|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.
|What's On Archive ¹ 3 (2008)|
1 February - 7 February
Learn the Art of Striptease
We investigate the new dance craze sweeping the nation
PLUS: Win Free Flights to Any UIA International Destination
Take me out!
On the Sofa with...
|From THE EDITOR (3) - Editorial|
Acouple of weeks ago ? wrote about the rather ludicrous price hikes many of the clubs and bars in the centre were making, but I am very pleased to announce that the World Trade Organisation is officially going to invite Ukraine to join on the 5 February, and Yulia Tymoshenko has claimed Ukraine will be a fully fledged member of the WTO two days later, and that should be good news for everyone who, like myself, is becoming increasingly concerned by the rampant rises in the cost of living here. According to the experts, the WTO will demand massive restructuring and liberalisation of the country's economic system, and one of the main things that will need looking at is the destructively high import duties Ukraine imposes. The expectation is that these will be drastically reduced which will encourage competition and force the prices down, especially when it comes to foodstuffs. We've all seen the price of staple foods rise drastically in the supermarkets over the past few months, which is in part explained by the fact that local producers have the market sewn up because imported goods are just too expensive. The rising cost of foodstuffs can go some way to explaining why restaurants and bars are raising their prices, but only part of the way. Many (not all, I must emphasize) are seeing their customers as a captive audience who must pay whatever they decide to charge. In some ways, such people are correct in this assumption in that at the moment, while the numbers are increasing, the choice remains limited. Especially when nearly every new club, bar and restaurant that opens targets the high-end market where people not only can pay more, but for some strange reason prefer to do so. There is more than enough competition in this area, and they are all welcome to battle it out for the limited pool of clients who can afford to pay their inflated prices by whatever means they deem appropriate (which will probably be a fight to see who can charge the most). But when it comes to affordable places where one can relax over a beer and a bite with friends, there is little in the way of choice. Increased competition in this area is long overdue, and let's hope WTO membership stimulates things a little.
Neil Campbell, Editor
|Ukraine Makes WTO, Finally - Whats Up?|
It took a little longer than President Yushchenko wanted it to take, but nonetheless Ukraine has finally made it into the World Trade Organisation. Yushchenko can heave a big sigh of relief, as he's spent a lot of time since the Orange Revolution promising that Ukraine was going to get into the WTO any minute now - even as the country's bids have been repeatedly turned down. The development is expected to open new markets for the goods produced by Ukraine's burly smokestack industries, and it requires the country to undergo economic reforms that will make it more compatible with the European UNI0N, which Yushchenko wants Ukraine ultimately to join.
|Another Racist Outrage - Whats Up?|
Here we go again, as what seems to have become an epidemic of racist violence claims its latest victim - a Congolese teenager who was killed this weekend in Nivky, stabbed 18 times by attackers in that usually placid bedroom community. This is the fifth racial attack we've heard of since 2008 began - there have likely been others, unreported - and they follow on a series of attacks last fall, one of which was also lethal. It remains unclear whether anyone has been arrested in response to this outrage, as information is just slowly trickling out. Racist and xenophobic violence seems to have burgeoned in Kyiv over the last 2.5 years, and it's difficult to deny that Ukraine now has a problem similar to the one its giant neighbor to the north has. Awful as it is to say, it's hard to imagine that anyone from a racial minority can walk the streets here at night with a feeling of safety.
|Crazy Waits at the Polish Border - Whats Up?|
Thinking of driving to Poland? Thinking of driving back? Think again, as the waits to clear the border and get into Ukraine have become apocalyptically long as a result of a strike by Polish customs workers. Reports indicate that the worst waits are at Dorahusk and at Krakovet-Korchova - the delay at the former is around 55 hours, and about 900 vehicles are lined up there. It's a vision of border-crossing hell: idling in your car for more than two days, your heater blasting into your face and your head hurting from the ambient exhaust fumes all around you. The Polish customs workers have been agitating for better pay and working conditions since October, using wildcat strikes as a tactic. They seek a pay raise of about 600 dollars a month, plus a better retirement package and increased protection from the sorts of attacks that apparently befall people who work on borders.
|Lutsenko Headed For Slammer? - Whats Up?|
Is Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko headed for jail in the wake of his recent fisticuffs with Kyiv Mayor Leonid Chernovetsky? Probably not, but prosecutors have launched a criminal case against him in regard to the much-publicised fight, and technically he could serve up to two years in jail, though something tells us that he's more likely to receive a community service sentence instead. If, that is, the case even goes to court. Readers will remember that Lutsenko and Chernovetsky got into a dust-up when a meeting degenerated into mutual accusations of corruption between the two men.
|Kyiv’s Youth Movements A Taxonomy - Ukraine Today|
Who are all those skinheads, punks, metalheads, hiphoppers, and emo kids who have materialised on Kyiv’s streets over the last decade or so? What do they want? Who do they think they are? Should you avoid them? Here’s What’s On’s guide to the capital’s youth tribes.
|Ethereal Pop from Fleur - Coming Soon|
Fleur in concert, Officer’s House (30/1 Hrushevskoho), 16 February at 19.00
Preparing for the release of their fifth studio album, Fleur – a Ukrainian girl−group with a difference – is playing shows all throughout Russia and Ukraine. The Odessa duet is known for their musicianship and their dreamy, fairytale music. Two new songs, ‘The Sun Rises’ and ‘Ruins and Invasion’, will be the centrepiece of these shows. Tickets are 60− 160 hrv. For more information call 501−2520.
|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.