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90.jpg (79892 bytes) Big Shows in Maydan Nezaiezhnosti Square and Evropeyska Square

On the Days of Independence (August 24, 1999) two central squares of Kyiv saw grandiose shows. The Evropeyska Square was the venue of the Tavriyski lhry Festival with pop and folk music, songs and dances. The gala concert devoted to the 8th anniversary of Ukraine's independence on the makeshift huge stage at the Maydan Nezaiezhnosti, another central square, lasted for five and a half hours. The concert included performances of folk songs and dances, classical music, ballet and rock. The 350 square-metres stage was set next to a great multi-tiered fountain. Oleksiy Kuzhelny, chief art director of the show, did not invite any foreign performers, giving preference to Ukrainian ones. He has an ambitious dream: to have a patriotic song broadcast over all the Ukrainian TV and radio channels, so that all 50 million people of Ukraine could join in the song.

90_2.jpg (78806 bytes) Tavriyski Ihry Festival of song, sports and beauty

The Tavriyski lhry ("Taurian (names") Festival was held in the town of Kakhovka under Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma's patronage. The stage (the biggest ever erected in Ukraine) was built right at the water edge (Kakhovka sits on the shore of the Kakhovka Sea, artificial water reservoir). A lot of sand had been dumped into the water to create an artificial promontory to build this stage on. The extensive program of the festival included: performances of children, winners of the Chornomorski lhry ("Black Sea Games") Song Contest; a beauty contest (the winner among the 26 beauties taking part in the contest was Kateryna Potlova from Mariupol); a beer-drinking contest; song-and-dance amateur and professional shows; rock and pop stars performances; sports events. Baron Valz-Vein crowned the Beauty Queen Ms Potlova with a diadem, and president Kuchma handed the awards to the young winners of the Leather Ball soccer championship. Unfortunately, the weather was not too merciful and the thunderstorm with high winds prevented the full use of the excellently equipped outdoor stage till 10 p.m. The lightning almost disrupted the performance of the French performer Patrick Simon. The SASH pop group, Tarkan and other pop stars did not seem to mind the lightnings much. The twenty-minute long fireworks played to mark the Festival's closing ceremony.

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AN Ruslan plane.
A giant Ruslan cargo plane and a giant new trolley bus

Antonov Airlines Company has recently marked its 10th anniversary. Big AN-70 and AN-140 have been designed and built by the Antonov Airlines Company. The Ruslan cargo plane (AN-124), one of the biggest and most powerful of its kind has been entered into the Guinness Book of Records for delivering a 135.5-ton electric generator from Dusseldorf to Delhi. The plane can carry up to a hundred automobiles for long distances.

Recently, the Ruslan plane delivered a giraffe from one zoo in one state to another zoo in another state in Australia. The pilots, minding their live cargo, flew the plane not at the usual altitude of 27,000 feet but at 12,000 feet. The giraffe safely arrived at its new home. The plane was the last one and probably the best among all the other planes designed by Oleh Antonov. Kostyantyn Lushakov, executive director of the Antonov Airlines Company once jokingly said that a Ruslan plane was so big that it would look right only on Jupiter, the earth being somewhat too small for it.
The Antonov Airlines Company has been commissioned by the Kyiv municipal council to design and build a new extra-large trolley bus (an electric bus that is powered from overhead wires by means of trolleys). The new trolley bus for 300 passengers will be tested in the city roads at the end of August. It is so sturdy that it can run without an overhaul for twenty years. It is going to be useful on a city plagued by rush hour problems.
90_4.jpg (35135 bytes) Sensational find in Kyiv: Bach family autographs discovered

Original music scores written by Haydn Mendelson, Handel, Bach and his sons (Frie-deman, Carl Philip Emanuel, Johann Chris-toph Friedrich and Johann Christian) wen discovered in the manuscript department of the Central State Archives-Museum of Ukraine. The find made the front-page news in most of Kyiv newspapers and was widely reported in the media. The archives of hand. written music scores had been brought to Ukraine at the end of the Second World War from Poland where a Soviet tank crewmember had taken the manuscripts out from a burning house.

The manuscripts had been kept in Kyiv Music Conservetoire up to 1973 and later where transferred to the archives where they were left to be rediscovered so many years later. Christoph Wolf, a music professor from Harvard, has come on invitation to examine the manuscripts.
90_5.jpg (39408 bytes) Ukrainian author Kurkov's popularity grows.

The Death of the Outsider by Andriy Kurkov, a writer from Kyiv, is in the seventh position on the Austrian bestsellers list (the title of the book in German is Picknick auf den Eis, this new title was given to the book for commercial reasons). Mr Kurkov is a PEN Club member, a well-known author of screenplays, a member of the European Film Academy. His new novel was published by the Diogenes Publishers which specializes in releasing novels written in Russian (M. Bulgakov, V.Tokareva and others). Kurkov's novel is now being translated into Japanese and Turkish. Mr Kurkov is a polyglot (Japanese is among the languages he knows). He is planning to learn his twelfth language.

