Formation flying in Russia (and previously in the USSR), dates back to the creation of the Air Force after the communist revolution.
At every parade on the Red Square and at various airfields, different Air Force planes performed flypasts.
The first true aerobatic team was established in the 1930's and this team received the name "Red Five". They flew five I-16 airplanes and their name was derived from the formation aircraft which were painted in red. Surprisingly, the leader's aircraft retained an olive green paint scheme.
Red Five aerobatic team displayed simple maneuvers in formation and only performed rarely, just once or twice a year, at the Red Square parade and at the Tushino (near Moscow) air parade.
After the World War II, Soviet aerobatic teams again performed simple maneuvers in formation and again usually only at a few events. These formations included different numbers of aircraft in different groups. These included Yak-15s, MiG-15s and MiG-21s, with red-painted upper-surfaces and unpainted bottom-surfaces in natural aluminum, along with MiG-17s and MiG-19s painted with blue or grey at the bottom. These planes used smoke pods mounted on the bottom of the fuselage to enhance the maneuvers performed. The demonstrations were simple and included mostly fly-pasts and formation loop (but not barrel rolls) with a typical duration of about 15 minutes.
Excluding the "Red Five" team, no other Soviet aerobatic display team was officially given a name.
Most of the demonstration aircraft were drawn from 176th Air Regiment based at the Toplii Stan airfield near Moscow. Later in 1950, this unit became the 234th Air Regiment and, in 1952, they moved to their present home at Kubinka Air Base. In 1989, this air regiment became the 237th Air Regiment and, in 1992, it became the 237th Guards Proskurov Aircraft Demonstration Center.
The last air parade in the Soviet Union occurred at Domodedovo airfield in 1967.