International Poetry Festival MERIDIAN POLTAVA

International Poetry Festival MERIDIAN POLTAVA is a festival that for the second time took place in June this year and united such countries as Sweden and Ukraine to represent contemporary European poetry. 31 events were held in the frames of the project. From May, 22 till May, 26 the presentation of the project for interested audience and journalists was held at the biggest cultural event in Ukraine – International Book Arsenal Festival (Kyiv) with the participation of Ukrainian poets Olena Andreichykova, Peter Zalmayev, Kateryna Kalytko, Volodymyr Rafeenko, Artem Cheh. 4 presentations of books and 4 signing sessions took place in the frames of International Book Arsenal Festival.  Organizers told about the festival that would take place in Poltava, handing out flyers and programs of the festival during every event and at the stand of Meridian Czernowitz publishing house. There was also a banner of the festival at every event.

23 events were held in the frames of II International Poetry Festival MERIDIAN POLTAVA during 3 days from June, 7 till June, 9. This year the participants of the festival were authors from Ukraine and Sweden: Gunnar Harding, Angela Garcia, Ann Lingebrandt,  Lars Palm, Lasse Söderberg, Marie Tonkin, Igor Pomerantsev, Olena Andreichykova, Oleksandr Boychenko, Svitlana Dudiak, Serhiy Zhadan, Peter Zalmayev, Yuri Izdryk, Oleg Kadanov, Evgenia Lopata, Ivan Malkovych, Volodymyr Maliarenko, Serhiy Osoka, Victoria Poleva, Volodymyr Rafeenko, Kateryna Kalytko, Ada Rogovtseva, Kateryna Stepankova, Yevhen Turchynov, Artem Cheh, Lilia Shutiak and others.

Informal conversation with the participants and organizers of the festival was held at the beginning of the first day. Trip to Reshetylivka was organized after that, where poetry readings took place near the barrow and in Reshetylivsky Regional House of Culture with the participation of Kateryna Kalytko, Marie Tonkin, Lars Palm, Igor Pomerantsev, Angela Garcia and Gunnar Harding. In the evening the formal opening of the festival took place in Poltava. After a number of speeches and a small brake creative evening with Ada Rogovtseva and literature-musical event based on the novel by Olena Andreichykova “Shadows in profile” were held.

The second day started with the transfer to the Field of the Great Poltava Battle and an excursion around the museum, where poetry reading with the participation of Kateryna Kalytko, Lasse Söderberg, Gunnar Harding started very soon. After coming back to Poltava presentations of the books “The Country beyond Zbruch” by Oleksandr Boychenko, “Can you hear me?” by Igor Pomerantsev, poetry readings with the participation of Serhiy Osoka, Lars Palm and creative evenings with Ivan Malkovych and Yuri Izdryk took place there. After that Victoria Poleva chamber dedication concert “Gotland. Message to the island” was played by a sestet of musicians immersing the audience into the classical art of modern times. At the end of the second festival day concert-presentation of the poetry collection “Not Me, But Him” by Oleg Kadanov took place in Tse-Bar.

At the beginning of the third day of the festival participants, journalists, guests and citizens joined the excursion around the city that was held in Ukrainian and English languages. During the third day of the festival audience could listen to the poems of Lasse Söderberg, Angela Garcia, Igor Pomerantsev, Marie Tonkin and Serhiy Zhadan who took part in poetry readings. The presentations of the new collection of short stories “District D” by Artem Cheh, the new poetry collection “No one here knows us, and we don’t know anyone” by Kateryna Kalytko, children’s art-book “Manual of a (Not-so-young) Father by Peter Zalmayev, novel “Mondegreen. Songs about death and love” by Volodymyr Rafeenko also took place in the frames of the II International Poetry Festival MERIDIAN POLTAVA. The third day ended with the concert of the band “Mannerheim Line” with the participation of Serhiy Zhadan, Oleg Kadanov, Evhen Turchynov, a combination of music and poetry.

The moderators of the events in the frames of the International Poetry Festival MERIDIAN POLTAVA were Oleksandr Boychenko, Serhiy Zhadan, Evgenia Lopata and Lilia Shutiak. The events were held in Ukrainian and English languages, and the poems were read in Ukrainian and Swedish languages.

About 8000 people, among whom there were Poltava citizens, guests from other Ukrainian cities and European countries, visited the events of the festival. The events were covered by regional, national and international media, live streaming was made at the events.

Such locations were used this year: Poltava City House of Culture, Poltava V.G. Korolenko National Pedagogical University, Poltava Art Museum named after Mykola Yaroshenko, Theatre named after Mykola Gogol, Poltava Regional Library named after Ivan Kotliarevsky, Poltava Regional Library for children named after Panas Myrnyi, Poltava Museum of Local Lore named after Vasyl Krichevsky, White Rotunda, Tse-Bar, restaurant “Chateau Galerie” and others.