The 7th International Platonov Art Festival finished on 14 June. The closing ceremony took place on the stage of the Opera and Ballet Theatre. It was attended by the art director of the festival, Mikhail Bychkov, and the governor of the Voronezh region, Aleksey Gordeev.
‘Platonov festival gave the residents of our city the opportunity to immerse themselves in the world of art for two weeks. Moreover, thanks to the event, Voronezh is becoming recognized not only in Russia, but also abroad, since it gathers artists and musicians from all over the world... We don’t say goodbye. See you at the 8th Platonov Arts Festival!’ said Aleksei Gordeev, who closed the event.
The governor’s speech was followed buy a “dance in the air” called “Aria”. This is a joint production by three Italian companies: No Gravity Dance Company, Emiliano Pellisari Studio, and Roman Baroque Ensemble. The show was performed for the first time in Russia.
The programme of the Platonov Arts Festival, which took place in Voronezh between 2 and 14 of June, included representatives from 17 countries: Argentina, Belarus, France, the Gambia, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Spain, and the USA. Additionally, the International Art Residency for Young Theatre Professionals, a joint project of the Platonov Arts Festival and the Theatre Union of the Russian Federation, increased the number of participating countries to 23.
The Festival hosted about 100 events: concerts, theatre and film shows, exhibitions, street performances, art sessions, lectures, workshops, and open rehearsals. Many shows were performed for the first time in Russia: the opera “The Motherland of Electricity” (Voronezh Opera and Ballet Theatre), the performances “Imitation of Life” (Proton Theatre, Hungary), “Evening with NDT 2” (The Netherlands Dance Theatre), “The King David Report” (Gesher Theatre, Israel), “The Russian Contract” (Warsaw Drama Theatre, Poland), “Fro” (Brest Puppet Theatre, Belarus), and “Aria” (No Gravity Dance Company, Emiliano Pellisari Studio and Roman Baroque Ensemble, Italy). The following musicians also performed for the first time in Russia: Vision String Quartet (Germany), Barcelona Gipsy balKan Orchestra (Spain), Sona Jobarteh (the Gambia), Maia Barouh (Japan and France), Hjaltalin (Iceland), and Jean Deroyer (France), who was the conductor of the concert “The Armed Man: a Mass for Peace". In addition, Voronezh residents were the first to see new shows of the German street theatres: Serious Clowns ("Lost Wheels of Time") and Stelzen-Art ("Flower and Butterfly").
This year, a new section was added to the programme of the festival – "Theatre-Plus". It included lectures that preceded the performances "Imitation of Life" and "The King David Report” which were supposed to help the spectators understand the theatrical context of the plays better. Among other events of the section were discussions that followed the performances "The Motherland of Electricity", "From the Depths ... (Artist Vincent Van Gogh)", and "Russian Contract” and the Days of the Belarus Drama – readings of the plays and their discussion with playwrights.
More than 85,000 spectators visited the festival's events in 2017, including 26,000 people who paid for the tickets and 59,000 spectators who visited events which were free of charge: exhibitions, events in the art-centre “Commune”, street theatres, literary and educational events, and the “Theatre-Plus” events.
For two weeks, the Platonov Arts Festival was covered by many mass media, including Voronezh regional, federal, and even foreign media.
The “Kommersant” newspaper called Platonovfest “one of the largest Russian festivals, which now looks like one of the happiest examples of the decentralization of cultural life”. “Vedomosti” noted that "Platonov Arts Festival is distinguished by the accuracy with which its programme was prepared. It makes you want to move to Voronezh for two weeks”. The crew of the TV channel “Culture” spent in Voronezh a few days and produced wonderful and detailed reports on the events. The “Independent Newspaper” was pleased not only with the programme, but also with the audience. “You can list the companies and individuals that were invited to the 7th festival (they are all stars and virtuosos indeed). However it will give no more than a truncated version of what it was like if we forget to mention the creative atmosphere that you can feel during the event, and the wonderful Voronezh audience”.
Information for this article was provided by the following websites: http://www.platonovfest.com/news/610