A&L links to Kseniya Simonova – Sand Animation (Україна має талант / Ukraine’s Got Talent). A&L’s tag is “WWII as experienced in the Soviet Ukraine.” This is moving – even to someone like me, who doesn’t understand the words.
Perhaps I should rethink my satire of my friend who is addicted to American Idol. It’s an open market – and it has, like all open markets, found some real winners. Besides, there’s something flyover about its egalitarian approach. And something even nicer – national identity rah rah along with a kind of generousity of spirit that gives the whole world art.
I’m looking forward to learning from the many on this blog who are not monolingual.
8 thoughts on “Art in Motion”
Definitely need a translation for what she writes at the end … remarkable use of music as well; the arrangement of Metallica’s “Nothing Else Matters” sounded quite locally ethnic, as it were.
It says, if my Ukranian is still any good, “you are always near”, with the “you” being the informal salutation.
John, it was written in Russian, not Ukrainian. Ms Simonova reproduced a postcard of 1945.
Ah, her handwriting was a bit weird and I thought it said “вcігда”, though I would have thought a Ukranian would have used завжди.
I ran into some weird mixes of Polish, Ukranian and Russian in and around Pinsk, back in the 90s.
Postcards in 1945 going to the front, which was abroad, could only be printed in official state language, not in languages of the Republics; it was a State monopoly. If you ever seen Wartime postcards, it is immediately recognizable.
In Ukrainian there is no letter “ы”; the sentence, if written in that language, will look thusly: “Ти завжди поруч”. [you are right about the word” always”]
The handwriting is also a perfect imitation of a script on those postcards – which is in turn an imitation of a habitual handwritten cursive.
The animator is an ethnic Russian who lives in Evpatoria in Ukraine, a resort city in Western Crimea. This animation was originally prepared for Victory Day, not for “Ukraine Got Talent”.
John, I wonder if you recognized the songs. Тёмная ночь sung by Bernes, in particular.
Тёмная ночь was the only one I recognized. I’m afraid my knowledge of Russian popular music was formed when Наутилус Помпилиус and Звуки Му were at the peak of their popularity. Other than folk songs, my knowledge of older music is pretty much limited to Окуджава and Высоцкий.
Mark Bernes became immediate all-time celebrity when Two Soldiers was released, for this song as much as for his acting.
The poet who wrote the lyrics, Vladimir Agatov (Gurevich), almost immediately after his work for the movie was arrested and sent to the camps from 1943 till 1956. He died 10 years afterward.
Темная ночь, только пули свистят по степи,
Только ветер гудит в проводах, тускло звезды мерцают.
В темную ночь ты, любимая, знаю, не спишь,
И у детской кроватки тайком ты слезу утираешь.
Смерть не страшна, с ней не раз мы встречались в степи.
Вот и сейчас надо мною она кружится.
Ты меня ждешь и у детской кроватки не спишь,
И поэтому знаю: со мной ничего не случится!
Dark night, only the bullets whistle in the steppes
Only the wind hums in electric lines, the stars blinker
In this dark night I know you, my love, don’t sleep
At the side of child’s crib you wipe a tear
Death doesn’t scare me, we met her* in steppes many times
She hovers above me now, too.
You are waiting for me, awake at the crib
So I know – nothing will happen to me.
*Death is a female in Russia
Thank you Tatyana and John Jay.
Comments are closed.