The Summer Amphitheatre in Vitebsk (Belarus) hosted the opening ceremony of the Slavonic Bazaar 13th international art festival on Thursday night. This time it is dedicated to the 60th anniversary of Belarus' liberation from the Nazis.
Artists, musicians and painters from 27 countries gathered in Vitebsk. Russia, Belarus and Ukraine sent the biggest delegations.
"Recently we marked the 60th anniversary of liberating Belarus from the Nazis. This historical date was the main national holiday. We appreciate clear sky. The festival's motto, Through Art to Peace and Understanding, was chosen not by chance," Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko said at the opening ceremony.
He handed the Union State's prizes in art and literature to USSR People's Artists, composer Alexandra Pakhmutova and painter Valentin Sidorov.
"The good tradition to gather to this bright art festival is growing stronger year by year," Russian Culture and Mass Communication Minister Alexander Sokolov said at the festival's opening ceremony.
Nikolai Baskov, Alexander Rozenbaum, Alexandra Pakhmutova, Nikolai Dobronravov, Alexander Serov, Nadezhda Babkina, Vasily Lanovoi, Filipp Kirkorov, Kristina Orbakaite and other Russian, Belarussian and Ukrainian stars took part in the Peace Ode concert.
France is used to terminating large-scale contracts, as that was the case of the Russian-French deal on Mistral helicopter carriers