Voices from Russia

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

1.7 Million People to Take Part in May Day Trades Union Gatherings in Russia

00g KPU May Day 2012

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On Wednesday, Mikhail Shmakov, chairman of the Federation of Independent Trades Unions of Russia (FNPR), said that 1.7 million people would take part in May Day trades union gatherings in Russia. He pointed up that more than 1,000 cities and towns across Russia would hold rallies and marches to mark International Workers’ Day. Shmakov told us that the holiday began in 1889, to pay tribute to Chicago workers striking for an eight-hour day. He said that more than 80,000 people would take part in May Day celebrations in Moscow, which will include a large-scale rally of the FNPR, which will include members of United Russia and the all-Russia People’s Front. The KPRF, LDPR, A Just Russia, and various public organisations will hold their own May Day actions.

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Kamchatka Krai will hold the first Spring and Labour Day celebrations in Russia. The central square of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia’s easternmost city, will be the open-air venue for the festivities. A festive holiday programme will feature performances of amateur art groups and the city’s brass band. Moscow will host a large-scale procession of the FNPR, with participation by United Russia members, along with the all-Russia People’s Front. The KPRF, LDPR, A Just Russia, and various social movements will hold similar Labour Day events. Over a million and a half people intend to participate in May Day trades union events in Russia.

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Today, President Vladimir Putin will award the first people with the re-established Hero of Labour order. The ceremony will be at the Constantine Palace near St Petersburg. He will grant this distinction to five Russians “for outstanding performance in state, public, and economic activities”. Valery Gergiev, the outstanding conductor and art-director of the Mariinsky Theatre is one of the recipients. The Maestro trained a galaxy of world-class artists; much of his work is dedicated to supporting music ensembles and talented Russian artists. Vladimir Putin signed the decree on the re-establishment of this award on 29 March 2013. Now, the Hero of Labour is the second-highest mark of state recognition, after the Hero of Russia.

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Today, in St Petersburg, President Vladimir Putin said, “We need to make good work respected again, as this is the only way we can make Russia great”. He said this when he congratulated the first recipients of the reinstated Soviet-era title of Hero of Labour. Putin told the first five winners of the much-coveted award, “This country is proud to have people like you”. Amongst the first recipients were Valery Gergiev, artistic director of the Mariinsky Theatre, tractor driver Vladimir Melnik, prominent neurosurgeon Alexander Konovalov, and Rosatom metal worker Konstantin Chumanov. Chumanov said that Rosatom was now one of the world’s very best such companies, boasting a full portfolio of nuclear reactor orders. Mentioning the post-Fukushima safety level at existing nuclear power plants everywhere, President Putin said nuclear safety at Russian NPPs was second to none.

1 May 2013

Voice of Russia World Service

http://english.ruvr.ru/2013_05_01/1-7-mln-people-to-take-part-in-May-Day-trade-union-demonstrations-in-Russia/

http://english.ruvr.ru/2013_05_01/Spring-and-Labor-Day-in-Russia/

http://english.ruvr.ru/2013_05_01/Russia-s-President-Putin-awards-honorable-distinctions-to-Heroes-of-Labor/

http://english.ruvr.ru/2013_05_01/Putin-awards-insignia-of-distinction-to-the-first-Heroes-of-Labor/

Editor’s Note:

The title Hero of Labour is a Stalin-era title. You can have President Putin’s attitude to the Stalin era or you can have Victor Potapov’s attitude to the Stalin era. Most Russians (both at home and here in the diaspora) agree with President Putin, NOT Langley’s stooge Potapov… I wonder why…

BMD

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Tuesday, 25 December 2012

25 December 2012. Some of My Favourite Things. Swan Lake (complete) as Danced in 1990 by the Kirov Ballet of Leningrad

lopatkina and kuznetsov ballet

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In this 1990 production of Swan Lake, Yuliya Makhalina danced the role of Odette/Odile whilst Igor Zelensky danced the part of Prince Siegfried. This Kirov production includes the familiar happy ending in the final act where Siegfried fights and ultimately defeats the evil magician von Rothbart and is reunited with Odette at dawn.

As everyone knows, Russia has led world ballet since the time of Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov in the late tsarist Silver Age. Russia has set the standard, and the Bolshoi and Mariinsky/Kirov have been the leading dance troupes in the world. This was so in the Empire, it was so in the USSR, it’s so now in the transitional period of the Russian Federation, and it shall remain so with the re-emergence of a reunited Eurasian state.

Russian Ballet lived, Russian Ballet lives, and Russian Ballet shall live!

