Born in Moscow in an acting family. Honored Artist of the RSFSR (11/27/1981). People's Artist of the RSFSR (04/18/1988). His grandfather, Nikolai Livanov (stage name Izvolsky), was an actor at first in provincial, then metropolitan theaters. Father, Boris Nikolaevich Livanov (1904-1972), is an outstanding actor who played about 40 roles in the Art Theater and 30 in the cinema. Frequent guests in the house of the Livanovs were Kachalov, Pasternak, Dovzhenko, Cherkasov, Tarkhanov, Konchalovsky. He studied at the men's school number 170, then, from 1950 to 1954 - at the Moscow secondary art school. After graduating from art school, he entered the B.V.Schukin Theater School. In addition to mastering the intricacies of acting, he tried his hand at directing - he put Yuri Olesha (thesis) on the studio stage of “Three Fat Men” and designed the performance himself. The music for the play was written by Gennady Gladkov, a classmate and schoolmate, and in the future, a wonderful composer, co-author of V. B. Livanov for many works in film, theater and animation.