Giuliano da Empoli


Laura de Jong

Wednesday 10 May

20.00 (doors open 19.30)

€ 7.50

BorderKitchen, Kerkstraat 11

Giuliano da Empoli brings his bold Putin novel to Border Kitchen
10 May, 20.00: @ BorderKitchen


Éditions Gallimard

It’s a bold move to imagine a fictionalised Russian President Vladimir Putin in today’s highly-charged geo-political environment, but that’s exactly what Italian-Swiss essayist, writer, and former political advisor Giuliano da Empoli has done in his novel, The Wizard of the Kremlin. And his gamble has paid off, with the novel achieving bestseller status in France.

The Wizard of the Kremlin – published in Dutch as De Kremlinfluisteraar last October – takes the reader to the dark heart of power in Putin’s Russia, where oligarchs and confidants battle it out for a slice of money and power. We meet Vadim Baranov, a former theatre director and reality show producer who becomes the primary ideologue for the Putin regime. Chief orchestrator of the violence, manipulation and disinformation that constitutes Putin's power, Baranov has a front row seat to the defining moments in modern Russian history, including efforts to sow division in Ukraine. But what happens when his rapport with the new tsar begins to show cracks?

Da Empoli is the director of the Volta think tank in Milan and teaches at Sciences Po in Paris. The Wizard of the Kremlin is partly based on conversations he had with real-life former Kremlin spin doctor, Vladislav Surkov.

De Kremlinfluisteraar