Culture – a gauge of harmony and unity

June 16. Kazpravda

By Laura Tusupbekova, Assel Mukanova, Kuralay Sheriyazdanova

Culture - a gauge of harmony and unityAstana is hosting the International Forum “The Eurasian culture in the new world”, whose main goal is boosting the cultural and humanitarian cooperation in CIS.

Opening the forum, its moderator – Co-Chair of the Board of the CIS International Fund for Humanitarian Cooperation, Russian President’s Special Envoy for International Cultural Cooperation Mikhail Shvydkoi expressed his sincere admiration for the exhibition arranged for it “Culture of Kazakhstan: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow”, reconfirming the belief that culture has a uniting power, breaking barriers of misunderstanding.

He also noted that the forum had assembled people known to all the former Soviet space, and could be called a gathering of friends therefore. We all, he stressed, must seek common ground, it’s necessary to us all.

The forum covered such important topics as spiritual and cultural consolidation of the CIS literati, development of integration processes, of Eurasian unity in diversity, cultural and spiritual interaction between the CIS nations, cooperation in cultural policies between the relevant ministries.

Mikhail Shvydkoi also noted symbolism of Kazakhstan President’s calling Astana the heart of Eurasia, where people of different cultural backgrounds live in peace and harmony. Kazakhstan is developing dynamically, and the country’s capital is a city that looks into the future. Culture can be a new economy, the relevance of which in the period of global social challenges will only grow.

The RK Secretary of State Mukhtar Kul-Muhammed said the integration processes have a positive impact on development of our economies, culture and art, a vivid evidence to which is this very forum.

These integration processes are based on deep historical roots, powerful civilizational factors and our shared cultural values, and the forum of intellectuals must be a step to making the Eurasian idea, initiated by President N.Nazarbayev, a reality, showing us ways of tapping the rich cultural heritage and common historical experience, M. Kul-Muhammed went on. He also read N.Nazarbayev’s greetings to the forum.

Permanent Representative of Kazakhstan to UNESCO Olzhas Suleimenov said that over the past twenty years we have seen that the national cultures, as well as economies, politics can not be fully independent of each other.

In his welcoming speech, the Russian Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky said

Eurasia is an area of historical coexistence of different civilizations and cultures and, therefore, the forum initiated by Kazakhstan should be a new step on the way to uniting the efforts of the cultural community to enhance the cultural ties, promote joint humanitarian values, raise awareness and interest of the international community in conducting joint cultural events in Eurasia.

The chairman of IFESCCO (CIS Interstate Humanitarian Cooperation Foundation) Polad Bul-Bul oglu, happy to visit Astana again, said that culture is no less important than strong economy, geopolitical or demographic factors, or energy resources. Centuries-old heritage bearing the imprint of cultural interaction is the common heritage of the Eurasian space, the main value, which has a historically significant past. The preservation and development of the spiritual heritage are most important in our humanitarian policy.

If you picture to yourself the map of Eurasia you see Astana in the heart of the continent with its equal distance from the borders of the continent; and it can be viewed therefore as a center of significant geopolitical, civilizational and cultural development. Polad Bul-Bul oglu believes that today it is important to think what world we will leave to our descendants:

– As someone who has life and professional experience in the field of culture, on the one hand, and in diplomacy – on the other hand, I can say with certainty that dialogue among civilizations is a most important part of the international relations too. Dialogue alone is a pledge of the nations’ development and co-existence – be it global politics, or economic, social, ethnic and cultural integration. Kazakhstan’s initiative on West – East cultural dialogue development is timely and should be supported internationally.

Director of the Kazakhstan branch of Moscow M. Lomonosov State University Alexander Sidorovich read greetings to the Forum of the Eurasian Association of Universities, signed by its president, rector of the MSU Viktor Sadovnichy, and he said that under the new conditions the Eurasian initiatives that today implemented outside the cultural context, greater unity and interaction of economic, civilizational and cultural approaches to development.

A well-known Russian film producer Sergey Solovyov, admiring the new building of the Kazakh National University of Arts in Astana, suggested that currently constructed in Moscow new building of State Cinematography Institute (VGIK) should be used for joint projects too.

Other speakers at the forum, supporting these ideas were: the Minister of Culture and Tourism of Azerbaijan Abulfaz Karayev, rector of the Belarusian State Academy of Music, Doctor of Arts Catherine Doulova, director of the Russian Museum of Ethnography Vladimir Grusman, president of S. Aimanov “Kazakhfilm” Ermek Amanshaev, rector of All-Russian State Institute of Cinematography Vladimir Malyshev, opera singer of Moldova Mihai Muntyan, rector of Kyrgyz national Conservatoire, composer Muratbek Begaliev, deputy rector of the Russian-Tajik (Slavonic) University Arina Gaynuddinova, the Artistic Director and Chief Choreographer of “Metekhi” Theatre of Folklore and Georgian National Ballet, Chief Choreographer of the Georgian State Philharmonic Society Gelodi Potskhishvili and others.

Then the IFESCCO chairman Polad Bul-Bul oglu handed a certificate to the Kazakh Culture Minister Darkhan Mynbay, which states that Astana is the CIS cultural capital in 2012.

The first day of the forum ended with a gala concert of CIS art masters.

Today, the forum participants are doing sights of Astana, meeting with Azeri writer Chingiz Abdullaev and the People’s Artist of Kazakhstan Ayman Musakhodzhayeva and then will see Folk Dance Festival at the Central Concert Hall “Kazakhstan.”