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On the cover
7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope


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28 February - 6 March 2014

Ukraine History

A Stronghold of Rulers and Rebels

With the recent death toll jumping to nearly 100 and 1,000 injured, Hrushevskoho Street, one of the strongholds of EuroMaidans three-month-long protests, made headlines around the globe. It was here, on 19 January the countrys stand against government corruption, abuse of power, and the violation of human rights turned from peaceful protest to all-out revolution. Having witnessed much over the years, Hrushevskoho is a street with a history, and not only care of recent days.

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Ukraine Today
Acelebrity using their status and intelligence to influence public views and opinion is rarely seen in modern society, even less so in Ukraine. Here, the majority of celebs use their time, effort, and money to enhance or further their career rather than put their name to something that can do good for others. However, as EuroMaidan intensifies, some are making themselves heard and they fall either side of the EuroMaidan divide.
It used to be that when rebellion and revolution occurred, the intellectual, creative, and spiritual elite would be front and centre.

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Ukrainian Culture

When Walls Can Talk

People have been writing on walls since the dawn of civilisation, we call it graffiti, and ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. Sometimes it is merely the creator wanting to leave his or her mark; sometimes there is an underlying social or political reason. And it is due to the latter that graffiti has exploded across Kyiv in recent months. Anti dictator messages aside, we peel back a few layers of paint to look at graffiti in the city in general.

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My Kyiv

The highly recognisable artists group from Siberia with the very strange name The Blue Noses arrived in Kyiv for the final stage of the 10-day Shargorod project that brought together artists from Ukraine, Russia, Germany and Uzbekistan. Having made a bit of a name for themselves on the art scene, two of the guys from The Blue Noses, Vyacheslav Mizin and Alexandr Shaburov, were kind enough to give Whats On their views on whats happening in the contemporary post-Soviet art scene.

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Igor Iluk, director of the Carribean club, has been has been part and parcel of the Kyiv club life for 15 years. He started out studying at the University of Civil Aviation and since then has worked as a waiter, barman, administrator and of course club director. This week he got together with Whats On journalist Cosmos Okigbo Ojukwu to chat about his love for Kyiv, his business, his rejection of racism and his view that all races are equal and should work together as one family.

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Aleksey Antonyuk has been cutting hair for over fifteen years. Hairdressing started as a hobby, but he soon realised he could make a success of it. Luckily he is a positive minded guy with an optimistic view on life which helped him win through after initial difficulties. This week he shares his thoughts and experiences with Whats On Journalist Cosmos Okigbo Ojukwu.


At the beginning of the year a new song about unshaven deer had everyone smiling, and Whats On decided to find out who was behind the amusing and catchy ethnic song. What we found was Vitya Bronyuk, frontman of the TIK band, a decent, up-beat chap from the small city of Vinnitsa. His songs may be light-hearted, but he has serious views on music and the future of Ukraine. Working in the Cultural Council in Vinnitsa, he had many ideas on how education should be reorganised in Ukraine, and feels that we should all be more attentive to one another in such fast and busy times.


Irina Karavay is one of the most famous designers in the country, and has been a leading light in Ukrainian fashion for some years now. Through a lot of hard work and some serious dedication she is not only the owner of Karavay Design, but also of the Nota Bene clothes store in the centre of Kyiv. This talented young designer is confident that the local fashion scene is thriving and that Ukrainian design is becoming widely appreciated throughout Europe and the rest of the world. This week, Whats On journalist Cosmos Okigbo Ojukwu caught up with Irina to chat with her about her life and work in Kyiv.


Ukrainian born DJ Amadeus is a shining light on the New York club scene and sits near the top of any list of American DJs. Inspired by the likes of Paul van Dyk, Danny Tenaglia, Junior Vasques and Carl Cox, he has achieved great things with his own music creations. He says the secret of his success is that music is his calling, and his one true love in life.


Many people say that Vitaliy Kozlovskiy was lucky, that his rise to the top was quick and easy, but his road to fame was not as smooth and simple as people think. Having a deep love for both Lviv and Kyiv, Vitaliy now lives in the latter seeing it as a better base for his career and a more comfortable place to set up home.


Stylish young expat Karolina Patocki has worked all over the world in the past three years and is currently in Kyiv as country manager for Oxford Business Group in charge of their Emerging Ukraine 2007 investment guide. But while she spends her days researching the markets or meeting with the countrys leading industrial and political figures, her experience of life in the Ukrainian capital extends well beyond current affairs and money matters. A Polish Canadian with a love of salsa and a passion for todays Ukraine, she is a firm believer in the old adage that if you want to enjoy your time as an international executive you need to tap into the local culture.

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When textile kingpin Poul Yahn first stated visiting this part of the world Khrushchev was in charge at the Kremlin and Gagarin had yet to become the first man in space. Several years ago the affable Dane was thinking of retiring when he saw a gap in the Ukrainian furniture market. Enter Jusk, one of the worlds top furniture firms and an excuse for Paul to continue to visit a country which he has seen transformed.


As head of the Nigerian Community in Kyiv, a branch of the nationwide Nigerian Community in Ukraine, it is the role of Dr. Clement Ojum to help his fellow countrymen in anyway he can, particularly in the field of learning and commerce. An apparent racially motivated murder has caused alarm throughout Ukraine, and amongst its African residents in particular, but while the doctor is concerned he urges calm, insisting that Ukraine is a wonderful place and the locals warm and friendly. The actions of a few deadbeat toughs, he insists, should never cloud this.

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Ukraine Truth
Rights We Didnt Know We Had

Throughout EuroMaidan much has been made of Ukrainians making a stand for their rights. What exactly those rights are were never clearly defined. Ukraine ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1952. The first article of the Declaration states all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, they are endowed with reason and conscience, and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. The ousted and overthrown Ukrainian government showed to the world they dont understand the meaning of these words.


Kyiv Culture

Pulling Strings
Located on Hrushevskoho Street the epicentre of EuroMaidan violence, home to battles, blazes and barricades childrens favourite the Academic Puppet Theatre had to shut down in February. Nevertheless, it is getting ready to reopen this March with a renewed repertoire to bring some laughter back to a scene of tragedy. Operating (not manipulating) puppets is a subtle art that can make kids laugh and adults cry. Whats On meets Mykola Petrenko, art director of the Theatre, to learn more about those who pull the strings behind the show.

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