Voices from Russia

Monday, 10 February 2014

A Multimedia Presentation. RIA Novosti Presents… The Brightest Moments of the Opening Ceremony of the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi (Part Two)

00 Sochi Olympics 01. 10.02.14

The second part of the show introduced viewers to Russian history and culture. This tableau is from the time of Tsar Pyotr Veliki.

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00 Sochi Olympics 02. 10.02.14

The main character in the presentation, the girl Lyubov (“Love”), participated in a folk performance with onion domes, amongst which were the stylised colourful domes of St Basil Cathedral. In one of the highlights of the show, the domes soared into the air and almost lined up in the order, along with the world-famous church on Red Square, which is one of the best-known symbols of Moscow. 

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00 Sochi Olympics 03. 10.02.14

Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev watched the ceremony in the company of figure skating coach Tatiana Tarasova.

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00 Sochi Olympics 04. 10.02.14

A ballet production based on the novel War and Peace by Lev Tolstoy was one of the most spectacular scenes.The dancers portrayed the first ball of Natasha Rostova to the music of Yevgeni Doga from the movie Мой ласковый и нежный зверь (My Affectionate and Tender Beast). Featured were prima ballerina Svetlana Zakharova of the Bolshoi Theatre and the famous choreographer Vladimir Vasiliev. 

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00 Sochi Olympics 05. 10.02.14

The ceremony needed 3,000 performers and 2,000 volunteers, who used 6,000 costumes. The total number of people involved in the ceremony was more than 9,200.

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00 Sochi Olympics 06. 10.02.14

The historical presentation continued; the romantic sublimity of the 19th century segued into the uncompromising 20th century… red tones heralded the revolutionary era and symbolised the epoch of constructivism. The model of a giant locomotive appeared under the dome of the stadium to the music of Sviridov‘s theme for Время, вперёд! (Time, Forward!).

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00 Sochi Olympics 07. 10.02.14

A scene portrayed the USSR‘s reconstruction after the VOV, with workers, slogans, and appeals of the Stalinist skyscaper era, accompanied by the Muslim Magomaev song Москва (Moscow).

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00 Sochi Olympics 08. 10.02.14

Young couples with prams and toddlers symbolised the Soviet baby boom, which occurred during 1981-83, that is, immediately after the 1980 Olympics.

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00 Sochi Olympics 09. 10.02.14

Famous ballerina Diana Vishnyova danced to the music of the ballet Swan Lake.

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00 Sochi Olympics 10. 10.02.14

World-renowned opera singer Anna Netrebko sang the Olympic hymn.

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00 Sochi Olympics 11. 10.02.14

Dancers during the pageant at the opening ceremony of 22nd Winter Olympic Games in Sochi.

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00 Sochi Olympics 12. 10.02.14

Famous tennis star Mariya Sharapova brought the Olympic flame into the stadium.

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00 Sochi Olympics 13. 10.02.14

Sharapova gave the torch to Yelena Isinbayeva, who passed it to Aleksandr Karelin, who gave it to Alina Kabaeva, who then handed over the torch to Irina Rodnina. Vladislav Tretyak solemnly took the torch from the hands of the famous figure skater. 

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00 Sochi Olympics 14. 10.02.14

Vladislav Tretiak and Irina Rodnina jointly lit the Olympic flame with a torch that had been in the International Space Station.

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00 Sochi Olympics 15. 10.02.14

Fireworks from 3,500 volleys capped the opening ceremony.

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8 February 2014

RIA-Novosti

http://ria.ru/sochi2014_news/20140208/993754184_993749410.html

 

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Saturday, 15 December 2012

Vishenvskaya… A Name that’ll Always be Remembered

rostropovich_vishnevskaya

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Final Scene of Yevgeni Onegin, with Georg Ots

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This is Tchaikovsky‘s romans Колыбельная (Kolybelnaya: Cradle Song)

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Casta Diva from Bellini‘s Norma

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 On Friday, the celebrated Russian opera singer Galina Vishnevskaya, who died on 11 December at the age of 86, was buried in Moscow. The burial ceremony began at 13.00 MSK at Novodevichy Cemetery. Vishnevskaya’s grave is near that of her husband, the great cellist Mstislav Rostropovich. By Orthodox tradition, before the funeral, the farewell ceremony was in the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. Before she died, the singer wanted to donate to the cathedral a treasured icon of St Nicholas the Wonderworker, but she didn’t do it. On the day of the farewell ceremony, her daughters Olga and Yelena did it for her.

Well-known opera singer Lyubov Kazkarnovskaya said, “The legendary couple of Vishnevskaya and Rostropovich will be remembered for generations as a symbol of devotion to Art. A fabulous generation, which knew how to serve Music and Theatre, and which knew the price of every single note, is leaving. She lived at the limit of love for her art”. Rostropovich and Vishnevskaya set the bar high, not only in their art, but also in their social life. In the 1970s, without hesitation, although they understood that they’d pay a price for it, they supported writer Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, when the authorities were harassing him. Solzhenitsyn’s widow Natalya said, “I highly value the close friendship between our families and I’ll always be grateful to Mstislav Rostropovich and Galina Vishnevskaya, as they helped Aleksandr in the most difficult period of his life”.

In their irksome exile, Vishneskaya wrote a book entitled Galina. She said, “I found salvation in it. I needed to tell people what happened to us and why”. The singer turned out to be an excellent storyteller. In later life, she also became known as a brilliant dramatic actress; she played the main role in the film Aleksandra by Aleksandr Sokurov. She played a common middle-aged Russian woman, who came to visit her grandson, who was an officer who serving in Chechnya. The film’s producer, Andrei Sigle, recalled, “She didn’t hesitate to go on location shooting, even though it was still a rather dangerous time there. It was also very hot, 56 degrees (133 degrees Fahrenheit), and it was very windy. However, she was very strong and set an example for us”.

The renowned composer Rodion Shchedrin came to Moscow to celebrate his birthday, but unfortunately faced this great loss, saying, “To me, Galina Pavlovna’s passing is a personal loss as we were very close friends throughout our lives. It’s a very bitter loss. Like the poet Voznesensky said, ‘We’re leaving, and this edict is everlasting’”. The Centre of Opera Signing, established by Vishnevskaya in Moscow ten years ago, has already brought up many talented singers. One of them was Badri Maisuradze, soloist of the Bolshoi Theatre, who said, “The generations of singers who were guided by her and Mstislav Rostropovich will never forget them. They’ll always be remembered”.

14 December 2012

Voice of Russia World Service

 http://english.ruvr.ru/2012_12_14/98036486/

Saturday, 9 June 2012

9 June 2012. Some of My Favourite Things… “Sleeping Beauty” at the Bolshoi

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Wednesday, 11 January 2012

11 January 2012. Video. “Absolute Pitch”… Eight Minutes on Swan Lake

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The first minute of this is taken up with a “talking head”… then, the rubber hits the road and there’s a nice mini-documentary on Tchaikovsky‘s Swan Lake. The narration’s in Russian, but the visuals and music keep the non-Russian-speaking very happy indeed.

This is an utter contrast to the tawdry and noisome toilet bowl “non-culture” of the US rightwing… the artistic higher culture of the Orthosphere lives… and it’s still the best! What do you want? Do you want the Best of the Bolshoi or the LDS Follies? I know what I want… and not a few of you agree with me…

BMD

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