Voices from Russia

Saturday, 25 October 2014

A Photo Essay… Furry Custodians of the Hermitage Treasures

00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 01. 25.10.14

The Hermitage cats are a living symbol of St Petersburg. Not content with simply showing their pictures, this series offers the lowdown on each of them. The first is Assol, at the Nicholas Staircase, a spruce and sociable, yet bashful, young lady. Evening often finds her on the Palace Embankment, gazing pensively at the ships gliding along the Neva.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 02. 25.10.14

Luchik, in the Winter Palace. A striking Siberian tomcat, his fur boasts the hue of what people in Piter call the “Neva Masquerade” hue. An avid football fan, on match day he always bags the best spot to watch his favourite side, FK Zenit.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 03. 25.10.14

Pingva, in the Pavilion Hall. An elderly cat robed in austere black-and-white, descended from palace stock. This cat was born to guard the Hermitage. The modest sombre black-and-white livery is evidence of her aristocratic roots. She shuns feline company in favour of solitude, preferring to live apart from her fellows in the cattery.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 04. 25.10.14

Gauguin, in Palace Square, across from the General Staff building. This brightly coloured cat seems to have sprung from a canvas by the French painter himself. Life’s travails developed in him the most extraordinary skills. Gauguin knows only too well where the provisions are and how to get them, using his ability to open (and close!) any door.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 05. 25.10.14

Francesca, on the Jordan Staircase. Proud of her famous namesake, she performs her own version of arias from the eponymous opera in the dead of night in the museum vaults. Anyone who strokes her trichromatic coat gets special treatment.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 06. 25.10.14

Vaksa, on the Jordan Staircase. The demure Vaksa suffers from poor eyesight; she isn’t overly fond of strangers, and rarely leaves the Hermitage grounds. However, she’s never short of work… fondly rubbing herself against the feet of employees, this near-wholly black cat has polished their shoes to a shine for many years.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 07. 25.10.14

Kisanya, in the Gallery of the History of Ancient Painting. A cordial hostess, Kisanya pays attention to all guests of the Hermitage, who, in summer, obligingly help this voluble gourmet acquire a rounded figure.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 08. 25.10.14

Lipa, on  Soviet Staircase. The self-sufficient Lipa is the very essence of catness, taking herself for strolls and preferring to observe proceedings from the shelter of a tree.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 09. 25.10.14

Rio-Rita, near the Alexander Column. A graceful, expressive, and unusually melodious Abyssinian cat with a wild hue. In anticipation of human caresses, her body becomes like a bouncing ball, her tail and hind legs performing a kind of dance. When she rubs up against your legs, resistance is futile.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 10. 25.10.14

Tikhon, in the Large Italian Skylight Hall. Named after the pagan god of fate, old-timer Tikhon is extremely discreet and thorough. As fate itself would have it, they brought Tikhon from the General Staff building to the Great Hermitage, where he became the unofficial leader of all the palace cats.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 11. 25.10.14

Caspar, in the Raphael Loggias. A legendary guard and photographic star, he often wanders into camera shots of the most vivid landscapes. Named after German landscape artist Caspar David Friedrich, this romantic feline soul chooses the most picturesque surroundings for his perambulations.

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14 October 2014

Yuri Molodkovets

Russia Behind the Headlines

http://rbth.com/multimedia/pictures/2014/10/14/12_custodians_of_the_hermitage_treasures_40589.html

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Sunday, 24 March 2013

24 March 2013. RIA-Novosti Infographics. Global Event “Earth Hour”: History, Purpose, Participants

00 RIA-Novosti Infographics. Global Event 'Earth Hour'. History, Purpose, Participants. 2013

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Click here for an “Earth Hour” image gallery

The World Wildlife Fund sponsors “Earth Hour” annually. On the last Saturday in March, at 20.30 local time, all participants turn off lights and electrical appliances for an hour. This is the fifth “Earth Hour” held in Russia; last year, about 20 million people in Russia took part in it. According to WWF, about 70 Russian cities will participate in the action in 2013. The WWF specifically mentioned that Moscow, St Petersburg, Murmansk, Arkhangelsk, Lipetsk, Serpukhov, Vladivostok, Krasnoyarsk, Voronezh, Irkutsk, Krasnodar, Vologda, Nizhny Novgorod, and Syktyvkar would have special events. For the first year, Novy Urengoy will take part.

