Radiy Khabirov: "Folkloriada is a great opportunity to unite humanity'

Radiy Khabirov: "Folkloriada is a great opportunity to unite humanity in the name of all the best"

On July 3, after the opening ceremony of the VI World Folkloriada, Head of Bashkortostan Radiy Khabirov, President of CIOFF Philippe Beaussant and President of the Russian National Section of CIOFF, Director of the State Russian House of Folk Art named after Vasily Polenov Tamara Purtova answered journalists' questions and shared their impressions of the event.

Press Approach Transcript:

Сor. Radiy Faritovich, today is a big and long-awaited event for our republic and country - the VI World Folkloriada has started. The republic, despite the restrictions associated with the coronavirus, took responsibility for holding such a large-scale forum. How do you assess the work that has been done to prepare the Folkloriada? And your personal impressions from the first days of this event.

Radiy Khabirov: The opening ceremony has just ended. I can say that I have never seen such a wonderful show in my life, but I have seen a lot. It was very intellectually prepared. The good inner content of what we want to convey is our history, the friendship of peoples, the friendship of all people who live in our country and around the world.

It was not easy for us. We have been preparing for five years, and in the last two years, the preparation went almost non-stop. You rightly said that we took responsibility for holding the Folkloriada, because the epidemiological situation is not easy. But, I emphasize, subject to all sanitary rules and requirements, we will hold the Folkloriada at the proper level. We will delight all participants and residents of Bashkortostan.

We forget that Folkloriada is, in fact, people's diplomacy. This is very important in modern conditions when there are a lot of aggressive actions from different sides. And we say that we are all people, regardless of the boundaries separating us, and we all want to live in peace and harmony.

Cor: Mr. Beaussant, how do you assess the work that Bashkortostan has done to prepare and conduct the Folkloriada? What mood prevails among the participants and guests?

Philippe Beaussant (from the words of the translator): I am very delighted. For five years, we have worked together with the Head of the Republic and the Ministry of Culture to organize this event. For me, Ufa has already become a second home.

The discovery was incredible. From my own experience, I can say that this is something amazing. I have four such discoveries behind me. And with all my heart I can say that this show was the best of all. I practically burst into tears because it was really amazing.

Of course, I really want to forget about the pandemic. Because this is some kind of nightmare, even regardless of the fact that we have to take care of each other more thoroughly than before.

Despite these difficulties, we managed to bring here delegations from 37 countries. And that's just great. Alas, due to the epidemic situation, delegations from South Africa, Germany, and Egypt were unable to come. But you all saw that the countries that arrived created a unique atmosphere. And this is after two years of inactivity when I had to rehearse remotely.

Tomorrow you will see many bands that will perform their dances on the street, and you will understand how eager they were to come here, how much they wanted to be here. It will be a great colorful show. I am sure that the artists will give themselves to the viewer 100 percent.

Despite the fact that, unfortunately, the Folkloriada had to be postponed last year, this time they decided not to cancel it, to hold it at all costs! Of course, we again saw bans everywhere: the borders are closed, you cannot travel. But, despite this, we managed to gather in Ufa a lot of dance, vocal, and musical groups. And you will be convinced that, despite the pandemic, this will be the best Folkloriada in history. Shortly before my arrival, I talked with the Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, and she wished all the best to the participants of the Folkloriada. I see that everything here is organized at the highest level. I would like to say: “Bravo to the organizers! Bravo to the republic! And bravo to the Russian Federation! "

Cor .: Tamara Valentinovna, Russia is hosting the Folkloriada for the first time. During your preparation, you have been to Bashkortostan more than once. I would like to know your impressions. Did the republic live up to the expectations of CIOFF?

Tamara Purtova: I believe that we, I mean Bashkortostan, have won all the Olympic Games that we have seen. This is an example. Already today Ufa can calmly host the Olympics - and the whole world will be delighted. Starting from the fact that you have the most rural clubs - more than 2 thousand. No other region of Russia has such a figure. Everything comes from there, and this is very important.

We are extremely grateful to Radiy Faritovich. Because you can say: "dark, dark", or you can light a candle. This requires strength, faith, and responsibility. And if not for the Head of Bashkortostan, they would hardly have been able to move this mountain. Low bow! And good luck to all of us! Everything will be fine. I'm sure.

Cor .: Radiy Faritovich, I will ask you to answer in English. Why do you think such large international holidays as the Folkloriada are needed in the modern world?

Radiy Khabirov (from the words of the translator): I think that the Folkloriada is really important here and now. This is the largest and most important cultural event this year. Again and again, I repeat that we are all human, no matter what borders divide us, what kind of religion or nationality we are. We all want to live in peace and harmony. We want to create families and be happy. Therefore, the Folkloriada is a great opportunity to unite humanity in the name of something good, kind, and bright.