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On the cover
№7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope

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 EuroMaidan’s three-month-long protests, made headlines around the globe. It was here, on 19 January the country’s 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.


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.


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.


VIP Tourism
Pop Band SMS Goes on Vacation
SMS is a girl-pop group with a difference, one that leavens skilful and sugary post-Soviet pop with traces of acid jazz, rock, funk and rhythm ’n’ blues. They’re the extremely good-looking brainchild of producer Alexander Yaremenko, and since 2004 they’ve been cranking out the singles and videos and touring. At the moment they’re not only one of the top bands in Ukraine, they’re also big up in Russia. But despite all that hard work, which often continues through the winter holidays while the rest of us are relaxing, the girls still find time to travel and spend time with their loved ones.
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Around the World With Pop Star Masha Fokina
Pop star Masha Fokina, who’s been on the scene since her album ‘Proud’ came out in 2007, is famous for her strong and occasionally melancholy voice and her massive pop hits like Beemer and I Will Never Forget You. However, the fresh-faced beauty is also known for her scandalous pranks, such as inviting a male stripper, dressed like a policeman, onto the Ukrainian reality show Star Factory 2, to entertain the housemates with whom she was living as part of that televised exercise in voyeurism. (The incident ended in an impromptu striptease contest among the apparently inspired other residents of the house.)
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Talking Travel With Ukraine’s Hairdressing Legend

Vyacheslav Dudenko is that rare creature: a famous Ukrainian hairdresser. The owner of the D2 salon chain, he’s an experienced globe hopper, so we sat down with him to get some insights into travel as Ukraine heads off for its summer break. Dudenko is currently busy preparing a new hairstyle collection, which is to say a portfolio of models wearing different looks  D2 is the only salon in Ukraine that changes its portrait photos every season. (Note to female readers: He says curls are going to be in vogue this season.) But the salon guru, 47, is still making time to take some trips and of course he travels a lot on account of his work, as he’s a member of the InterCoiffure World Congress. Often he hits the road with his wife Iryna and their 12 year old son.

Five Reasons to Love Odessa, by Slava from NeAngely

The vivacious red-headed half of the newly hot girl-group NeAngely, Slava has seen her career take off recently as the perky girls have climbed to the top of the Slav-pop heap. They’ve got not only a handful of video hits to their credit, but also a Playboy spread that jumped off newsstand shelves. Here the Odessa native sits down with ‘What’s On’ to talk about the charms of her beloved southern port hometown.

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Five Reasons to Love Yalta By Vasiliy Bondarchuk

Vasiliy Bondarchuk started out his singing career in musicals, but with his rugged good looks it was only a matter of time before he was picked for centre stage and his very own pop career. Since then he has become a favourite throughout the land, and this week he tells us of his first choice place in Ukraine for relaxing.

Five Reasons to Love Malomayak By Stella Zakharova

Olympic champion and President of the charity fund “Sport and Children” Stella Zakharova doesn’t have much time to rest. To recover from her hectic Kyiv life, she likes to get as far from the crowd as possible whenever she can. The organiser of the Stella Zakharova Cup event finds her inspiration in riding horses and other forms of exercise.

Five Reasons to Love Yaremcha By Irena Karpa

Irena Karpa, the MTV Ukraine host and rock singer and Ukraine’s perkiest writer, recently spoke with What’s On about the places that inspire her. It turns out Irena prefers the Carpathians, where she grew up, to the always-popular Crimea as the location that speaks to her imagination.

Five Reasons to Love Chernivtsi By Martha

The young and promising Ukrainian singer Martha was born in Chernivtsi, and while she has found fame and fortune following her success in the international singing contest ‘Universitalent’ in 2000 and travels all over Ukraine and further afield she still considers the town to be the best place in the world. Martha has a fairly relaxed approach to her career as a singer, releasing a limited number of videos over the years, but she has a wonderful voice that makes her very popular in the country. One thing she is not relaxed about, even though it is her favourite place to relax, is her home town. Continuing our series of VIP Travel, Martha tells us why Chernivtsi is so special.

Five Reasons to Love Tatariv

Ukrainian rock singer Alyona Vinnitskaya’s favourite place in Ukraine for relaxation is the small Carpathian village of Tatariv in the Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast. The peaceful landscapes, cuisine and traditions of the area are close to her heart, and it is these that make her favour the place over all other holiday destinations in the country. This week she wants to tell everyone what is so special about this little town nestling in the Carpathian Mountains.

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Five Reasons to Love Odessa By Svetlana Loboda

1. Odessa is a party town
I first became acquainted with Odessa many years ago when we went there on tour with the ‘Cappuccino’ girls. I fell in love with the place as soon as I saw it, and there was something about it that made me relax and take things easy. People often confuse Odessa with Crimea but there is no similarity. Crimea is an overcrowded and frantic resort these days, and it is not as festive as Odessa. The friends I have here are people I met five years ago at a wedding and since then we have become very close. These are the people I party with in this great city.

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Ukraine Truth
Rights We Didn’t 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 don’t 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 – children’s 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. What’s 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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