91.jpg (67035 bytes) Kyiv Rock Festival

This rock festival that was held in early July was a big event in the music life of Kyiv, and of Ukraine, too. The Estonian Millennium Company helped bring to the festival such rock bands as Smokie, Sweet md Metallica. The rock musicians played at the Kyiv Central Stadium that can seat 85 thousand people. Strange as it may seem only about 8 thousand people turned up to enjoy the show. Such low attendance can be explained by several things: very high prices for the tickets which young rock fans could not afford, and the people in the 35-45 age brackets who liked these bands in their young years were not too eager to pay so much money for uncomfortable wooden seats of the stadium; besides, there has been hardly anyone left among the musicians of these legendary groups who played in the seventies and eighties. So, their middle-aged admirers just did not want to spoil the memories of their young days. You know how shocking it is to meet, say, a woman you once loved in your teens and discover she's a grandma with a wrinkled face now, or your school-lime friend who has turned into a paunchy old mail.

91_2.jpg (59609 bytes) 900 years of the Novhorod-Siversky Principality

The earliest discovered mentioning in historical annals about Moscow is connected with the town of Novhorod-Siversky. The annals say that Prince Yuriy Dolgoruky, the ruler of Moscow, invited Prince Svyatoslav Olgovich, ruler of Novhorod-Siversky Principality, to pay a visit to Moscow.
Today Novhorod-Siversky is a town with population of 30 thousand people, situated in the Chernihiv lands, about 200 miles from Kyiv. The 900th anniversary of the principality of the same name of which the town used to be capital was celebrated there in August. President of Ukraine Leonid Kuchma came on a visit to the town to join the celebrations.

The Svyato-Preobrazhensky ("Holy Transfiguration") Monastery which is believed to have been founded in the 11th century had been restored and was opened during the celebrations. The first printing press in Livoberezhna ("Lands to the Left of the Dnipro River") Ukraine was set up in the monastery in the 16th century. Within the monastery walls one finds now a museum of books housed in one of the monastery buildings. It was in Novhorod-Siversky that the epic poem The Tale of lhor's Host is believed to have been written. Novhorod-Siversky and the monastery with its brick houses, the restored central church, an orchard (unfortunately, the unexpected night frosts in May killed the apples), lawns, panoramas opening from the towers are very picturesque places and the whole area can and should attract tourists but not too many do come. Says lryna Husak, representative of the local businesspersons' association: "We are proud of our town, of its history and hope that whatever has been preserved from the times of old will contribute to the future prosperity of Novhorod-Siversky through tourism. But now small towns of Ukraine are living through very hard times. And they don't have too many opportunities for celebrations. We did not have such a beautiful holiday ever, even at the celebration of the 1000th anniversary of our town. I'll remember it for long. I have a memorial coin struck to commemorate the 900th anniversary of the Principality to keep my memory fresh."
91_3.jpg (38502 bytes) Hunting season in Ukraine

There are many places in Ukraine where hunting is allowed at certain seasons: forests, steppe, ponds and rivers, mountains. There are quite a few hunters from foreign countries coming to join Ukrainian hunters. Even in the times of old, hunting in Ukraine was limited by the rulers' decrees to a few months in the year.
The hunters are always looking forward to the opening of a new hunting season. They are preparing for it in advance: the shotguns are cleaned, ammunition is purchased, friends one wants to go with are given telephone calls or written to. August 14 up to August 28 is the duration of the hunting season in Ukraine. 

About 12 000 hunters from the city of Kyiv alone went hunting this year (there are about a half million hunters in Ukraine).Hunting is allowed only three days a week: Wednesdays. Saturdays and Sundays. One is entitled to a limited amount of game one can kill: 5 ducks; 3 partridge; 10 sandpipers; 10 quail; etc. One cannot hunt without a game shooting card, a passport for one's dog or hunting bird of prey.
91_4.jpg (53121 bytes) Golden Gate Show

Vasyl Vovkun. a show director, is going to launch a big Zoloti Vorota Tysyacholif ("Golden Gate of the Millennia") show in September. In a symbolic and artistic way the history of Ukraine is presented from the baptism of Ukraine-Rus to the future (hypothetical) cooperation with extraterrestrial civilizations. The 21st century will pass through the Golden Gate and ET's will shake hands with us, people of today.
Special audio and visual effects, monumental scenery, a very big stage, 500 performers wearing bizarre apparels are designed to produce a great effect.

