|On the cover|
Tunnelling Towards Hope
|28 February - 6 March 2014|
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.
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.
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.
|They are the names and faces that dominate the showbiz news and gossip pages internationally – instantly recognisable worldwide. In Ukraine, fame is a much smaller beast, with celebrities rarely stretching beyond the borders of this country. What’s On pits a few of the international luminaries against what we very loosely term their local equivalents.
Green Day vs O.Torvald
Green Day is an American punk rock band formed in 1987. The band consists of lead vocalist and guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong and friends. They are one of the world’s best-selling groups of all time, having won five Grammy Awards: Best Alternative Album for Dookie, Best Rock Album for American Idiot, Record of the Year for Boulevard of Broken Dreams, and Best Rock Album for the second time for 21st Century Breakdown.
O.Torvald is an all-Ukrainian rock band that performs in both Russian and Ukrainian languages. Founded in 2005 in Poltava, the group moved to Kyiv in 2006, releasing their self-titled debut album O.Torvald just two years later. Three albums have followed, and so have fans.
Taking into consideration the junior O.Torvald have more opportunities to develop, can they reach Green Day’s success?
David Beckham vs Andriy Shevchenko
David Beckham has played for Manchester United, Preston North End, Real Madrid, Milan, Los Angeles Galaxy, French Ligue 1, Paris Saint-Germain, and the England national team for which he holds the appearance record for an outfield player, and also the first English player to win league titles in four countries. He announced his intention to retire at the end of the 2012 –13 Ligue 1 season on 16 May 2013, and on 18 May 2013, played what was likely his final game of his illustrious 20-year career.
Andriy Shevchenko is a retired Ukrainian footballer and a current Ukrainian politician. He is the third-highest goalscorer in Champions League history with 59 goals as of 10 March 2011, behind Filippo Inzaghi (70) and Raúl (77). Shevchenko is ranked as the third top goal scorer in all European competitions with 67 goals, and a tally of 175 goals scored for Milan. Shevchenko signed a two-year deal at his former club Dynamo Kyiv.
But how to choose the winner? Let’s count the total number of goals for each: Beckham – 540, Shevchenko – 446.
Kurt Cobain vs Svyatoslav Vakarchuk
Kurt Cobain celebrated his 14th birthday on 20 February 1981, with his uncle offering him either a bike or a used guitar. He chose the guitar and learned to play with covers such as Louie Louie and My Best Friend’s Girl. Beginning work on his own songs, he later formed cult band Nirvana. During the last years of his life, Cobain struggled with heroin addiction, illness and depression. His story would end in tragedy: On 8 April 1994, Cobain was found dead at his home in Seattle, the victim of what was officially ruled a suicide by a self-inflicted shotgun wound to the head.
Slava Vakarchuk is the lead vocalist of Okean Elzy, the most successful post-Soviet rock band in Ukraine. In addition to a couple of solo projects, the group has released nine albums, with the most recent, Zemlya out just this year. He has a degree in theoretical physics and was a member of parliament for 2007–2008. That same year, Ukrainian magazine Korrespondent considered him one of the 100 most influential people of Ukraine, ranked at 55.
Two famous men, with different destinies: Cobain is gone, Vakarchuk thrives.
Jim Carrey vs Vladimir Zelenskiy
Comedy was Jim Carrey’s “thing” since early childhood. At home he entertained his parents, brothers and sisters with falling down the stairs – in an accelerated version, and then in slow motion. He entertained classmates and relatives by parodying figures as diverse as Leonid Brezhnev and Jack Nicholson. We remember him from movies like Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Bruce Almighty, and The Mask.
Funny jokes, hilarious performances and the sound of applause this is Vladimir Zelenskiy started his career. Now, Zelenskiy is artistic director of studio Kvartal 95 and is winner of the TV-show Tanzi z Zirkamy. Ukraine also knows him as a producer, scriptwriter and actor. His first film was Lubov v Bolshom Gorode.
