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Shevchuk in Finnish

DDT frontman Yury Shevchuk goes to Finland with a concert, a rap and a new book. DDTs upcoming concert in Helsinki will be more intimate than usual, with Shevchuk reciting poetry between the songs.

Published: April 10, 2013 (Issue # 1754)



  • Yury Shevchuk launches a new collection of his lyrics that have been translated into Finnish in the hope of reaching a wider audience.
    Photo: Suomi-Venäjä-Seura

  • The cover of Shevchuks book of poems.
    Photo: VILLE SUTINEN

Yury Shevchuk, the singer and songwriter with arguably Russias leading rock band DDT, is becoming more of a household name in Finland, as his songs and poetry will be published in Finnish to coincide with his bands concert in Helsinki later this month.

The collection Every Spring I Die (Joka kevät minä kuolen) is named after a quote from Shevchuks song Tenderness (Nezhnost) from DDTs most recent album Otherwise (Inache). Every spring I die, from the strict fasting, it goes.

Translated by Finnish author Tomi Huttunen, the book is based on Shevchuks Russian collection of lyrics and poetry called Solo (Solnik), which was published by Novaya Gazeta in 2009, but more recent material mainly selected lyrics from Otherwise has been added.

The work is a follow-up to a book about St. Petersburg rock music that Huttunen published last year.

Called Pietari on Rock (a pun that can be roughly translated as St. Petersburg Means Rock), the book was furnished with an appendix of selected Russian rock lyrics both in Russian and Finnish, including those by Shevchuk.

Huttunen the University of Helsinkis acting professor of Russian literature, whose academic interests are focused on the early 20th-century Russian avant-garde said the literature-centered St. Petersburg rock music of the 1980s had been his other longtime interest since the era of perestroika and the Russian rock revolution.

Unlike the bombastic Otherwise set that DDT took to Finland last year, the upcoming Helsinki concert will be DDTs alternate set, Solo. Though it features DDTs full band, it is more intimate and poetic, with Shevchuk reciting his poetry between the songs.

The collection will be out by the date of the concert, at which it will be available for a nominal price.

Alongside [Akvariums Boris] Grebenshchikov, Shevchuk is one of the authors in Russian rock who should be seen as serious poets and whose work deserves to be published as literature, Huttunen said.

This is what happens to Finnish rock poets such as Tuomari Nurmio and Ismo Alanko, whose songs were published as poetry collections. So there is a certain parallel between Russian and Finnish rock poetry.

On the other hand, Shevchuk can be understood by the Finnish reader; I think this is quality poetry, which is accessible in translation. He has both love poems and social poems that tell us about the pressing issues of today.

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Wednesday, Sept. 17


AmChams Investment and Legal Committee Meeting convenes this morning in their office in the New St. Isaac Office Center at 9 a.m.


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Thursday, Sept. 18


Get your nerd on at Boomfest, St. Petersburgs answer to the United States popular ComicCon. Starting today, this international festival of comics will take over venues throughout the city center and includes exhibitions of comics and illustrations, film screenings, competitions and the chance to meet the genres authors, artists and experts.



Friday, Sept. 19


SPIBAs newest addition to their Cultural Discoveries events is Handmade in Germany, an exhibition featuring unique handmade objects of a significantly higher quality than mass-produced items. The work of over 100 German manufacturers will be displayed during the event, which opens today in the Lutheran Church of Saint Peter and Paul on Nevsky Prospekt and runs through Sept. 28.



Saturday, Sept. 20


Starting on Sept. 18 and ending tomorrow is the Extreme Fantasy Wakeboarding Festival in Sunpark by Sredny Suzdalskoye lake in the Ozerki region of the city.


Those after something more laid back can instead head to Jazz and Wine night at TerraVino with legendary jazz guitarist Ildar Kazahanov. 12/14 Admiralteyskaya Emb.



Sunday, Sept. 21


Learn more about African culture and get some exercise during todays Djembe and Vuvuzela, a bike ride starting in Palace Square that includes several stops where riders can listen to the music of Africa or watch short films about the continent. The riders plan to set off at 4 p.m. and all you need to join is a set of wheels.



Monday, Sept. 22


Do you love puppetry? If so, then be sure to go to BTK-Fest, a five-day festival that starts on Sept. 19 celebrating the art. Contemporaries from France, Belgium, the U.K. and other countries will join Russian artists to put on theatrical performances involving a variety of themes, materials and eras. Workshops and meetings are also scheduled for a chance to discuss the artistic medium in further depth.



Tuesday, Sept. 23


Marina Suhih, Director of the External Communications Department at Rostelecom North-West, and Yana Donskaya, HR Director for Northern Capital Gateway are just some of the confirmed participants of todays round table discussion on Interaction with Trade Unions being hosted by SPIBA. Confirm your attendance with SPIBA by Sept. 22.


Kino Expo 2014, an international film industry convention, will be at LenExpo from today until Sept. 26. The third largest exhibition of film equipment in the world, the expo focuses on not only Russia but former Soviet republics as well.



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