Wednesday, October 1, 2014
 
Follow sptimesonline on Facebook Follow sptimesonline on Twitter Follow sptimesonline on RSS
MOST READ



PARTNER NEWS



BLOGS



OPINION



WHERE TO GO?

The Romanovs in St. Petersburg

History of St. Petersburg Museum

 

  Print this article Print this article

Disney Spreads Christmas Joy

On Dec. 20, the Walt Disney Company invited youngsters to the cultural capital for an evening of magic.

Published: December 26, 2013 (Issue # 1792)



  • A pleasantly surprised visitor to Disneys event at the Musical Comedy Theater last week.
    Photo: Disney / For SPT

  • A performance of Aladdin was the main event for more than 700 disadvantaged youth flown in from across Russia.
    Photo: Disney / For SPT

For nearly a century, Disneys stories have kept generations of children rapt with attention thanks to unforgettable characters such as Beauty, Simba and Ariel. In Russia, theyve also given more than 700 very lucky children an early Christmas present theyll never forget.

On Dec. 20, for the seventh year in a row and for the third time in St. Petersburg, the Walt Disney Company, in collaboration with several local charities as well as the Russian government, invited youngsters to the cultural capital for an evening of magic at the Musical Comedy Theater on Ulitsa Italianskaya.

Aladdin, the rags-to-riches story of a young boy and his discovery of a magic lamp, was the highlight of an extraordinary evening. Colorful costumes, memorable characters and intricate choreography brought delight and joy to the faces of every girl and boy.

Aside from kids from the Leningrad Oblast, children affected by the summers devastating flooding in the Far East were flown in for the holiday extravaganza.

At the end of the evening, all attendees received a gift bag featuring toys, a coloring book, a puzzle, a mug, a lunch box and sweets.

The Walt Disney Corporation has now given over 6,000 children from all over Russia a chance to embrace the magic of the holiday season in the past seven years. This years guests came from the Republic of Sakha, Primorsky and Khabarovsk Krai, Magadan and Amur as well as from the Jewish autonomous oblast.

The event is one of two in Russia this year. On Dec. 14, 600 children were treated to a production of Moidodyr in Moscow, Chukovskys classic fairytale about a talking washbasin, at the Bolshoi Theater. This years show was the first in St. Petersburg since 600 people were treated to Sleeping Beauty at the Mikhailovsky Theater in 2011.

Giving back to communities is one of Disneys founding principles, according to the company website. Today, we continue that tradition as we seek to do our part in improving and enriching the lives of children and families, as well as contributing our time, resources and energies to communities around the world.

Their commitment to charity work, along with the recent opening of several merchandise stores in Russia, is part of the expanding influence of the American creative giant overseas. Since Hercules was dubbed into Russian 15 years ago, Disney has launched its own Russian television channel, online radio station, and computer and video games catering specifically to a Russian-speaking audience. Disney now has the highest sales of any movie studio in Russia and accounts for 26 percent of the film markets revenue.

Luckily, Disney movies appeal to universal values, and they are adored by cinema audiences around the world, said Marina Zhigalova-Ozkan, managing director of Disneys Russian and CIS operations, speaking to The St. Petersburg Times. Russia is no exception. For instance, boys in every country played pirates long before the first of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies was shot.

Disneys most recent release in Russian, Frozen, features the voices of acclaimed jazz singer Anna Buturlina and pop star Dima Bilan. The movie raked in more than 377 million rubles ($11.4 million) in its first week. As of Dec. 22, the movie has earned nearly $200 million worldwide since its release, 44 percent of which has been earned abroad.

Such matters meant little to the assembled crowd of children at the Musical Comedy Theater on Dec. 20, however. One can imagine though that, for these kids, recent hardships became unimportant as they were transported to another world filled with magic and wonder, if only momentarily.

Keep dreaming, said Zhigalova-Ozkan before the curtain was raised on Aladdin last Friday. It is only by dreaming that your dreams can come true.

This report contains material from The Moscow Times.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, Oct. 1


The St. Petersburg International Innovation Forum 2014 kicks off today at Lenexpo, where it will be presenting the latest and greatest ideas until Oct. 3. Focusing on economic development and the decisions and measures necessary to encourage development in Russias most important industries, the event is a possibility to discuss the innovations currently available in a variety of fields.


Representatives of the Russian and international media industries arrive in St. Petersburg for the first ever International Media Forum being hosted by the city until Oct. 10. With a variety of events on tap, including workshops, lectures and film screenings, the event plans to reemphasize the citys reputation as the countrys culture capital and as an emerging market and location for the visual arts.



Thursday, Oct. 2


The celebration of the bicentennial of the birth of Mikhail Lermontov continues with todays free exhibition in the citys Lermontov Library at 19 Liteiny Prospekt. Titled Under the Rustling Wings, the temporary exhibition will feature the costumes and scenery used in the 1917 production of Lermontovs play The Masquerade, which he wrote in 1835 when he was only 21 years old.



Friday, Oct. 3


Learn more about how to manage and evaluate employee performance during SPIBAs Human Resources Committee meeting this morning on Employee Assessment: Global and Local Trends. Starting at 9:30 a.m., the discussion will touch on such topics as the partnership between HR and business, reliable assessment strategies and more, with Tatiana Andrianova, the head of the SHL Russia and CIS branch in St. Petersburg, as the featured guest. Confirm your participation by Oct. 2 by emailing office@spiba.ru or calling 325 9091.


AmChams Procurement Committee Meeting is at 9 a.m. this morning in their office in the New St. Isaac Office Center on Ulitsa Yakubovicha.



Saturday, Oct. 4


Wine and cheese lovers will get their chance to revel during Scandinavia Country Club and Spas Wine Market Weekend. Going on today and tomorrow, wining diners can listen to live music, take part in culinary classes and, of course, sample a variety of fine wines from around the world. The cost of admission is 400 rubles ($10.30) for adults and 200 rubles ($5.15) for children.



Sunday, Oct. 5


Look for the latest fall fashions at the Autumn Market today in Freedom Anticafe at 7 Kazanskaya Ulitsa. The minimarket plans to offer clothes more flattering than the puffy jackets that are a staple of the citys cold-weather fashion, while offering the same amount of protection from the biting winds blowing off of the Baltic.



Monday, Oct. 6


SKA St. Petersburg, the citys KHL affiliate, welcomes Slovakian club HC Slovan in a match-up tonight at the Ice Palace near the Prospekt Bolshevikov metro station. The puck drops at 7:30 p.m. and tickets can be purchased on the clubs website or in person at either the arenas box office or the clubs merchandise store on Nevsky Prospekt.



Tuesday, Oct. 7


Learn more about Russias energy industry at the St. Petersburg Energy Forum that begins today and runs through Oct. 10. Attracting industry experts and political and business representatives, the forum plans to welcome more than 350 plus companies and their representatives to discuss the future of Russias largest economic sector.



Times Talk