Shows on the web  |  April 2012

Dances and Songs from Kamchatka

The Foundation for Siberian Cultures supports a variety of projects, including those featuring the activities of youth dance ensembles in Kamchatka. The groups are brought to perform in Western Europe on tours that are often prepared in advance through special workshops in Kamchatka,

This approach encourages strongly motivated choreographers in Kamchatka by boosting the young dancers' self esteem and providing them incentives to interpret and express their cultural heritage in artistic and creative ways. These performance tours in foreign lands also produce some enlightening cultural exchanges, which give us vivid insights into the little-known worldviews of these peoples from the Russian Far East.

The Foundation for Siberian Cultures builds on the experiences derived from earlier projects of a similar nature administered by the Foundation's director, Erich Kasten. A few are listed below. They have continued to focus on quite diverse themes and geographies. For example, the Foundation is now preparing a tour for artists from Kamchatka that will include cultural exchanges with Sami reindeer herders in northern Scandinavia and Finland.

In 2009, a European tour included the Even youth ensemble "Or'yakan", together with the dance artists Ekaterina Gil', Aleksandra Urkachan, Maia Lomovtseva and Antonina Koerkova from Kamchatka. In addition to concerts at festivals and museums, priority was given to cultural exchanges with students at schools in Switzerland.
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The youth ensemble "Shkolnye gody" from Palana included in their program in 2004 a special emphasis on the artistic dialogue among various indigenous, Russian and modern western cultural traditions in Kamchatka. This reflected the dynamic ways that people from differing backgrounds interact in light of their heterogeneous cultural heritage and in dealing with new ideas and challenges from the outside. » more
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The advance preparation for the tour of the Even ensemble "Nulgur" in 1999, together with the dance artists E. Gil', A. Urkachan and E. Zueva, focused on elaborating the mis-en-scène of the theatrical dance play "The travel of the shaman to the worlds beyond." The young performers were especially encouraged to consult with elder family members in depth about this important feature of their traditional culture.   » QT Film    » more
During the visit of the Itel'men ensemble "El'vel'" in 1996 most notable performances and cultural encounters took place at the Free University of Berlin and during an exhibition about Georg Wilhelm Steller at the Franckeschen Stiftungen in Halle. This encouraged the Itel'men to preserve and to further enhance a cultural legacy first documented about 250 years ago by that young German scientist. » more
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