In Moscow, on 23 March, more than 80 buildings will plunge into darkness for an hour. On Saturday, the main attractions of St Petersburg… the Winter Palace, Palace Square, and the Petropavlovsk Fortress… will turn off their architectural and artistic lighting. The same thing would happen at St Petersburg State University, as well as at Troitsky Bridge, Blagoveshchensky Bridge, Bolsheokhtinsky Bridge, and Aleksandr Nevsky Bridge.

A giant ball, symbolising planet Earth will be set on fire in Nizhny Novgorod on Rozhdestvenskaya Street. The organisers of the action said, “The contours of the Earth’s continents would burn only for a short while, thus, presenting a representation of the limited and exhaustible basic resources used by mankind”. The event will take place on Markin Square near Rozhdestvenskaya Street. Residents of Krasnodar shall place candles outside a shopping mall on Stasov Street. The candles will have the inscription “Kuban +” as a symbol that the Krasnodar Krai joined the “Earth Hour” event. The shopping mall will turn off all its lights and signs.

23 March 2013

RIA-Novosti

http://ria.ru/infografika/20130322/928492089.html

http://en.rian.ru/infographics/20130323/180186908/Earth-Hour.html

Sunday, 15 June 2008

15 June 2008. A Shot of Culture, if you please…

Programmes of the year of France in Russia and the year of Russia in France to be presented in Paris

Muriel Mayette, director of the Comédie-Française

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The programmes of the Year of France in Russia and the Year of Russia in France shall be presented in Paris later today. Under an agreement between the leaders of the two countries, large-scale cultural events shall be staged simultaneously in 2010. An exhibition entitled Holy Russia in Paris shall be the culmination of the event. A tour of the Comédie-Française theatre troupe in Russia is one of the French offerings.

10 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28229&cid=51&p=10.06.2008

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Painting by Natalia Goncharova fetched record price at Russian art auction at Sotheby’s

A Still Life with Peonies

Natalia Goncharova

1900s-10s?

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A Still Life with Fruits by the early-20th-century artist Natalia Goncharova fetched a record price of 2.28 million pounds (105.71 million roubles. 2.881 million euros. 4.446 million USD) at yesterday’s Russian art auction at Sotheby’s. The Winter Landscape by Ivan Aivazovsky went for 555,000 pounds (25.742 million roubles. 702,329 euros. 1.082 million USD), seven times that of the start-up price. Zinaida Serebryakova’s Nude was sold for more than a million pounds (46.383 million roubles. 1.265 million euros. 1.95 million USD), about five times higher than expected. The auction’s organisers say it pushed a plank for Russian art sales further up.

10 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28266&cid=51&p=10.06.2008

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The Prince Lobanov-Rostovsky collection bought for the Konstantin Palace

Aleksei Lobanov-Rostovsky (1824-96), diplomat, scholar, and art collector

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The charitable foundation that funded the recent restoration of the Konstantin Palace near St Petersburg bought a world-famous collection of Russian art, namely the collection of Prince Lobanov-Rostovsky. The collection is the second world-famous collection of Russian artworks that’s due to be put on display at the Konstantin Palace. Last year, the Palace obtained the collection of Mstislav Rostropovich and Galina Vishnevskaya.

10 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28240&cid=87&p=10.06.2008

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10th International Beer Festival due in Moscow

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Not exactly from this festival… a funny beer ad, though.

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The 10th International Beer Festival is due in Moscow from the 14th to the 22nd of this month. Guests to the event are welcome to taste up to 130 sorts of beer by more than 20 breweries. The visitors will be likewise welcome to a retrospective exhibition of beer and to a beer museum featuring a great number of exhibits. Another highlight of the event is a firework festival, a highlight that’ll be around every day until the beer festival is over.

