Russia | India
The Soul of Russia International Festival of the Peoples of the North was held during the SPIEF 2023 at the Lenfilm studio. The aim of the Soul of Russia Festival is to increase the contribution made by the creative industries into the Russian economy and to promote national values globally, while also supporting development of the creative sector. This is one of the events scheduled to take place during Russia’s chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 2021–2023, the events operator being the Roscongress Foundation.
The Festival focuses on contemporary reinterpretation of the traditions, historical heritage and unique handicrafts of the indigenous peoples of the North. More than 500 musicians, artists, craftsmen, designers, lecturers and other representatives of creative industries from 15 Russian regions took part in the Festival. The event featured 14 exhibitions, more than 20 workshops and 16 film screenings as part of the Spirit of Fire Academy’s Northern Film Festival, including a preview screening of “The Yugra Novellas”. Six ethnic dwellings and works by seven street artists were also on display at the Lenfilm studio. The programme included more than 30 lectures, seven fashion shows and performances by over 30 music groups. The festival featured a dance team from the Indian Embassy and a delegation from the UAE, who presented a dance group performance, treated guests to a national tent and conducted various workshops. More than 5,000 people attended the Festival events.
An agreement on developing cultural cooperation was signed on 14 June, the opening day of the Soul of Russia Festival. The document was signed by Nadezhda Preobodnaya, Secretary of State and Deputy Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation, Natalya Komarova, Governor of Yugra, and Alexander Stuglev, Director of the Roscongress Foundation.
“The achievements of the creative industries are traditionally well represented at major Russian business events. At the Soul of Russia Festival, SPIEF participants were able to appreciate the impressive results of efforts to preserve and promote the cultural heritage of the peoples of Russia’s North. The sociocultural aspect of the development of the northern regions remains one of our top priorities,” said Anton Kobyakov, Advisor to the President of the Russian Federation and Executive Secretary of the Organizing Committee of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.
“As part of the cooperation with the Ministry of Culture and the Roscongress Foundation enshrined in the agreement, Yugra undertakes to create an ecosystem for developing creative industries and training personnel. In this context, the Creative Industries School project of Russia’s Ministry of Culture is being successfully implemented in the region. A delegation of its students worked here at Lenfilm making an animated film about SPIEF. We will soon see the results of this work,” said Yugra Governor Natalya Komarova.
The Soul of Russia Festival was sponsored by the Ministry of the Russian Federation for the Development of the Far East and the Arctic.
As part of the Festival, a session called “Film-Making in the Arctic: Dialogue between Nature and Technology” was also held at the stand of the Ministry for Development of the Russian Far East and the Arctic, where participants looked at various aspects of organizing film production in Arctic regions.