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Belarusian artists about why they love Minsk

The Belarusian compatriots Tamara Nizhnikova, Gennady Ovsyannikov and Rostislav Yankovsky were awarded the UNESCO’s Victor Hugo medals and the diplomas of the UNESCO’s Director-General.

Unfortunately, Rostislav Yankovsky could not attend the ceremony for health reasons, but the Belarusian opera singer and teacher, Tamara Nizhnikova, and the Soviet and Belarusian theatre and film actor Gennady Ovsyannikov shared their memories about Minsk and work.

Tamara Nizhnikova, USSR and Belarus’ people's artist, honorable Belarusian State Academy of Music’s Professor:
I arrived in Minsk in 1949. I was shocked by cows grazing near the National Academic Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Theatre, because there was a private sector.
There was nothing, just wastelands everywhere.
And then, everything began to turn around. Some renovations were made, glass was set. So, absolutely different attitude appeared. The Museum of Yanka Kupala and the Minsk Sports Palace were opened also.
Minsk was growing and developing right in front of my eyes. Just see how beautiful it is in the yard and on the river! What a panorama, what a beauty, and just imagine what was there before...

Gennady Ovsyannikov, USSR and Belarus’ people's artist:
I have lived in Minsk since 1953. We, students of the Belarusian State Academy of Arts, planted the trees near the Opera Theatre. And now I don't recognize a thing. There weren’t either the fountain or the statues.
The Yanka Kupala National Theatre is my favorite place. When a new fountain is built, it will be even more beautiful here! Do what you want: relax, go for a walk, go to a box office or come to the theater to see a play!

USSR and Belarus’ people's artists about Minsk and work