10 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28240&cid=87&p=10.06.2008

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Moscow prepared to play host to next year’s Eurovision music contest

Yevgeny Plyushchenko (1982- ), Olympic championship figure-skater

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2009 Eurovision contestant, Sakis Rouvas (1972- ) from Greece

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The Moscow city government said that the city is prepared to play host to next year’s Eurovision international music contest, if Moscow is chosen as the venue for the event. Russia qualified for the right to host the competition following Russian singer Dima Bilan’s recent victory in Belgrade. Dima performed the song Believe Me accompanied by dancing by the world-famous Olympic champion figure-skater, Yevgeny Plyushchenko, and the playing of Hungarian violinist Edvin Marton, who played a Stradivarius, ensured him a record 272 points. So far, the venue for Eurovision-2009 hasn’t yet been determined. The likely candidates are Moscow, St Petersburg, and Sochi.

11 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28300&cid=51&p=11.06.2008

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Pushkin Museum shall open an exhibition in Tokyo of pictures by Rodchenko

Dance: An Objectless Composition

Aleksandr Rodchenko

1915

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At the beginning of 2010, Moscow’s Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts shall treat art lovers in Tokyo to an exhibition of pictures by the Russian avant-garde painter, graphic artist and photographer Aleksandr Rodchenko. The Tokyo newspaper Asahi is expected to offer its sponsorship for the project at talks in Moscow next month. This was confirmed by the chief curator of the Pushkin Museum, Dr Irina Antonova.

11 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28314&cid=51&p=11.06.2008

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International band festival in St Petersburg dedicated to Russia Day

Golubiye Bereti (The Blue Berets), A Russian Army rock band

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An international brass band festival in St Petersburg is dedicated to Russia Day. The combined orchestra will march in a grand procession along the Nevsky Prospekt to lend a festive atmosphere to the city on Thursday, 12 June. Last on the holiday agenda are several extravaganza concerts at sports complexes and concert halls. Also on Thursday, the Palace Square in front of the Winter Palace shall host a gala concert of Russian pop stars to the accompaniment of military bands.

11 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28292&cid=87&p=11.06.2008

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Open-air jazz festival kicks off near Moscow

Charlie Hunter (1967- ), great American jazzman

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More than 50 well-known jazz bands from different countries shall perform at an open-air jazz festival that kicked off at the Arkhangelskoye estate and museum near Moscow today. The program covers all genres, swing, lounge, funk, ethno-jazz, fusion, and even jazz-rock. Russia is represented by Igor and Oleg Butman, Aleksei Kozlov with his Arsenal band, and the Billy’s Band group. There will be a competition of young jazzmen. Jazz lovers are in for a real treat, an exclusive concert by a legendary American jazz ensemble, the Charlie Hunter Trio.

12 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28339&cid=51&p=12.06.2008

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Noah’s Ark International Film Festival opens in Chechen capital

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The Noah’s Ark International Film Festival opens in the Chechen capital of Grozny later today. It is aimed at bringing closer people of various nationalities, faiths, and culture. Among the guests of the festival are Hollywood stars Mark Dacascos and Armand Assante. The jury has selected 44 films from 21 countries. The organisers hope to stage the festival annually.

13 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28353&cid=51&p=13.06.2008

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Memorial to Tsaritsa Yekaterina Velikaya unveiled in Sevastopol

An Equestrian Portrait of Grand Princess Yekaterina Alekseyevna (later Tsaritsa Yekaterina Velikaya)

Georg Christoph Grooth

1746

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After two days of picketing by City Hall deputies and Cossacks, a memorial to Tsaritsa Yekaterina Velikaya was unveiled in Sevastopol on Sunday. City Hall initiated the move despite Kiev’s unhappiness with the installation, which was initially expected on Saturday. Sevastopol was founded as the main base for the Russian Black Sea Fleet, which recently marked its 225th anniversary.

15 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28393&cid=51&p=15.06.2008

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Russian writer grabbed one of the most prestigious European literary prizes

Lyudmila Ulitskaya (1943- ), Russian novelist

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Russian writer Lyudmila Ulitskaya grabbed one of the most prestigious European literary prizes, the Grinzane Cavour Prize, for her novel Sincerely Yours, Shurik. The awards ceremony was held on Saturday in a medieval castle located on the outskirts of the Italian city of Torino. Previously, Ulitskaya’s other works were also much admired by the reading public in Italy, whose youth jury jointly with students from MGU and St Petersburg State University awarded Ulitskaya the prize.

15 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28394&cid=51&p=15.06.2008

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