This year, tickets for the Slavianski Bazaar went on sale earlier than usual, with the first appearing in Vitebsk box offices, and online via www.ticketpro.by and www.kvitki.by, on March 20th. Tickets for the opening and closing ceremonies were available, as were those for the two final days of the Vitebsk-2015 International Pop Song Performers Contest, and for solo concerts by Yelena Vaenga, Valeria, Irina Allegrova, BI-2 band, Grigory Leps and Valery Meladze.
The Director of the International Slavianski Bazaar in Vitebsk Festival of Arts, Alexander Sidorenko, believes that this year’s programme takes into account various tastes. He explains, “The Parade of Smiles, featuring Alexander Oleshko, Valentin Gaft and Gennady Khazanov, is a wonderful show. Undoubtedly, youngsters will be delighted with the Europa Plus concert, which will feature Sergey Lazarev, Nyusha, Sak Noel (Spain) and Fly Project (Romania). The Golden Hits programme, with Valery Leontiev, Pesnyary group and British Eruption group, is aimed at the older generation, as is our evening with Alexandra Pakhmutova.”
As a result of the great organisation, the event boasts an abundance of young performers: from various TV-projects and those whose hits are broadcast often on popular radio stations (e.g., Natali, Yulia Savicheva, M-Band, and Teo). 2015 is the Year of Youth in Belarus and, of course, the 70th anniversary of the Great Victory: to be marked during the solemn opening of the Slavianski Bazaar. As is traditional, guests will be invited to theatrical meetings and a town of craftsmen. Meanwhile, On Seven Winds street art fest will be making its debut, presenting street theatres, musicians, poets, performers and artists. Among them will be Vitebsk’s Koleso (Wheel) Folk Theatre, as well as colleagues from Russia, Ukraine and Moldova.
The expert council at this ‘festival in the festival’ will be headed by famous French theatrical critic Floriane Gaber, while the Vitebsk-2015 Pop Song Performers Contest judges will be headed by Honoured Figure of Arts of Azerbaijan Polad Bülbüloğlu. The children’s contest jury will be headed by People’s Artist of Russia Dmitry Malikov.
Festival Director Alexander Sidorenko is convinced that the event’s traditions should be developed, taking into account contemporary trends. He notes, “Over the last two years, we’ve changed the stage design of the summer amphitheatre, adjusting for TV broadcasting. This year, we’ll do the same at the Vitebsk Concert Hall, which is hosting the finals of the children’s musical contest and the semi-final of the adult competition. In our opinion, the semi-final stage enhances the level of intrigue while raising the bar in terms of quality.”
In order to communicate with foreign colleagues and share experience, the organisers of the Slavianski Bazaar plan to hold a conference this summer, in Vitebsk, devoted to the international festival movement.
At the Vitebsk-2015 International Pop Song Performers Contest, Belarus is being represented by National Academic Symphony and Pop Music Orchestra soloist Valeriya Gribusova; Russia is represented by Sofia Muratova. Stefaniya Sokolova, from Minsk, and Yelena Titova, from Mogilev, as well as Veronika Ustimova, from Ulyanovsk, and Sofia Lopukhova, from Ryazan, are singing in the children’s contest.
By Sergey Golesnik