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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 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.


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.


What's On Archive 6 (2009)

6 (2009)/2009
27 February - 5 March
James Blunt
Englands Pop Heartthrob Plays Kyiv

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From the Editor (6) - Editorial
You want to know what one massive difference is between the United States and Ukraine? This is a generalization, but here it is: back home in New York, people do nothing but talk, read and blog about this financial crisis were living through, while in Ukraine, they dont. Its startling. When I was home over the holidays, talk of the current convulsions made up the air we breathed. Christmas dinner? The crisis, and what to do about it, and who was at fault, was an unavoidable topic of conversation. Just as it was at New Years Eve gatherings, or lunches out with friends. Crisis talk blared from the radio and the websites and the tv, and the headlines screamed with it. But in the last few months in Ukraine, Ive attended a couple big non-ex-pat gatherings, and theres been not a word about the crisis. Zero.  Which is interesting, given how seriously Ukraine is affected. An amateur sociologist might say this illustrates the difference between the American mind and the Ukrainian one.


Eurovision Acts Claw Towards Final - Whats Up?
Coming up soon, its that annual festival of cringe-inducing pop cheese known as the Eurovision Song Contest, and Ukraines pop princes and princesses are fighting it out to determine who gets to represent the country in the event, which will take place on 16 May in Moscow. Now the National Television Company of Ukraine, which coordinates the Ukrainian effort in the festival, has announced the 15 finalists in the competition, and it mixes both familiar names of the sort you see jumping around every time you glance at an LED screen as well as some relative newcomers.


Russian Prez Says Soothing Things - Whats Up?
Playing against type, the Russian government is showing signs of sensitivity and vulnerability or at least President Dmitry Medvedev, who plays the good cop to Prime Minister Vladimir Putins bad cop, is. He said last week that his country sometimes makes mistakes when dealing with energy issues, and called for deeper cooperation with Western governments on energy. At times, he said of energy negotiations, we do not fully calculate the political risks and practical consequences. Russia, of course, turned off gas supplies to Ukraine earlier this winter, sending Europeans in the Balkans and elsewhere into the deep freeze. Russia blamed Ukraine for the unpleasantness, while the Europeans seemed not to care whose fault it was, as long as the gas started flowing again.


Kyiv Threatens to Expel Russian - Whats Up?
Russian ambassador to Ukraine Viktor Chernomyrdin might become the latest casualty in the perpetual row between Ukraine and Russia. (You might remember Chernomyrdin as prime minister under Boris Yeltsin.) Apparently the Ukrainian foreign ministry is upset over an interview about the current government Chernomyrdin gave to tabloid Komsomolskaya Pravda. Prime Minister Tymoshenko and President Yushchenko are always at each other like dogs, slamming one another, he said, referring to the dustup over the gas deal.


Hryvnya Could Tumble More - Whats Up?
Ukraines national currency, which has taken a battering since last summer, losing almost half its value relative to the dollar, could lose another 19 per cent of its value by August, analysts are saying. Ready to pay about 10 hryvnyas for a greenback? (Depends on whether you get paid in dollars or in hryvnyas, of course.) The news comes in the context of what at least one Nobel Prize-winning economist back west has called Ukraines Great Depression and among forecasts that the countrys economy could shrink nine percent this year. Ukraines credit rating has been downgraded, industrial production fell by more than a third in January, the Austrians, who have invested heavily in Ukraine, are running around in terror and the International Monetary Funds bailout plans for Ukraine, depending on whom you talk to, are either going less than well or have already failed.


Going Broke, Turning to Europe - Whats Up?
Its the new age of anxiety around here. The currency continues to slide on those yellow boards all over the capital, pensioners huddle in lines outside of banks, which is a sure sign of trouble in the former Soviet UNI0N (second only to pensioners hiding sacks of flour under their beds), and traffic seems sparser than it was before Christmas, as if theres simply that much less economic activity and that many fewer people going to work. The global media is whispering of Ukraines possibly defaulting, and local publications are asking when things will bottom out.


German Duo Will Turn It Up - This Week
Dabruck and Klein, Arena Entertainment (2A Basseyna), 28 February at 24.00
German duo Dabruck and Klein have a lot going for them, but foremost might be their ability to cross and mix genres of electronica. In their eight-year career, and sometimes at a single show, theyve effortlessly moved from house and all its variations to electro and even outright trance. Since their start so long ago in their native Deutschland, the two men have toured all over the place, including the US, Russia and places in Asia.


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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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