Gomel oblast lies to the southeast of Belarus and borders on Briansk oblast /Russia/, Kiev , Chernigov and Zhitomir oblasts /Ukraine/.

The territory of Gomel oblast is 40,400 square kilometers. One third of the territory is covered with forests; the biggest rivers – the Dnepr, the Sozh, the Berezina and the Pripiat – are the most important navigable ways of Belarus .

There is the national park Pripiatskiy and the Polesye radiation-ecological reserve in the oblast.

Today there are 23 museums and 4 theaters and philharmonic societies in Gomel oblast numbers.

The region has 2,540 monuments, 1,360 of them are monuments of history and culture, 140 – of architecture and 1,040 – of archeology. And if the latter /they include ancient settlements and burial places/ are of interest only to archeologists and historians, the other places stir deep interest of the people who appreciate architectural masterpieces and are fond of the Belarusian history.

Karachevsky: The Culture Ministry should create conditions for public-private partnership projects

MINSK, 24 September (BelTA) – The Culture Ministry of Belarus should create necessary conditions of public-private partnership development in the implementation of projects, First Deputy Culture Minister Vladimir Karachevsky told a press conference held in Minsk on 24 September to discuss the organization of the international theater forum TEATR 2013 in the Belarusian capital, BelTA has learnt.

“The Culture Ministry should focus, first of all, on the creation of favorable conditions for the implementation of such projects,” Vladimir Karachevsky noted. “Forms of assistance can vary, including administrative support, allocation of budgetary resources for new plays, making costumes and setting,” he added.

According to the official, sponsor support for cultural projects increases every year. Thus, for instance, nearly Br12 billion in extra budgetary resources were attracted last year. Today about ten big theater projects in the country are implemented in cooperation with sponsors. Among them is the international festival Panorama, Minsk International Christmas Opera Forum, an international festival Dolls Above the Neman.

There was noted at the press conference on 24 September that the forum TEATR is remarkable due to three reasons. First of all, Belarusians will see world productions. Secondly, the forum will not just present plays, it will touch upon important themes for the Belarusian culture. Thirdly, the forum serves as a model for cooperation between culture and business. According to Viktor Babariko, Chairman of the Board of OAO Belgazprombank, one of the organizers of the forum, the main thing in the implementation of a project is an idea and the leader. “Money go third. It is a misfortune when there are sources but no ideas or leaders,” he said.

The international theater forum TEATR will be held in Minsk from 28 September to 21 October. The forum will comprise 16 plays divided into three sections: International Program, Best Russian Plays and Belarusian Premieres.

The international section will include seven award-winning plays by European independent theaters: Walls That Whisper (France), Bodenprobe Kasachstan (Rimini Protokoll theater), Song of the Mother and the Motherland (Wroclaw, Poland), (A)pollonia (Nowy Teatr, Warsaw), SADEH21 by one of the world’s most prominent choreographers Ohad Naharin, MUCK by Bela Pinter, Long Life by New Riga Theater. All the productions are experiments demonstrating a new, unusual and sometimes provocative view on the modern age, and traditional theater forms.

The Russian section will comprise four productions: a performance “Lear” based on the tragedy by William Shakespeare and staged by St. Petersburg Theater “Comedian’s Retreat”, a play Yekateriba Ivanova by the Russian State Academic Drama Theater named after Fyodor Volkov, the cycle "Shoot/Get Treasure/Repeat" of St Petersburg’s theater Post and a show “The Good Person of Szechwan” by Moscow’s Pushkin Theater.

The Belarusian program will comprise five premiere performances: PATRIS by directors Sergei Antselevich, Dmitry Bogoslavsky and Viktor Krasovsky, Short-time memory by Belarusian playwright Konstantin Steshik, Moody Hockey Player by Belarusian playwright Pavel Pryazhko, The Quiet Rustle of Retreating Footsteps by Belarusian playwright Dmitry Bogoslavsky, and REMONT by InZhest theater.

“The Belarusian block is of high importance. We are pursuing a goal to open Belarusian authors for the audience. In regions, for instance, people know little about the new drama format presented by young playwrights chosen into international shortlists. The author will be left unnoticed if he/she is not presented. It is important for us to make an international presentation,” said TEART’s Director Anzhelika Krashevskaya.

Performances will be held at the New Drama Theater, the Palace of Culture of Trade Unions, the Belarusian State Academic Music Theater, the MAZ Palace of Culture, the Belarusian Dramaturgy Theater, the studio Me100, the Dinamo sports center. Residents and guests of the Belarusian capital will see productions of eight countries.

The forum is organized by the Center of Visual and Performing Arts Center “Art Corporation” and OAO Belgazprombank in association with the Culture Ministry of the Republic of Belarus. The general partner of the forum is OAO Gazprom transgaz Belarus.

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Development, informational and technical support: BELTA, 2006