Voices from Russia

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Ded Moroz to Feature in Tajik New Year Festivities After All

ded moroz


Ded Moroz (Russian for “Grandpa Frost”) will make it onto Tajikistan’s TV screens this New Year after all. A state media boss in the predominately-Muslim former Soviet nation announced earlier this week that he’d would ban Ded Moroz this year… a cheerful white-bearded figure equivalent to Father Christmas… as he isn’t in keeping with local traditions. However, Mahmadsaid Ubaidulloev, the influential mayor of the capital city, Dushanbe, put an end to that killjoy move and insisted that he be part of the festive celebrations. In recent years, Ded Moroz and other associated traditions, which are a legacy of Tajikistan’s history as a former Soviet republic, came under fire from hardline Muslims. The state broadcasting head, in announcing the Ded Moroz prohibition, said that New Year’s Eve programming would feature music, singing, dancing, and countdown festivities, but that they couldn’t show alcohol consumption. A Dushanbe city hall source insisted that no one slapped a ban, official or otherwise, on traditional New Year symbols, which typically include Ded Moroz and his comely granddaughter Snegurochka.

18 December 2013




Tuesday, 25 December 2012

25 December 2012. VOR Presents… Santa Claus and other Aliases of Father Frost

00a christmas. Ded Moroz. 25.12.12

Ded Moroz (Grandpa Frost) is a traditional gift-bearing Slavic character who makes his appearance during the New Year celebrations with a big goody bag full of presents for kids. Yet, he isn’t the only one who has such a generous habit.


00b christmas. santa claus. 25.12.12

One of the most famous of Father Frost’s colleagues is Santa Claus, with his fur-trimmed red jacket, white-cuffed pants, and a matching cap. His outfit isn’t as old as one might think; it stems from Coca-Cola Christmas advertising, which popularised this image in the 1930s.


00c christmas. Joulupukki. Finland. santa claus. 25.12.12

In Finland, this character is better known as Joulupukki.


00d christmas. Sinterklaas. Netherlands. santa claus. 25.12.12

In the Netherlands, he appears under the alias of Sinterklaas.


00e christmas. Julenisse. Lapland. santa claus. 25.12.12

The woods of legendary Lapland in northernmost Sweden and Norway are home to Julenisse, a hunch-backed little old man with a potato-shaped nose. Southern Norway and Denmark can boast a similar gift-delivering spirit of Christmas called Tomte Gnome.


00f christmas. Père Noël. France. santa claus. 25.12.12

France has two Santa Clauses for good and bad kids respectively. The good one, called Père Noël, carries a basketful of presents, whilst the strict one, named Père Chalande, wears a fur cap and a warm travel cloak and whips naughty children.


00g christmas. Babbo Natale. Italy. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Italian Father Christmas is called Babbo Natale.


00h christmas. Olentzero. Basque. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Basques call their Christmas wizard Olentzero. He wears homespun clothes and carries around a bottle of good Spanish wine.


00i christmas. Mos Craciun. Romanian. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Romanians call him Mos Craciun.


00j christmas. Kysh Babai. Tartar. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Tatar Santa Claus, Kysh Babai, goes around with a relative of Snegurochka (Snow Maiden) named Kar-Kyzy.


00k christmas. Hızır-İlyas. Turkey. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Muslim Santa Claus is an old man in a red cap, a green robe strewn with flowers, and a matching green scarf. His name is Hızır-İlyas and he brings presents in early May.


17 December 2012

Voice of Russia World Service


Monday, 26 November 2012

Ded Moroz Starts His Russia and Foreign Visitations


Ded Moroz set out on his traditional tour of Russia and foreign countries in the run-up to the New Year. In Salekhard, on Siberia’s Yamal Peninsula, he is due to meet his northern counterpart, Yamal Iri, to start the city’s New Year festivities and visit orphanages. On 29 November, he’s expected in Germany, Czechia, and Slovakia. He’ll meet his German counterpart, Weihnachtsmann, in Peine, to open a Christmas bazaar there. In Czechia, Dede will socialise with the members of the Russian community in Ostrava. He’s due in Slovakia on 4 December, as part of the Slovak celebration of St Mikuláš Day.

26 November 2012

Voice of Russia World Service


Saturday, 24 November 2012

24 November 2012. BelTA Infographics. The Difference Between Ded Moroz and Santa Claus


I needed to find something to “explain” the differences between our beloved Russian Ded Moroz and Santa Claus. I found this BelTA Infographic… increased the canvas size slightly, used more appropriate typefaces… and, zounds! You have the present graphic… that fills the bill very nicely, indeed.


30 December 2011




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