Russia's No. 1 Exhibition prepares to dedicate the summer's last weekend to celebration of the ethnic and cultural diversity of Russia and the nations of the former Soviet Union. Muscovites and visitors are invited to attend the Apricot Fest on 28 August and National Hospitality Festival on 29 August. The latter event comes to VDNH for the first time. The programme features music and dance concerts, a photographic exhibition of ethnic customs, several sports tournaments, shows and theatrical performances. All events comply with the anti-coronavirus prescriptions of Rospotrebnadzor. Admission is free.
The multi-ethnic Apricot Fest
On 28 August, Saturday, VDNH welcomes visitors to the Apricot Fest, held by the Union of Armenians in Russia every year for 11 years. To mark the occasion, the exhibition Ethnic Diversity of the Peoples of Russia and the CIS will open in VDNH's Central Alley that day. The 60 photographs on display explore the ethnic folk dress theme.
The Apricot Football mini football competition will kick off at 10 a.m. on the site next to Pavilion No. 27 Physical Culture and Sports. The ten competing teams come from the cities of Yaroslavl, Tambov, Nizhny Novgorod, Balashikha, Dolgoprudny, Reutov, Mytishchi and Istra. The winner award ceremony will take place at 8 p.m. The Chess Club will be holding a backgammon tournament from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., followed by a chess tournament from 3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Prior registration is required for those wishing to take part in the tournaments.
A show of Armenian folk dress will be staged in the Lectorium of Pavilion No. 58 Slovo Centre from 1 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
On that day, House of Culture has prepared a show programme featuring song and dance collectives from many different countries and parts of Russia. Visitors are welcome from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is by prior registration. The Apricot Jam jazz fest will hit the outdoor stage outside Pavilion No. 44 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. The list of performers includes the Armenian acts Margarita Pozoyan, Lianna Aroyan, Anait Pogosyan and Tony Karapetyan Trio. The Platov Cossack Brass Orchestra of Moscow will perform outside Pavilion No. 68 Republic of Armenia from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
At 2:30, 3:30 and 4:30 p.m., children and their parents will be welcome in the Round Hall of Pavilion No. 68 Republic of Armenia to watch the puppet show The Three Little Pigs by the Moscow Armenian Theatre. Call +7(965)215-42-70 for registration. Meanwhile, outside the pavilion and House of Culture, amusement areas for the littlest visitors will be abuzz with fun activities led by vibrant animators.
The ground between Pavilion No. 1 Central and the Friendship of Peoples Fountain will serve as the stage for celebrated rope-walker Rasul Abakarov from 2:30 a.m. to 3:00 a.m. that same Saturday.
The music of famous Armenian composers Aram Khachaturian and Arno Babajanyan, Armenian and other folk tunes will sound all day across VDNH. There will be plenty of ripe apricots for all, fresh from Armenia.
The National Hospitality Festival of the Peoples of Russia and the CIS
On Sunday, 29 August, festivities will continue with the new National Hospitality Festival of the Peoples of Russia and the CIS, organised by VDNH in partnership with the Federal Ethnic Cultural Autonomy of Russian Armenians in honour of the 30th anniversary of the Commonwealth of Independent States.
Matches of the football Friendship Cup will be played from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. outside Pavilion No. 27 Physical Culture and Sports. Playing in the tournament will be the Apricot Football winning teams and teams representing the Georgian, Kyrgyz, Tajik, Buryat, Chuvash, Nogai and Armenian communities and diasporas. Boardgame tournaments will continue at the Chess Club. The time between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. is reserved for backgammon fans, who will give way to chess fans from 3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Prior registration is required for those wishing to take part in the tournaments.
House of Culture will be hosting the Ethnic Theatre Festival on that day. The Moscow Armenian Theatre will perform the comedy play Rubik's Cube, or the Geometry of Love at 12 noon. Admission is by registration. The Shalom Jewish Theatre of Moscow will perform The Jewish Tales at 3 p.m. Follow this link to register. The Moscow-based independent theatre company Bagazh will perform the immersive play Live Forever at 6 p.m. Registration required.
The concert featuring Russian, Korean, Ossetian, Armenian, Greek, Chuvash and other folk collectives starts at 1:30 p.m. by Pavilion No. 1 Central, on the Friendship of Peoples Fountain side. In the meantime, a Friendship March will proceed down Central Alley, led by a brass band and joined by diverse ethnic groups.
The Stunt Show featuring the world's top circus strongmen Sergei Agajanyan and Sergei Chuprina will open at 2:30 p.m. at the stadium in Ostankino Park. The rope-walker Rasul Abakarov will perform at 3:30 p.m. in the area between Pavilion No. 1 Central and the Friendship of Peoples Fountain.
An amusement campus for children will open from 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. by Pavilion No. 68 Republic of Armenia. The photography exhibition Ethnic Diversity of the Peoples of Russia and the CIS will remain open in Central Alley. Popular tunes from different parts of the world will be playing on VDNH radio.
All festival events follow the anti-coronavirus prescriptions of Rospotrebnadzor. Visitors are expected to wear face masks inside the pavilions and observe social distancing everywhere on the grounds.