Arts & Entertainment

Cinemas, National Opera House reopen in war-torn Ukraine

Kyiv, Apr 30 (EFE).- Arts and culture events resumed in Ukraine this week after a two-month hiatus driven by the ongoing war, with the National Opera House hosting theater performances and several cinemas across the country reopening.

The Ivan Franko Drama Theater restarted activities earlier this week, albeit at a different venue over security concerns.

Its headquarters are located near the government offices where president Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s team works and the public has no access, its chairman Nevolov Oleksiy told Efe.

For the time being, performances are being held at the Kyiv Opera House, where a comedy play is running every day at two in the afternoon.

Olexesiy Palamarenko, one of the actors spoke to Efe dressed in full military attire, because, he says “in an extreme situation, anyone can be a soldier.”

“Russian aggression has awakened in me a warrior spirit,” he says. “It is a pride to make people laugh when they are sad. I like to feel their joy and help them disconnect.”

Maria and Anastasya, a mother and daughter who have both enlisted with the military and are helping with humanitarian aid tasks and accounting, say the show has offered them some respite.

“We have been working non-stop for many days and it has been very good for us to laugh and have a good time,” says the mother, who before the war often went to the theater with her friends.

Several movie theaters resumed shows on 17 April in the Ukrainian capital and Lviv to offer people a momentary escape.

“When the alarm sounds, people are forced to go down to the shelter,” Vlod Starosten, in charge of a cinema complex on Kyiv’s outskirts tells Efe.

“If the alarm doesn’t last long, the session resumes, and if it goes on we give a pass so that the spectators can come another day,” Starosten adds.

It is difficult to find bars with live music, but there are some in Kyiv, where street musicians sometimes play for themselves, because, although culture is slowly resurfacing, the capital of three million residents is still overshadowed by the war. EFE


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