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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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Ukraine Today
Ive seen and heard some strange things in my time in Ukraine, but in all my years here, Ive never heard or seen anything quite as strange as the brainchild of long-term ex-pat and businessman, Dave Youngs attempts at modern day alchemy. Its been a fascination for me since I first heard his seemingly crazy idea to turn straw into coal some time ago, so when he told me his Tim Burton-like contraption for doing just that was up and running, and invited me to go take a look, I couldnt wait. When I got to his industrial unit in Brovary, what I saw looked very strange indeed, but what I heard sounded very close to genius.
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Being a flight attendant requires good multi-tasking skills. They must enforce the safety rules of the craft, maintain discipline among passengers, serve as a waiter or waitress, answer call buttons, and more. A flight attendant keeps the passengers of an aircraft happy and calm, assisting them when they need help, and ensuring their safety and comfort. Whats On meets with one of those who work in the air, to gossip about what is still believed the most romantic profession and spill some passenger secrets.

When did you last watch clay animation or clay-mation? Its probably been a while. In todays world, stop motion and traditional animation has given way to computer animation a faster method thats made its forebears a rarity, even a novelty. Despite the labour-intensiveness of clay-mation, a creative Ukrainian couple Tina Tanashchuk and Andriy Miskiv have produced a cartoon using the plasticine-based technique. It is garnering attention with official selection to four international festivals. Whats On meets the pair to cast their story in clay.

To be in the echelons of Ukraines richest people, to become one of the most influential businessmen in this country, with earnings topping half a billion hryvnias per year, and all before the age of 40 all this is possible if you are the eldest son of President Viktor Yanukovych. Oleksandr Viktorovych Yanukovych turns 40 on 10 July and Whats On looks into the surprisingly meteoric rise of the former Donetsk dentist. 

Ukraine holds a dubious distinction within Europe, the highest levels of HIV/AIDS on the continent and one of the fastest growing rates of infection in the world. In 2012, 57 people in Ukraine tested positive for HIV each day and 11 died. In Ukraine, it is a problem that desperately needs to be addressed. This piece about HIV/AIDS began as an essay assignment. However, I realised as a young person, by sharing my research I could help raise awareness and bring attention to the issue.
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The life of every photographer is thought to be full of glitz and glamour. Taking in the interesting events, adventures and all the rubbing shoulders with the rich, famous and important means photographers can take on an almost celebrity status of their own. So is it an endless whirl of events and social engagements or is there more to it? Whats On pulls a few of our photographic collaborators out from behind the lens to find out.

Last year, a report titled Exploring Ukraine. IT Outsourcing Industry released by the Ukrainian High-Tech Initiative ranked the country as fourth globally by number of certified IT specialists after the United States, India and Russia. With 40% of the nations IT geeks living and working in Kyiv, it comes as no surprise the city is a hotbed for gaming. Whats On looks at Ukraines videogame industry and the largest of them, GSC Game World.

There are approximately 1,500 kids currently serving court-ordered sentences in penal colonies here in Ukraine; the majority of whom have been convicted for petty theft. This is down from roughly 20,000 in 2003. Its a good trend, its a positive trend, inspired, in large part, by the Ukraine Juvenile Justice Reform Project.

The first thought that comes to mind when you see a drag queen is that theres something wrong with a guy wearing womens clothes. However, the gender-bending satirical genre of dressing up in womens clothes to entertain the public is nothing new. Some say that the term drag dates back to the 18th century, referring to how transvestites dragged their long skirts on the ground. Others say drag is an abbreviation for DRessed as A Girl. As the Miss Diva 2013 pageant heads our way, we look at the sequins and stilettos of Kyivs drag queens of Ukraine.

Ukraines moves toward European integration hang in the balance: its a constant one step forward one step backward scenario, despite surveys showing nearly 50% of Ukrainians want the country to be part of the European UNI0N. Meanwhile, for the first time, Kyiv will host the European Week of Culture representing wider European society and detailing the experience of other countries upon entering the EU. Whats On takes a look at the programme to ensure you dont miss the most interesting events of the week.


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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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