BMD

 

Saturday, 30 June 2012

30 June 2012. Sergei Yolkin’s World. The Service of the Muses Doesn’t Abide Laxity… Inclement Weather Doesn’t Deter It

The Service of the Muses Doesn’t Abide Laxity… Inclement Weather Doesn’t Deter It

Sergei Yolkin

2010

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Here’s a production of Sleeping Beauty by the Mariinsky

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Snowfall couldn’t upset the Washington tour of the St Petersburg Mariinsky Theatre. The public wasn’t afraid of a sudden onset of Russian-style winter conditions in the American capital. Many of them gave up trying to dig out their cars after several days of snowfall, so, they went to the theatre using the Metro and Metrobus. The ballet Sleeping Beauty, which used the classic 1952 choreography of Konstantin Sergeyev, was a great success, and not only because Mariinsky prima ballerina Diana Vishneva performed the role of Aurora. The audience gave “bravos” to Vladimir Shklyarova in the role of the Prince, Yekaterina Kondaurova in the role of good fairy, and the pair of Jana Selina and Grigory Popov in the roles of the White Cat and Puss n’ Boots. The theatregoers praised the set design and the costumes. Many of them cried out, as they were leaving the theatre, “What a stunning festival!” The Kennedy Center offered to exchange tickets for other performances of the Mariinsky and the Bolshoi to those frightened off by today’s frost or unable to get to the theatre on the snow-covered roads.

12 February 2010

Sergei Yolkin

RIA-Novosti

http://www.rian.ru/caricature/20100210/208527515.html

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Христос воскесе! Christ is Risen! Easter 2010 in Moscow and Kiev…

Kids at the Easter services at Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow

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157.5 million roubles (5.363 million USD 4.01 million Euros 3.518 million UK Pounds) are budgeted for the preparation of the Ninth Moscow Easter Festival, which will run from 4 April to 9 May, sources in the municipal administration told Interfax. Of this sum, 43.65 million roubles (1.486 million USD 1.111 million Euros 975,000 UK Pounds) (27.71 percent) are coming from the city of Moscow, 52.25 million roubles (1.779 million USD 1.33 million Euros 1.167 million UK Pounds) (33.17 percent) from the federal budget, and 61.6 million roubles (2.097 million USD 1.568 million Euros 1.376 million UK Pounds) (39.12 percent) are coming from other sources. This year, festival venues will include Poklonnaya Gora, the Moscow State Conservatoire, the hall of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, the Moscow International House of Music, the Tchaikovsky and Orkestrion concert halls, the State Historical and Cultural Museum of the Moscow Kremlin, and various churches and cathedrals. The festival programme includes more than 100 concerts in more than 30 Russian cities. The festival will host more than one thousand performers from Russia and 12 other countries. Organisers expect to distribute 35 percent of tickets for all events free of charge.

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First two selections from the Vigil by Sergei Rakhmaninov sung by the Chamber Choir of Smolny Cathedral

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In connection with the 65th anniversary of Victory Day in the Great Patriotic War, and as a part of the Festival programme, the Mariinsky Theatre Symphony Orchestra led by Maestro Valery Gergiev will perform in Yaroslavl, Kislovodsk, Krasnodar, Vladikavkaz, Voronezh, and Kursk, and in the hero cities of Moscow, St Petersburg, and Volgograd. By tradition, the orchestra will travel between these cities on a special train; the entire route spans 8,000 kilometres. The festival includes symphonic and choral offerings, as well as a week devoted to the art of bell-ringing. According to custom, the choirs will perform in orphanages, boarding schools, nursing homes, and veterans’ homes, in all, more than 20 charity concerts are planned as a part of the festivities. On 5 April, the gala choral concert programme opens in the hall of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour with the participation of the Symphony Orchestra and Choir of the Mariinsky Theatre, the Chamber Choir of Smolny Cathedral, and the Patriarchal Choir of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. The total choral programme will include concerts in 14 Moscow churches and nine Moscow concert halls, as well as venues in 17 regions of Russia. For the first time, this year’s choral programme is also being presented abroad, on 8 and 9 May, at the Vilnius Festival, the chorus of the Mariinsky Theatre will perform. The bell-ringing portion of the festival will take place in 46 Moscow churches, as well as the Ss Peter and Paul Cathedral of St Petersburg.

