One of the most successful theatrical works of Boris Kustodiev were sketches for the play "Flea" of E.I. Zamyatin (1925, Moscow Art Theatre 2nd, 1926, Leningrad Bolshoi Drama Theater). According to the memoirs of the play director A.D. Dikiy:
"It was so bright, so exact, that my role of a director receiving sketches was reduced to zero - I had nothing to correct or reject. It seemed as if he (Kustodiev) was in my heart, overheard my thoughts, read Leskov story with my eyes, and imagined it in the stage form exactly in the same way as I did. ... I have never had such a full inspiring oneness of mind with the artist, as during the work on the play "Flea". I cognized the whole meaning of this unit, when on the stage there were put Balagan bright scenery of Kustodiev and props made according to his sketches. The artist led the whole performance after him. It seemed as if he took the first party in the orchestra
that obediently and sensitively sounded in unison"
(Lebedeva B. Kustodiev. Time. Life. Creativity. - M .: Publishing House "Children's Literature"
(Det. Lit.), 1984. - p. 141.)