave. Tall, lean, with an angular face. A cameraman at Lenfilm studio. Also works for the Leningrad Newsreel Studio. Served with the Red Army as a soldier and cameraman in the Finnish campaign (Winter War) of early 1940. His experiences and the fate of his father have left him embittered, distrustful, and politically pragmatic.

Viktor Rostov (Vitya)
Brother to Alex, son to Elena and Anton. Married to Marina, father to Vasha, 7 years old. Served in the Winter War, alongside his brother, where he was seriously injured. A large, imposing man, an accomplished athlete in his youth, he works as a truck driver in the city fire brigade. Not unusual to find him in the beer hall, drinking with old army buddies.

Vera Mizina (Veroschka)
A young doctor working at the Leningrad Children’s Hospital. Has a long and complicated romantic history with Alex. They met as teenagers in school, where they shared an interest in the sciences. Coming from a chaotic family life, she grew very close to Alex’s parents. Intelligent, well-read, and self-assured, she is the optimist to his sceptic.

Elena Rostova (Mama, Mamochka)
Mother to Alex and Viktor. Wife of Anton. She studied and then taught at the Leningrad Conservatory (counting Prokofiev as a classmate and Shostakovich, briefly, as a pupil) until 1937. She makes a modest living giving music lessons to the children of party leaders and the well-to-do (and to Viktor’s son, Vasha). Lives in a communal apartment near the Con- servatory, and has a cat named Zuzu.

Anton Rostov (Papa)
Father to Alex and Viktor. Husband to Elena. Originally trained as an architect, he worked as an engineer in a team that designed industrial complexes. Always referred to Alex as “little sir”. Wore round spectacles. Tall, lanky, gregarious and a born story-teller.

Larissa Tarkova
A leading actress at Lenfilm Studio. Slight of figure, her stock in trade is wide-eyed teenage characters, though she’s nearly forty. Worked her way up through ambition and strategic connections with powerful men. Charming and crude as required, with a tough veneer that masks a simple country girl.

Boris Gamerev
Highly-placed party official with responsibility over some aspects of the film industry. Petty and thoroughly corrupt, he has been a benefactor of both Alex and Larissa. A small, nondescript man with delicate features, well-dressed at all times, capable of harboring grudges.

Old Nicosian
Yardman (building superintendent/janitor) at Elena’s apartment block.

Kyrill Sharmadze
Viktor’s old friend and comrade-in-arms.

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