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Nationwide surveys run by the Yuri Levada Analytical Centre and Romir indicate that the overwhelming majority of Russians are going to commemorate Easter, the Resurrection of Christ, as an important Christian holiday on 4 April. To mark the day, Russians will bake traditional kulichi, decorate eggs, and make paskha (80 percent), visit the graves of departed relatives on Easter Sunday (40 percent) and go to worship services (20 percent). Conversely, the surveys show that the groups least interested in the Easter holiday are students (18 percent), young people under 25-years-old (11 percent), residents of medium-sized cities (100-500,000 people) (10 percent), and rural areas (10 percent). Sociologists told Interfax that more women than men are going to celebrate Easter on one form or another. The sole exception is going outside the home to visit others… that’s more typical of the masculine set. In the main, families, retirees, housewives and, in general, Russians over 55-years-old and rural residents will bake kulichi and decorate eggs. According to the Levada Centre, only 7 percent of Russians said that they wouldn’t celebrate Easter.

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Easter services on Sunday 4 April at Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow

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On Saturday night, with the blessing of Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias, a delegation of the Foundation of St Andrew the First-Called brought the Holy Fire from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem to Moscow. As is usual, hundreds of believers met the delegation at Vnukovo airport to light their lampadas from the sacred fire. From the airport, the Holy Fire was sent to churches in the city of Moscow, Moscow oblast, and other parts of the RF and the CIS. The delegation of the Foundation will deliver the Holy Fire to the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour for the Easter service celebrated by His Holiness Patriarch Kirill. “For the eighth time, we are honoured to bring the Holy Fire to Russia. We first carried out this initiative in 2003 with the blessing of the [Moscow Patriarchate], and it has since become an integral part of the lives of Orthodox Russians in both Russia and abroad”, Vladimir Yakunin, the head of the Foundation of St Andrew the First-Called, told Interfax- Religion. This year, the Foundation plans to deliver the Holy Fire from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre to Minsk, Riga, Tashkent, Bishkek, Tallinn, Baku, Derbent, St Petersburg, Barnaul, Belgorod, Volgograd, Voronezh, Yekaterinburg, Irkutsk, Kemerovo, Kostroma, Krasnoyarsk, Kursk, Lipetsk, Magadan, Murmansk, Nizhny Novgorod, Novosibirsk, Oryol, Perm, Ryazan, Pskov, Saratov, Stavropol, Tambov, Tula, Cheboksary, Yaroslavl, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Rostov-on-Don, Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, and Yakutsk. In addition, for the first time, the Foundation will bring the Holy Fire to Novy Ierusalime Monastery, which Patriarch Nikon Minin built according to the plan of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.

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Ordinary Orthodox folks at Easter services at Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow

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On Saturday night, before the beginning of the Easter service proper, the Holy Fire was brought to the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. The clergy in the church gathered and sang the appointed tropar three times, then, the holy gates were opened, and Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias solemnly processed from the altar with two bunches of Easter candles lit from the Holy Fire from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. His Holiness blessed all the believers in the church with the Holy Fire. “This Holy Fire was lit in the holy city of Jerusalem at the altar of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. It came to us and to our country to bless our people, to strengthen our faith, and to heal our ailments. May the light of Christ enlighten us all”, after the patriarch addressed these words to the parishioners in the church, then, the festive singing of the choir heralded a procession around the church. The believers present all lit their candles from the Holy Fire. According to ancient tradition, the procession ended with the exclamation Христос воскресе (Christ is risen)!

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President Dmitri Medvedev (1965- ), his wife Svetlana Medvedeva (1965- ), and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin (1952- ) at Easter services at Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow 

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President Dmitri Medvedev and his wife, and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, attended the Easter service at the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour served by Patriarch Kirill himself. The Patriarch gave the presidential couple and Mr Putin, as well as Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov, decorative Easter eggs; in his turn, the President gave His Holiness an icon of the Virgin. Before the service, a delegation brought the Holy Fire to the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, which came to Moscow late on Saturday night on a special flight from Jerusalem. National television broadcast the Easter services at the Cathedral all over Russia. Worldwide, some 30,000 parishes of the Moscow Patriarchate held worship services this evening.

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Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich attended Easter services at the Kievo-Pechersk Lavra. Before the service, Metropolitan Vladimir Sabodan of Kiev and all the Ukraine passed the Holy Fire to Mr Yanukovich. In addition, Prime Minister Nikolai Azarov, Vladimir Litvin, the Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada, Sergei Levochkin, the head of the presidential administration, and other members of the government were present at the church service served by the First Hierarch of the UOC/MP. After the end of the services, the Yanukovich family will share a festive Easter breakfast with Metropolitan Vladimir. For many years, attending the Easter services at the Kievo-Pechersk Lavra has been a tradition in the Yanukovich family.

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Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich (1950- )… he is bringing the Ukraine out of the schismatical and heretical hell of the last 20 years… God bless him!