But in this category the winner is Jim Carrey: he is still the idol of a larger part of TV and film audiences.
Rihanna vs Ani Lorak
Robyn Rihanna Fenty was born in Saint Michael, Barbados, and signed a contract with Def Jam Recordings after auditioning for its president, rapper Jay-Z. Rihanna’s work has earned numerous awards and accolades, including six Grammy Awards, five American Music Awards, 22 Billboard Music Awards, and two BRIT Awards. She has sold more than 100 million records worldwide, which makes her one of the best-selling artists of all time.
Karolina Kuiekis is a Ukrainian pop singer, songwriter, actress, entrepreneur, former UN Goodwill Ambassador, and a National Artist of Ukraine. Better known by stage name Ani Lorak, an anagram of Karolina, she is the face of various cosmetic companies Schwarzkopf & Henkel and Oriflame, as well as travel company TurTess Travel. In 2006 in Kyiv, she opened her own restaurant Angel, and has come a long way since taking second place in Eurovision 2008.
They are both beautiful. Each of them good singers, but let’s vote for Ukrainian Ani Lorak for having a tad more class.
Lady Gaga vs Iryna Bilyk
Lady Gaga is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, activist, businesswoman, fashion designer and actress. She got her start on the rock music scene of Manhattan’s Lower East Side, where, by the end of 2007, record executive producer Vincent Herbert had signed her to his label Streamline Records. Initially she worked as a songwriter, but her vocal abilities captured the attention of recording artist Akon, who also signed her to Kon Live Distribution.
Iryna Bilyk is a Ukrainian singer, songwriter, and National Artist of Ukraine who wrote her first song at the age of 10. In 1995, Bilyk performed for US President Bill Clinton. She has produced 12 musical albums (including several in Russian and one in Polish), many video clips, and continues to be active in the music industry.
Without any doubt, the winner in this category is Lady Gaga. Why? Because she has a stage persona that has taken the world by storm.
Beyoncé vs Gaitana
Beyoncé Knowles started to sing and dance in childhood, switching between various pop groups, such as Destiny’s Child before going solo in 2003. As a solo artist, Beyoncé has earned numerous awards and honours. Her songs Crazy in Love, Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It), Halo and Irreplaceable are some of the best-selling singles of all time. Not only that, Beyoncé was the first female artist to be honoured with the International Artist Award at the American Music Awards.
Gaita-Lurdes Essami is a singer and songwriter of Ukrainian and Congolese descent. Her music combines elements of jazz, funk, soul, and folk music. Better known as Gaitana, she sings in Ukrainian, English, and Russian, but she also knows French and Lingala. She plays the saxophone, composes all her own music and songs, and is a master in table tennis. She has represented Ukraine at different competitions, one of which was Eurovision 2012 in Baku, Azerbaijan with her song Be My Guest.
For us, the winner here is Gaitana: she became the first singer of Afro-Ukrainian origin to represent Ukraine at Eurovision 2012.
Cameron Diaz vs Olha Sumska
Most of us have seen The Mask, Charlie’s Angels, What to Expect When You’re Expecting and other movies starring Cameron Diaz. Diaz has received Golden Globe award nominations for her performances in the movies There’s Something About Mary, Being John Malkovich, Vanilla Sky, and Gangs of New York.
Olha Sumska is a Ukrainian actress from, admittedly, a completely different era, her achievements include being named a National Artist of Ukraine, a National Award of Taras Shevchenko laureate and the loving mother of two girls.
In comparison with Diaz, Sumska has a slight edge; in the majority of her movies she takes top billing in either a main or secondary roles. A patriot, her movies are always based on Ukrainian themes, such as Vechera na Khutore bliz Dikan’ki (Evenings on a Farm near Dikanki), Nazar Stodola, Tygrolovy, and Bohdan Khmel’nytskiy.
by Oleksandra Obushna
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When Walls Can Talk
Rights We Didn’t Know We Had
The Path to Europe Begins Here...
Head into 2014 Healthy
|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|
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.