Author: Julie Hersh

Munisa Rizayeva / Муниса Ризаева

Munisa Rizayeva (Муниса Ризаева) is an Uzbek singer and actress. Rizayeva has been on the scene for some years, but her popularity has been picking up recently. She is seen as unique in the world of Uzbek pop, with an unusual voice and fashion style—she’s bringing the Uzbek pop scene in a new direction with […]

Tangerines / Mandariinid

Tangerines (Mandariinid) is a 2013 Estonian–Georgian drama film. It’s in Russian and Estonian, despite the fact that it takes place in and was filmed in Georgia. The film is about a village in Abkhazia (considered a part of Georgia or an independent republic, depending on who you ask), whose residents are mostly ethnic Estonians. The year […]

Hitchhiking Through Belarus / Аўтаспынам па Беларусі

Hitchhiking Through Belarus (Аўтаспынам па Беларусі) is a contemporary Belarusian documentary TV series. Unlike most shows that air on Belarusian television, it is actually in Belarusian, as opposed to Russian. There are about 30 episodes, most about 20 minutes long; they aired from 2013 to 2016. The show aired on Belsat, Belarus’s first independent TV station. Hitchhiking follows […]

Tyll the Giant / Suur Tõll

Tyll the Giant (Suur Tõll) is an Estonian short animated film from the Soviet era, released in 1980. It was made by Rein Raamat, one of the earliest and most well-known Estonian directors of animated films. The film has nationalistic elements, and was frowned on by the Soviet authorities. It has more music than words, […]

Aygul Barieva / Айгуль Бариева

Aygul Barieva (Айгуль Бариева in Russian) is a renowned Tatar singer who’s been performing now for more than 20 years. She’s a Distinguished Artist of the Republic of Tatarstan, among many other awards. Most of her repertoire is in the Tatar language, though she occasionally performs in Russian as well. Barieva is from Kazan, the capital of […]

SuperAlisa / СуперАлиса

SuperAlisa (СуперАлиса in Russian; also written as SUPERӘLİSӘ in Tatar; real name Alisa Khusainova, in Russian transliteration, or Алиса Шамил кызы Хөсәенова in Tatar) is a contemporary/recent Tatar pop(ish) singer, and an extremely individual figure on the Tatar music scene. She sings mostly in Tatar. SuperAlisa’s music is a highly unusual mix of electronica arrangements, traditional Tatar […]

Dilya Nigmatullina / Диля Нигматуллина

Dilya Nigmatullina (Диля Нигматуллина) is a Tatar singer of pop music. Though she has fewer albums to her name than some of her Tatar pop contemporaries, she has a loyal following and is pretty well known in the small Tatar pop world. Nigmatullina actually grew up not in Tatarstan but in the Russian republic of […]

Albina Apanaeva / Альбина Апанаева

Albina Apanaeva (Альбина Апанаева in Russian) is a Tatar singer. She performs pop music in the Tatar language, and occasionally in Russian. She also currently works as an event organizer, though she’s best known as a singer—she’s sometimes even called the most popular Tatar pop singer. Apanaeva was born in Naberezhnye Chelny (Яр Чаллы in […]

Irke / Иркә

Irke (Иркә in Tatar, Иркэ in Russian; real name Aygul Minshakirova, Айгөл Миншакирова in Tatar) is a contemporary Tatar singer. She sings mainly pop, with some folk mixed in. She’s also an actress, and both her acting and singing work has taken place entirely in the Tatar language. Irke is from a village in the south of […]

Bibinur / Бибинур

Bibinur (Бибинур; in Tatar the word means “carrying light”) is a 2009 drama film. It was made in Russia but is largely in Tatar, the language of the Russian Republic of Tatarstan. It was filmed in Algaevo (Алгаево), a village in Tatarstan. In 2011, the documentary Bibinur: The Film About the Film (Бибинур — фильм о фильме) was released. The film […]

Hobgoblin / Baubas

Hobgoblin (Baubas) is an animated Lithuanian film from 1987. Created by Ilja Bereznickas, it was followed up by several sequels in the early 2000s. The screenplay was written by Bereznickas together with Pranas Morkus, who has worked on several animated films with Bereznickas and is also known for his live-action film work, including the documentary The Age of Czesław […]

The Cat’s Windmill / Kaķīša dzirnavas

The Cat’s Windmill (Kaķīša dzirnavas) is a Latvian short animated film. It is based on the short story/fairy tale of the same name, written by Kārlis Skalbe, a Latvian writer who lived and wrote in Latvia in the years of the Russian Empire and Soviet Union. Skalbe was also a Latvian nationalist and revolutionary, and left Latvia […]

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