On the way to three million

National Academic Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Theatre soloist Ilya Silchukov becomes two-millionth passenger to pass through Minsk National Airport this year

National Academic Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Theatre soloist Ilya Silchukov becomes two-millionth passenger to pass through Minsk National Airport this year, returning on Belavia from Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport
By Dmitry Ampilov

National Academic Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Theatre soloist Ilya Silchukov becomes two-millionth passenger to pass through Minsk National Airport this year, returning on Belavia from Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport

Belavia’s two millionth passengerIn the morning, Ilya stepped off the plane, met by quite a crowd. The Eugene Onegin star was surprised to receive his prize: a free flight with the Belarusian carrier and entrance to the VIP lounge. He admitted to feeling like a child receiving a gift from Ded Moroz. In fact, he thought he must be being filmed for the Rozygrysh (The Prank) show. As to how he’ll use the premium tickets, he told those gathered, “I have to fly quite often: about once a month — for business or on tour. I’m returning from recording Big Opera today; I’m one of ten participants on the programme for Russian Culture TV Channel.”

The Deputy Director General of the airport, Victor Paley, notes that, last year, it took a further two months to achieve the second millionth passenger, indicating that Minsk airport is busier than ever. He emphasises, “We’ve achieved this thanks to updating our terminal complex, installing a new baggage handling system, and purchasing new aero-technics. Belavia claims about 65 percent of total passenger flow here, but the airport is far from working at its full capacity of 5,000,000 annually. By the end of the year, we intend to have seen 2,500,000 passengers. The figure should rise to three million in 2015.”
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