By Yuri Chernyakevich
Ancient Bykhov’s hosting of the 20th Day of Belarusian Written Language has entertained around 2,500 guests. The opening and closing ceremonies of the Day of Belarusian Written Language, alongside the awards ceremony for the winners of the national Best Work of Literature-2012 contest, were notable in their solemnity. For the first time, the hymn of the Day of Belarusian Written Language rang out, and the previous hosts of the event were celebrated in their own special festival. Book and press presentations were held, celebrating new publishing projects, while the Literary Portraits event gathered participants from Belarus and abroad.
The local stadium hosted the Orchestra of National Instruments (name after L. Ivanov), as well as the National Academic Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Theatre, ending with a grand firework display.
Bykhov’s Regional Centre of Culture ceremonially opened its doors on 31st August, following major reconstruction; it now bears a bas-relief plaque honouring writer Boris Streltsov — a well-known native of the Bykhov District. The venue hosted a competition for young readers entitled Live Classics, alongside the Bykhov Readings conference and a book launch for Barkulabovskaya Chronicles.
The town was buzzing with such activity that it’s impossible for anyone to have been bored. The Synagogue joined forces with Bykhov Castle in hosting an exhibition entitled Sources of Historical Heritage. Creative groups, national associations, and the Mogilev Regional Drama and Comedy Theatre (named after W. I. Dunin-Marcinkiewicz) helped entertain guests with a programme which included the History Wheel drama and holiday the Knightly Festival in Bykhov Castle .
Recently renovated Rodina cinema, celebrating its centenary, screened Cinema of My Country for the festival, using its new 3D equipment. It also hosted an international festival of animation: Animaevka.
The area around the city’s fountain was thronged with people for displays of ancient Belarusian dancing. The Festival Mogilev Region event united visitors and ‘honoured’ grandmothers in the joyful activity of learning the dances performed by our ancestors hundreds of years ago. Meanwhile, teenagers enjoyed a modern dance-off on Bykhov’s Oktyabrskaya Square: ‘DANCE-vertep’. Children of all ages were thrilled to take part in games and contests, including an art competition.
One of the most unexpected features of the holiday was a CIS and Baltic States record-breaking parachute jump and flag jump, performed by Pavel Novitsky, of Mogilev’s Flying Club. He spread a huge 32m x 18.5m flag of Belarus over Bykhov. Mogilev specialists spent almost three days making the flag, using 450 metres of fabric, weighing 60kg. The flag has now been presented to the Hall of Olympic and Sports Glory of the Mogilev Region.
Needless to say, Bykhov also hosted writers from around the globe for the wonderful festival. Writers from Belarus, Russia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Lithuania and Serbia recently took part in the round-table meeting Consonance: Language and Literature in the Context of Historical and Cultural Heritage. The meeting included a presentation of the Consonance of Hearts project, which features works of art from Belarusian and CIS writers. The release coincides with the Presidency of Belarus over the Commonwealth of Independent States.