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On the cover
7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope

28 February - 6 March 2014

Ukraine History

A Stronghold of Rulers and Rebels

With the recent death toll jumping to nearly 100 and 1,000 injured, Hrushevskoho Street, one of the strongholds of EuroMaidans three-month-long protests, made headlines around the globe. It was here, on 19 January the countrys stand against government corruption, abuse of power, and the violation of human rights turned from peaceful protest to all-out revolution. Having witnessed much over the years, Hrushevskoho is a street with a history, and not only care of recent days.


Ukraine Today
Acelebrity using their status and intelligence to influence public views and opinion is rarely seen in modern society, even less so in Ukraine. Here, the majority of celebs use their time, effort, and money to enhance or further their career rather than put their name to something that can do good for others. However, as EuroMaidan intensifies, some are making themselves heard and they fall either side of the EuroMaidan divide.
It used to be that when rebellion and revolution occurred, the intellectual, creative, and spiritual elite would be front and centre.


Ukrainian Culture

When Walls Can Talk

People have been writing on walls since the dawn of civilisation, we call it graffiti, and ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. Sometimes it is merely the creator wanting to leave his or her mark; sometimes there is an underlying social or political reason. And it is due to the latter that graffiti has exploded across Kyiv in recent months. Anti dictator messages aside, we peel back a few layers of paint to look at graffiti in the city in general.


My Kyiv

DJ Amadeus

Ukrainian born DJ Amadeus is a shining light on the New York club scene and sits near the top of any list of American DJs. Inspired by the likes of Paul van Dyk, Danny Tenaglia, Junior Vasques and Carl Cox, he has achieved great things with his own music creations. He says the secret of his success is that music is his calling, and his one true love in life.

Having been born in Kharkiv, how is it that you came to be one of the top American DJs?
My family moved to New York when I was just three years old. Both my parents were engineers and they were offered a job in the states and decided to emigrate. In Ukraine they had also been professional singers and music was instilled in me from a very young age. I went to music school and studied the piano, but they werent happy at all when I became interested in DJing and wanted to devote so much of my life to it. This was in the 90s when this style of DJing was in its infancy in New York. I fell in love with it straight away and started visiting clubs, trying to learn how the process of mixing music works. I listened to the techniques and tried to repeat it, and soon discovered that people enjoyed my music too. Its a tough market being a DJ in America. You need to know how to work the crowd, and when you get them going its amazing!

 What is your experience of Ukraine?
Does your family preserve any national traditions? Despite the fact that I love living in New York, I really like Ukraine. The people here are good people. During my trip to Kyiv with the Nokia Express Music Party I went sightseeing visiting Sofoyivska and Mykhaylivska churches and took lots of photos. The thing I noticed is that people dress very well here, and it seems to be a truly European city. Everything I saw was just how my parents had told me it would be. They talk about the place all the time, and I can even remember Russian being spoken in my home when I was a kid, even though I cant speak it myself. My family has preserved a number of Ukrainian traditions, for example we always celebrate Ukrainian Easter and we go to the Orthodox Church. You have travelled all over the world.

 How has this experience and the music you have heard affected your own style?
I like to travel very much. You come to understand a lot by visiting different countries, seeing different cultures and ways of life. Even the same style of music varies drastically throughout the world; Japanese house music is quite different from Ukrainian house. Its astonishing! Ive noticed that Kyivites prefer underground music more than techno or production, and that they dont like commercial styles so much. Hip hop is very big in New York, but not so much here and I think that is a good thing as it allows different styles to develop.

What inspires you and the music you create?
Mostly I prefer house and electronic music. I also love listening to music from different countries and cultures which helps me to make music I like. I dont have any special secret about how to make a hit. I just rely on my own taste and choose tracks I like. It seems that people trust my choice as they like the music I create. When creating tracks or mixing them I am not trying to convey any message or have any meaning in it. House music itself is very powerful and it doesnt need to deliver any global understanding or anything.

Do you think that things are only done well when they are done with love and passion?
Absolutely! Im now thirty years old and have devoted almost half my life to music. I enjoy everything I do. I never had a teacher, or someone who told me how it needed to be done, I just got on with it and did it myself in my own way. And I did it because I liked doing it. Looking to the future I just want to keep making music that people enjoy and creating sounds I like, as every DJ does. When I have children I will try and get them interested in music as my parents did with me. The fact is that they wanted me to be somebody, and I think I have achieved that! Anastasiya Skorina

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    Ukraine Truth
    Rights We Didnt Know We Had

    Throughout EuroMaidan much has been made of Ukrainians making a stand for their rights. What exactly those rights are were never clearly defined. Ukraine ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1952. The first article of the Declaration states all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, they are endowed with reason and conscience, and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. The ousted and overthrown Ukrainian government showed to the world they dont understand the meaning of these words.

    Kyiv Culture

    Pulling Strings
    Located on Hrushevskoho Street the epicentre of EuroMaidan violence, home to battles, blazes and barricades childrens favourite the Academic Puppet Theatre had to shut down in February. Nevertheless, it is getting ready to reopen this March with a renewed repertoire to bring some laughter back to a scene of tragedy. Operating (not manipulating) puppets is a subtle art that can make kids laugh and adults cry. Whats On meets Mykola Petrenko, art director of the Theatre, to learn more about those who pull the strings behind the show.


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