Culture News Politics Society, 16/01/2017

‘In Fact Entire Kharkiv Became the Stage for Vertep Fest’

Today the organizers of the large scale all Ukrainian ethnic Vertep festival in Kharkiv are summing up its events and discoveries for two days – 13 and 14 January.

They say that in fact, the entire city became the stage for fifty participating teams and 500 people’s artists from all regions of Ukraine, including Crimea.

Saltovka, Aleksiyivka, KhTZ district, Rohan, Kharkiv railway station, New Bavaria residents were entertained by the carolers. The artists also visited the orphanages and hospitals.

“It turned out to be much better than we had planned it and even expected,” says the festival coordinator Olena Rofe-Behetova, project manager of the charity fund “Kharkiv with you”, the Fest organizer. “The participants were acting not only in scheduled locations but all around Kharkiv, during their tours, in public transport and in supermarkets, everywhere they were going”.

Also a great initiative of simultaneous singing of the most famous Christmas Carol “Nova radist stala” (New Joy Came) was implemented for the first time at the Fest, as 660 people in Kharkiv, Lviv and Kramatorsk joined the flash mob singing the Carol together at 12:00 on 14 January. In Kharkiv the participants were singing in the square in front of Lysenko Opera House, in Lviv near the main Christmas tree and in Kramatorsk at the railway station.

Olena Rofe-Behetova and many organizers and participants believe the joint traditional performances gave a powerful thrust to unite the different parts of the country, to provide close ties among people and to bring peace to them. “The Festival conveys the holiday spirit of Christmas and is common to all of Ukraine”, Kharkivites say.

Director of a charity found “Kharkiv with you”, the festival organizer Andriy Sheinin promises that the festival will live on and become traditional to come back to Kharkiv next year.

Picture of Carol flashmob in Kharkiv by Leonid Lohvinenko