Tatyana Zbirovskaya, or Tatyana Z
as she is known to people in the entertainment industry in
America (because no one can pronounce her last name), has
had a very eclectic background.
Originally from a small town in Siberia, of all places,
she grew up living a meager existence, with the childhood
dream of becoming an actress, when few people in that town
even owned a TV.
In the early 1970s, when Communism was at its strength,
most children aspired to be government officials, cosmonauts,
or steel workers, continuing in the footsteps of their parents.
Wanting to be an actress was like aspiring to be sent to
Siberia - unless you were already there!
Acting was considered a shameful way to earn a living, but
Tatyana was determined to let nothing stand in the way of
her dream. Fresh from high school she did try to live a "normal" Russian
life working at a factory, but it soon became apparent that
it was not for her.
At the tender age of 17 Tatyana went to Moscow and took
an entrance exam to one of the best acting schools in the
world. Out of many thousands of applicants only twenty were
accepted - and she was among the lucky ones.
She went on to receive her Masters Degree from the prestigious
Academy Of Arts, (GITIS), and was then hired by the esteemed
Mayakovsky Theatre in Moscow. A year later she moved on to
the equally prestigious Satiricon Theatre and performed there
for the next eleven years, earning her living as an actor
and becoming nationally known.
When her only son was diagnosed with an incurable disease,
Tatyana brought him to America hoping for a miracle, with
only one hundred dollars in her pocket and no knowledge of
English. Her son died when he was only nine years old. Despite
the heartbreak she stayed in this country determined to forge
a new life for herself.
Tatyana worked many jobs, amazingly receiving a second degree
in Computer Science, and supported herself as a computer
programmer while staying in touch with the world of entertainment
that she loved so much.
She worked nights as a stand-up comedian, and got acting
jobs in several studio and independent films, working with
such esteemed directors as Sidney Lumet and Woody Allen.
In 2006 she took a New York Film Academy Digital Filmmaking
course and produced a short film A Man of Honor that became
accepted into the 2007 "Short Film Corner" at
the Cannes Film Festival. This is her first film as a writer/director,
but definitely not her last.