The International Festival of Arts Slavianski Bazaar in Vitebsk is a unique project that enriches the spiritual heritage of the Slavic peoples, Belarusian Culture Minister Yuri Bondar said at a press conference dedicated to the launch of the 29th edition of the festival, BelTA has learned.
“Slavianski Bazaar in Vitebsk is a unique project. It lights up new stars, discover new names, and shows their art to a wide audience. At the same time, the festival maintains the traditions thus enriching the spiritual heritage of the Slavic peoples,” the minister noted.
Yuri Bondar recalled the motto formulated 29 years ago which is Through Art to Peace and Understanding. Today, it is relevant more than ever, the minister said. “I am glad that the young people who will make their mark at the festival today will be shaping the future being guided by the ideals of peace, mutual understanding, and respect for the cultural heritage of the Slavic peoples,” Yuri Bondar noted.
He said it was not easy to prepare this large-scale festival this year. “Believe me, the national organizing committee did everything possible to help Slavianski Bazaar happen this year, and we did not disappoint the people who were looking forward to this festival. The pandemic did have an impact on our activities. We started very well in February when we announced the program but had to make adjustments. We changed the festival program to fit it in four days,” the minister said.
Yuri Bondar spoke about some things the organizers have introduced this year. First of all, these are the Days of Culture of Ukraine, Belarus and Russia which are making their comeback. “The Day of Russia will be held as part of the Day of the Union State. Ukraine will organize a gala concert featuring popular singers, young performers, and folk bands. The Belarusian concert on 19 July promises to be interesting as well,” the minister said.
Over 300 journalists will cover the events of the forum. Representatives of 17 countries will take part in the junior song contest. The Vitebsk Song Contest will feature representatives of 14 countries.
“The festival will welcome 23 countries, including Canada and Cuba. Turkey is making its debut in Vitebsk this year. I am happy that people have found ways to come to Belarus and that we have been able to address difficult organizational issues with the government of Russia, for which we are grateful to the Russian Ministry of Culture. We are also grateful to our colleagues from Ukraine. The fact that the festival is taking place is a good sign,” Yuri Bondar added.