Lithuania – Ukraine. Cultural Partnership 2016


2016 09 20

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The second phase of the Lithuania – Ukraine: Cultural Partnership 2016 project began last week in Ukraine. From September to November, Kiev, Lvov and Odessa will feature a marathon of cultural events bringing contemporary Lithuanian culture and the people who create it closer to Ukraine, celebrate existing ties, form new ones, and initiate long-term cooperation that would inspire both countries.

In the autumn phase of the project, coordinated by the Lithuanian Culture Institute, Lithuanian drama theatre, object theatre, contemporary dance for children, urban dance and contemporary opera all came together to participate in the Gogolfest art festival in Kiev, which is this year focused on Lithuania. The festival began on 15 September with “Krapp's Last Tape” (dir. Oskaras Koršunovas) – actor Juozas Budraitis’ intimate and courageous confrontation with old age (and the audience). The festival’s audience will see six more performances from Lithuania, such as “Lower Depths” (dir. Oskaras Koršunovas), “Have a Good Day”, contemporary opera by Vaiva Grainytė, Lina Lapelytė and Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė, theatre and dance performances for children and youth. These shows are all currently actively touring some of the world’s most famous festivals and are arriving in Ukraine from France, Sweden, Scotland and China. The festival, and the focus on Lithuania, will draw to an end with the “Feel-Link” street dance performance (by the Low Air dance theatre and the Arts Printing House), which covers emotions, relationships, and things that can only be expressed through dance.

Events were planned in Lvov as well to parallel those in Kiev. On 14 September, the Lvov international literature festival was opened by guest of honour Tomas Venclova, a Lithuanian and global writer and thinker. A sizeable group of Lithuanian writers have presented their work in Lvov: Alvydas Šlepikas, Gintaras Grajauskas, Markas Zingeris, Jaroslavas Melnikas, Antanas A. Jonynas, Danutė Kalinauskaitė, Dainius Gintalas and Giedrė Kazlauskaitė.

On 30 September, conductor Modestas Pitrėnas will conduct the National Philharmonic of Ukraine. Together with violin virtuoso Vilhelmas Čepinskis and Ukrainian violinist Sofija Grabovska, they will perform Mikalojus Konstantinas Čiurlionis’ symphonic poem Miške, Vidmantas Bartulis’ Concerto for Two Violins and Orchestra, Antonin Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, and a new interpretation of Myroslav Skoryk’s well-known Melody.

On 10-14 October, Lithuanian and Ukrainian illustration workshop participants Ieva Babilaitė, Katerina Biletina, Saulė Degutytė, Paulius Juodišius and Dmitro Kuzmenko will complete their “odyssey” in Odessa. On 20 October, the XX Century in Posters – an international poster exhibition – will open at the Mistetskyi Arsenal in Kiev. Dr. Karolina Jakaitė created the collection of posters for this event.

On 22-30 October, the 46th Molodist international film festival in Kiev will present a film programme covering both Lithuanian film classics and current work (curated by the Lithuanian Film Centre).

Ukraine’s cultural season will be closed on 1 November with the YIVO in Vilnius: The Beginning of the Legend exhibition on Lithuanian Jewish heritage at the Taras Shevchenko National Museum. The exhibition’s curators, Dr. Lara Lempertienė and Dr. Giedrė Jankevičiūtė, are organising the third – following Krakow and Vilnius – meeting on lost elements of Lithuania’s culture with their visitors by presenting Ukrainian elements from the YIVO Institute’s collection of documents.

The cooperation programme “Lithuania – Ukraine: Cultural Partnership 2016” introduces  Lithuanian photography, design, literature, music, theatre and visual arts in Kiev and other Ukrainian cities in two stages – with a cycles of events in spring and in autumn. The project embraces also seminars, master classes, other educational activities organized together with Ukrainian partners.

PROGRAMME (September-November)