A puppet theater in the Russian city of Perm is set to open a museum within its premises. One would naturally assume it is going to display puppets, however that would be the wrong idea.
The new museum will be dedicated to the history of the Soviet secret police’s prison. The Museum of NKVD Prison №2 that is due to move inside these walls will fit here perfectly.
The building was constructed in 1871 as a transit prison behind the city gate. The prison was rebuilt in 1950s by architects from Leningrad and was given to the puppet theater. Former prison cells were used as back rooms and storage. However no attributes of the prison, such as bars or plank beds remained in the building.
Volunteers from Russia, Norway, Canada and Poland are holding the restoration of the interiors. When they have finished, the Federal Correctional Service will take it on. They will provide the necessary prison attributes to make the interiors truly authentic.
Such prison museums are not a rarity in Russia; the same city of Perm already has Perm-36, a memorial museum of political repressions. However a puppet theater with a prison museum in the back will definitely become an original phenomenon.