«Jewish Observer»
October 2002
5763 Cheshvan

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The IV International festival of arts named after Solomon Mikhoels was held in Moscow. It was timed for the 50th anniversary of shooting the members of Jewish anti-fascists committee.

The performance by the Franko theatre "Tevje-Tevel" with Bohdan Stupka in the leading vole on the stage of Moscow Art theatre became the opening event.

Within a week and a half the Muscovites saw a spectacle after the works by Mikhail Zhvanetsky "Lessons of Russian", a spectacle of the Kharkov chamber Jewish theatre "Last role of Solomon Mikhoels", performance of the Moscow theatre "Shalom", gala-concert of the vocal choreographic ensemble "Hora Jerusalem" (Israel). The festival program also included a week of modern Israeli cinema and exhibition of Israeli political photo under an eloquent name "Bloody hand of terror". The festival also presented a traditional international scientific conference "Lessons of Holocaust and contemporary Russia". Beside the announced concert, spectacles, presentations, the program also included unexpected, moving, in a way, episodes. In particular, sculptor from Tomsk Leonid Usov arrived in Moscow to purposely hand over a sculpture portrait of Mikhoels to his daughters Nina and Natalia present among the spectators. The portrait is made of Siberian pine. During the performance of an Igor Buttman's jazz group the US Ambassador Alexander Vershbow temporarily became a drummer.

Of particular significance for the audience became the following event - during the festival final day President Vladimir Putin awarded the Order of Honour to director of the festival, composer Mikhail Gluz.

Festival's final accord became the performance "Last shooting" (in memory of the execution of JAC members) in the central concert hall "Russia".

The audience was presented with wartime songs, photos and newsreels, as well as verses from the poem "Babiy Yar" by Yevgeny Yevtushenko, poetry by Ilya Erenburg, fragments from documentary books and reminiscences. They were recited by Vladimir Andreev, Nina Mikhoels, Zinovy Vysokovsky, Mikhail Svetin. A wonderful voice of Tamara Gverdtsiteli enchanted the audience of "Rossia".


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© 2002 Jewish Confederation of Ukraine - www.jewukr.org