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Ukrainian industry urges gov to ‘stop cultural quarantine’

Over 100 Ukrainian live events companies took part in the Stop Cultural Quarantine campaign, lighting up the sky to urge govt action for an industry left in the dark

By IQ on 13 May 2020

Ukrainian industry urges gov to ‘stop cultural quarantine’

The city of Kiev is lit up as part of the campaign

Professionals from across the creative industries in Ukraine last night took part in a special kind of “flashmob” to urge the government to help the sector come out of quarantine.

As part of the #stopculturalquarantine project, live event professionals shone beams of light into the sky in 25 cities across Ukraine, using a total of 5,400 lighting devices provided by rental and production companies.

More than 100 companies took part in the initiative, including festivals Atlas Weekend and UPark, which both recently cancelled their 2020 editions, venues including Caribbean Club (250-cap.), Lviv Arena (35,000-cap.) and the NSC Olympic stadium (70,050-cap.), agencies H2D and Virus Music, event infrastructure providers such as including Zinteco and Alight and ticketing companies including Concert.ua.

“We represent the modern culture of Ukraine and we are convinced that this peaceful action will go down in history,” comments Yevgenia Strizhevskaya, the founder of industry conference Kyiv Music Days.

“We ask the government to open a dialogue with us in order to develop unified rules for overcoming this crisis.”

“We ask the government to open a dialogue with us in order to develop unified rules for overcoming this crisis”

The Ukrainian government laid out its five-step lockdown exit plan last month, with the first stages of easing beginning this week, but “nothing in the current plan helps clarify the situation for the live industry”, a source in Kiev tells IQ.

“There is an obvious ban [on events] that comes with the lockdown, but we have no official bans on festivals or pretty much any clue when venues, music events or festivals will be allowed to operate again.

“Most festivals have cancelled of their own accord, because they don’t want to be a part of the health risk, or expect a ban to be put in place at some point soon. We also know that even if everything is allowed here, we are still very dependent on the rest of the world which already has measures in place.

“Hopefully it’s just an oversight on [the government’s] part and they will realise there is a massive industry that’s been hit hard and needs some information and help.”

Images and videos from the project can be found using the hashtag #stopculturalquarantine on social media. The online broadcast, available to watch back here, has been viewed over 120,000 times.


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