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Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich, Prime Minister Nikolai Azarov, and Vladimir Litvin, the Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada, greeted fellow Little Russians on Easter. “May the great day of resurrection strengthen us as we go along the difficult path to justice, harmony, and well-being for everybody in our country. May the Lord give us the strength to lift our country from the rubble, so that every person and every family will have a better life free of anxiety”, according to Mr Yanukovich’s message posted on the official presidential website. Premier Azarov, in his message, said that Ukrainian people hope for a revival of the country after its severe ordeal, to improve their lives, and to seek justice. “In mutual respect, the government will labour at all times to ensure that the Ukrainian people see good changes in our country”, the Prime Minister’s address said. According to Mr Litvin, he has never before felt the need for a general expression of common unity, virtue, and harmony as he has felt it on this feast of the Resurrection. “May the light of Easter remind us that we can overcome trials and tribulations only through unity and love. Let them encourage and guide us to new good deeds, fortify our spiritual and bodily strength, and inspire in us enthusiasm, patience, and compassion, so that we can perform our Christian and civic duty in a decent manner”, Mr Litvin noted.

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Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev (1946- ) at Orphanage No. 15… His Holiness appears to have a special love for handicapped children… he is often photographed with them, more so than most other bishops… is there a disabled person in his family?

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On Easter Sunday, Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias visited Orphanage No 15 for mentally retarded children in Moscow. He donated rehabilitation equipment, bicycles, and toys for the children, and he gave each child the traditional Easter gifts of decorated eggs and kulichi, the official website of the Moscow Patriarchate reported. “At the Judgement, the Lord won’t ask us about our social position, nor about our salary, or about how we looked, or about where we lived, or whether we were completely healthy or we had aches and pains, he’ll only ask us if we helped other people. Today, I’m happy to be in an institution where people help others”, His Holiness said, in reference to the management and staff of the orphanage. Later, in an interview with reporters, he emphasised that the Church should seek to ensure that its social work was “significant in proportion all across the country, not merely for show, but because there’s a real need for a believer’s heart”. Currently, at Orphanage No 15, there are 440 children with disabilities. In the office of charity work, nine sisters of mercy and 14 volunteers care for the most severely immobilised children. There are weekly services in the orphanage’s chapel.

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Patriarch Kirill handing out Easter eggs to the kids

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An Orthodox hymn sung by an Abkhazian choir

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Choirs from Russia, the Ukraine, and Abkhazia will participate in a series of Easter concerts at the St Petersburg Academic Philharmonic, the press office of the City Committee for Culture said on Monday. The first concert will present the male choir of the Danilovsky Monastery in Moscow. They prepared a special programme entitled Пасха Христова (Christ’s Easter), which includes New Roman and Russian Easter hymns from medieval times to the present. In addition, the audience will hear lyrical and war songs, with religious and secular lyrics. On Tuesday, Petersburgers will have the chance to hear a concert of the State Choir of Abkhazia. They will perform Abkhaz folk songs and spirituals, the earliest of which date from the sixth century. On Thursday, a concert of the choir of the Kievo-Pechersk Lavra will complete the cycle of Easter concerts. Their concert program will include distinctive ancient chants of the monastery and festive Easter hymns and old religious poems in the Little Russian dialect.

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Choir of the Kievo-Pechersk Lavra singing O Russian Land

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The Holy Fire, delivered from Jerusalem to Moscow

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In Tskhinvali, South Ossetian President Eduard Kokoity passed a capsule with the Holy Fire, delivered to the republic from Jerusalem, to local clergy and faithful. According to our Interfax correspondent on the scene, a solemn service was held in the church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin in the capital of South Ossetia. Prior to this, the Foundation of St Andrew the First-Called brought the Holy Fire to Russia from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. At Vnukovo airport, Dmitri Medoyev, the ambassador of South Ossetia to the RF, received a portion of the Holy Fire. On the morning of 4 April, the Holy Fire was carried to South Ossetia.

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For the second consecutive year, bakers in Nizhny Novgorod prepared a 150-kilogramme (330-pound) kulich. It had a diameter and height of one metre (a tad less than 40 inches); it was blessed, and, then, ceremoniously served during a folk festival in honour of Easter in Sormovo Park. More than 3,000 willing guests ate their fill of the cake, the Nizhny Novgorod edition of the newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda wrote. In all, 200 confectioners worked on the kulich, it required 100 kilos (220 pounds) of flour, 30 kilos (66 pounds) of sugar, 20 kilos (44 pounds) of butter, 250 eggs, and 20 kilos (44 pounds) of candied fruit. It was topped with an egg-sugar glaze, with onion-domed cream cheese churches fixed into the frosting.

2 to 5 April 2010

Interfax-Religion

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=34961

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=34979

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=34989

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=34991

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=34992

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=34996

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=35000

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=35008

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=35011

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=35012

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=35016

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