The show will take place in a new 2000-seat theatre specially built for it in the Obolon Park at the bank of the Dnipro River in Kyiv. Some of the seats are equipped with small tables to put drinks and food on. A section of the theatre has been made easily accessible to people in wheel chairs. The ticket prices will be quite reasonable. The show, involving best performers, will be of a kind, its directors and managers hope, to attract large audiences and will mark the advent of the new century in an unusual way.
92.jpg (55064 bytes) Ukrainian athletes at the University Games

At the latest University Games held in Spun Ukrainian athletes won 14 medals, gold and silver. people from 132 countries l Games. To win the right to go to Spaine, Ukrainian student athletes from 130 colleges and universities had competed at the Ukrainian National University Games. Vadym Hutsait, an athlete from Kyiv who has won a silver medal in the saber-fencing event at the University Games in Spain, is in training for the next Olympics. "I know that in this country I will not be able to earn my living by just being an athlete." says Mr Hutsait who is ranked the twelfth in his sport. "But I'm not going to quit sport because it gives me a great satisfaction. And edifies, too."

92_2.jpg (51722 bytes) Brothers Klychko: new victories

Volodymyr Klychko, a Kyiv heavyweight boxer and Vitaliy's younger brother, won a bout by a heavy knockdown against Joseph Chinganga from Zambia for the WBA intercontinental champion title in Dusseldorfs Philipshalle on July 17. Another boxing match is set for September 25 when in Cologne Volodymyr Klychko will take on Axel Schultz, one of the mightiest heavyweights, in front of 18 000 fans. In Ukraine brothers Klychko who are often referred to as "boxing intellectuals" are known also as patrons of art and recently anew exhibition has been opened in the Museum of Kyiv, devoted to brothers Klychko, their life and boxing career. The boxers' mother who was present at the opening ceremony said that she never watched her sons fights, only waited "for them to call me after the fight to tell ma everything's all right".

92_3.jpg (52838 bytes) Paintball - an Outdoor Game for Grown-Ups

Paintball is one of the most recent sports to come to Ukraine. It started to be played in Ukraine six year ago and has progressed quickly ever since.The Federation of Painball of Ukraine has been set up. It status has made it it possible for it to join the World Federation of Paintball.
The players, armed with special gas weapons shoot at each other with gelatin bullets filled with ecologically friendly paint. It is a very lively game: players run, hide, attack, jump, leap and shoot at the same time. They wear protective suits but a gelatin bullet fired at a close range can mark you not only with a paint splash but also with a bruise. It is a game for men who love challenge and excitement of chase and shooting. Most players are professional security guards and members of special police units.

92_4.jpg (71195 bytes) Ukrainian top soccer player plays for an Italian club

This summer Kyiv Dynamo striker Andriy Shevchenko signed a five-year contract with the Milan soccer club, Italian champion. The transfer cost the Italians twenty five million dollars (the seventh largest sum ever paid for a transfer). In the Italian press Shevchenko has already been called "a new Van Basten", "Ronaldo from the banks of the Dnipro."
Andriy Shevehenko's commentary: "The Italian championship is the most exciting one in Europe. So many competing teams of practically equal strength is the most challenging and thrilling thing possible. That's why so many soccer players from so many foreign sides are eager to play for Italian clubs."
Silvio Berlusconi, president of Milan Soccer Club had this to say: "Every time the ball gets to Andriy's feet, something extraordinal begins to happen. I'm very enthusiastic about; him. My son is too."
Alberto Dzacceroni, Milan's chief coach "It's a great joy to be working with a player like Shevehenko. He is always ready to try harder and harder. He's got in him the qualities of a great player. So much money has been paid for him to make him great. I share the opinion of Milan's president Berlusconi that Shevehenko will be a great discovery of the Italian championship."

Kyiv Dynamo qualifies for the next stage of the European Champion's Cup

On July 25, Kyiv Dynamo took on Olborg from Denmark. The press and, evidently, the Dynamo players themselves were sure of success even before the kickoff, since Dynamo had won 2 : I in Denmark in the first qualifying game and the Olborg side did not seem a club that could oppose Dynamo at the home ground. But Hans Backe, Olborg's coach, looked very confident and predicted Olborg's victory.
To a great dismay of Dynamo fans, this prediction had almost come true. By halftime Olborg was ahead I : 0 and Dynamo seemed to have lost everything it is so well known for: excellent coordination, unremitting energy and thrust, strikers' eagerness to score. Soon into the second halftime Olborg scored another goal and the fans instead of cheering and urging Dynamo players on began booing. It was only sixteen minutes before the end of the game that Dynamo's Husin scored the first Dynamo goal and shortly before the final whistle Shatskykh equalized, saving the game for Dynamo. It was one of the best Olberg's games and one of the worst Dynamo's played in recent years, said a sports commentator in one of Kyiv dailies. But the most important thing was done I Dynamo will play in the group tournament I the European Champion's Cup. Valeriy Lobanovsky, Dynamo's coach, has been recently awarded a medal for his achievements in football.

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