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Post: Latvian Puppet Theater will remove all performances in Russian from the repertoire


Riga, Latvia. archive photo

Latvian Puppet Theater will remove all Russian performances from its repertoire from next season

MOSCOW, March 25 – RIA Novosti. Theater board member Mārtiņš Eikhe said that all performances in Russian will be removed from the Latvian Puppet Theater repertoire from next season, this is an order of the Latvian Ministry of Culture.

Earlier, an announcement was posted on the website of the cultural institution that the play “Crocodile Gena and Cheburashka” will be removed from the repertoire due to the use of favorite children’s characters in Russian military propaganda, which is unacceptable for the Latvian puppet theater. ”

Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs building - RIA Novosti, 1920, 01/11/2023

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“This is the order of the Ministry of Culture, it comes into effect at the beginning of next season. We are now in a transition period. We play almost all the games we have in Russian. We do not add new ones. . We play until the end of the season, after this season we will no longer play with them.”

According to him, the ministry instructed the Mikhail Chekhov Riga Russian Theater “to provide children with a repertoire in their own language”, and currently there are only three performances for children in its repertoire. “The first reaction is why should we do this? On the other hand, one of our duties as a cultural institution is education. And the order of the ministry is about the transition of education to the Latvian language and one of them. The stages are art,” said Eikhe.

The order of the Ministry of Culture of Latvia explained the fact that from September 1, the transition of education in Latvia exclusively to the Latvian language begins, “therefore, the Latvian Puppet Theater, which until now has performed performances in both Latvian and Russian, is also gradually transitioning to only the Latvian language”.

“It’s not just state theaters that offer cultural content, including theatrical performances for children’s audiences. This means that the commercial sector is also actively working, and children whose mother tongue is Russian will be completely deprived of the opportunity to benefit from Russian culture, said Uldis Zarins, Deputy Undersecretary of State for the Ministry of Cultural Policy.

Katerina Kazanovska, teacher and head of the INSAIT Center for Educational Development, believes that rejecting children’s performances in Russian is a bad idea, because “the moral and ethical formation and development of a child’s personality is possible in the language that the child understands best.” will contribute to a marginalization, a smaller, lower cultural level of Latvia’s Russian-speaking population.”

“If a 4-5 year old child is not acquainted with the theater, is not acquainted with the arts, is not acquainted with the cinema and begins to go there with pleasure, then when he begins to understand Latvian films, if he begins to understand Latvian performances, then most likely he will not be interested,” he said.

Earlier, Latvia’s Saeima passed a bill on the transition of all education to the Latvian language within three years, the Russian language can only be studied as a “minority language”. About 1.8 million people live in Latvia. About 40% of them speak Russian. Latvia has one state language – Latvian. The Russian language has the status of a foreign language.

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Source: Ria

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