When I came home one day of March of 1969 with the happy news that I was accepted to dance at a folkloring group 'Tatranka,' Krushchev was in power, Martin Luther King was assassinated, Laika, the first dog, aboard Sputnik was dead, Juraj Gagarin was still alive and Neil Armstrong had not yet walked on the moon. Juraj Janosik from Terchova, Slavic edition of Robin Hood from Sherwood, the key figure in every folkloric dancing school was dead for 300 years. I considered joining Tatranka to be amongst these momentous events. Have you ever been so happy that you wanted to throw your shoes up over your school building?
That is precisely how I felt.
Like all national treasures, this small unassuming woman with drive and energy left a legacy of exiting folkloric festivals to the present generation. Chamillova's dynamic personality helped make her a dance teacher of great discipline. She had a passion, an obsession for Spis folk art: stories and songs, music and dance, skills and handicraft, food and drink, speech, costumes, architectural styles. Local artists may show off their skills by painting Easter eggs, every day utensils, musical instruments, linen, furniture and entire buildings may be adorned with carved or moulded plaster. She loved traditions and shedid everything possible to preserve them...
The cleverness of Chamillova's concept of a smorgasbord of dance had enormous success, in particular the autumn and winter scenes where we gather on mass around the fire. We held live performances not only in Czechoslovakia but also in Poland, Hungary, East Germany, Bulgaria, and
Ukraine experiencing the delights for the first time visiting foreign countries. In Ukraine we drove and drove for ours and our finger moved only a was few millimetres on the map. Kyev was another day's drive from Moscow. To live next to Russia is like being a mouse living next door to an elephant.
Tatranka historical video
Tatranka history 1963 to 1977 Aga and MEdia Dragon
A tribute to an amazing teacher who we all called fondly as stara (a wise old woman) 20 October 1999 the day I applied for long Service leave from the NSW Parliament
Paranoia, brutality, longevity: Stalin's three decades in power have the ingredients of a great novel. So why the dearth of fiction?
The Soviet and American mainstreams expressed themselves in radically different ways, with different fears. Being a single party state, the Soviet Union was always factionalist and unsustainable, and could only perpetuate itself through cycles of repression and repudiation. Its anxieties were mostly directed toward itself; as the Americans made fantasies of threat, the USSR made fantasies of stability and global standing. The Soviet Union was also dominated by Russian culture, and inherited its taste for oblique metaphor and indirect address. (It should be noted that the three greatest filmmakers to come out of the Soviet Union—Sergei Eisenstein, Andrei Tarkovsky, and Aleksei German—never completed a film set in the present day.)Simply put, it wasn’t an environment that was primed to depict the Cold War directly. But it was also an environment with a Cold War mythos that was very different from that of the West. The Soviets did have a “worthy villain,” whom they beat year after year on the big screen: the Nazis. The Soviet Union was the hero who slew the dragon; defeating the Third Reich was a point of national pride. There would never be a more important opponent. The Soviets couldn’t reasonably elevate the Americans to the same status, or even to the status of the White Guard of the bloody Russian Civil War—the USSR’s origin-story villains, in a way.…Americans couldn’t be expected to kill or die for their cause, because—as the 1965 spy film Game With No Rules, set in Berlin at the start of the Cold War, suggests—they didn’t have a cause to begin with. Instead, the rare American antagonists of popular Soviet film were portrayed as pawns of business interests, military-industrial collusion, or, of course, the Nazis. Portraying a monolithic United States of true believers, focused on the eradication of the USSR, would have gone against two essential aspects of the mythology of Soviet propaganda: the defeat of Nazism, which rid the world of an evil the likes of which it would never see, and the notion of communism as a self-evident ideal.For decades, Soviet media attacked the United States—with varying degrees of subtlety—as a broken society, its failure obvious. Capitalism and Western democracy weren’t values that could inspire the same kind of commitment as communism, and the only reason anyone would fight for them was because they’d didn’t know better.