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Updates and News
SRF Trustees wish all members above all health and happiness for this New Year!
1. It seems that meeting up together in Edinburgh for the inauguration by Professor Peter France of our long-awaited series "Cultural Conversations" and the official SRF welcome by Lieutenant Dairmid Gunn to the new Russian Consul will not now be able to happen till the spring. However, in the meantime some of the later speakers in the series have agreed to give their sessions via zoom so please do watch this space for information about the dates and the zoom link so that you can join in. The link will be placed here on this page in advance of each session.
Professor Tom Hubbard, our new Trustee, will start these zoom sessions with his talk on Chekhov EITHER in late January or early February. Miroslava Bronnikova, the first Russian Director of the Edinburgh Fringe, will talk later in February (in Russian) about some of her interesting projects and Dr Andrea Gullotta will present a session in March about his ground- breaking research on the GULAG.
2 "Starling" should be starting its sessions (again via zoom) early in the New Year so please watch this space. Christine Bird has some interesting ideas about establishing a translation prize...
3. If you would like to place any item of interest on this page please do send this in to us via the SRF e-mail. We would love to hear from you!
4. For the foreseeable future please do not use the CEES postal address for any SRF communications as the CEES buildings are still closed. Thank you - please e-mail us instead.
5. Frank Donald has sent us in a link so that members can access fascinating information about naval destroyers. Please see :
If you would more information about this, please send a message to the SRF e-mail address and this can be forwarded to Frank.
6. Jenny Carr has kindly shared her beautiful website with us! Please see:
She will be adding to this so do keep looking! A lot of members have already enjoyed this.
7. Just a reminder that Tom Hubbard has agreed to become an SRF Trustee. With his great knowledge of matters Scottish and Slavic he will doubtless be a great asset to the "team". Members can read one of his most recent articles "Dostoevsky and Dickens" in the latest issue of the journal "Slavonica". Tom was one of the organisers of the very successful SRF/"Starling" event "Dr. Chekhov's Prescriptions" held last August - follow-up to come...
8. All SRF members should have received the leaflet with details of the proposed SRF trip to Russia in June 2021. Please contact us at once if you have not received this. Here is a short extract from it:
"SRF VISIT TO RUSSIA - 2-15 JUNE 2021.
Dear SRF members and Friends,
After a long delay since March 2020 we are now in a position to give you the proposal for a visit to Russia in June 2021. The general idea is for an SRF group with an interest in and knowledge of Russia to have a holiday, to see parts old, traditional Russia and refresh their opinions and ideas of modern Russia as shown in the new Moscow. The trip will include a classical music event, perhaps to the Bolshoi, depending on their summer programme. We will visit some of Moscow's lovely new and old parks and the long June days will add to the Festival feeling..."
The trip also includes visits to Suzdal and to Yaroslavl and visits to some of the wonderful places there as well as free time for private sightseeing. The dates - 2-15 June 2021; the cost -£2415 per person for a twin/double room (£450 supplement for a single room); the duration -13 nights and days, 3 nights in Moscow, 3 nights in Yaroslavl, 3 nights in Suzdal and 4 nights in Moscow.
This promises to be a wonderful trip and excellent value for money! Please contact Peter Harvey either by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone him at 00447508606540 if you want to find out more. Meetings will be arranged for those who show interest and after the hard times we have all been though sincere thanks are due to Peter and his team for this wonderful opportunity!!
9. "Red Army Choir" - 30 male voices needed!!! Alex McKay is looking to find 30 male singers to take part in a film to be made in Scotland in spring 2021. The singing will be in Russian and it will be paid work. Please e-mail Alex directly if you are interested or for more information email@example.com
10. Tanya Yurasova is offering Russian Courses on line. Please see:
tancam.uk/russian-course or e-mail her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit https://tancam.uk/russian
SHORT SUMMARIES OF THE CULTURAL CONVERSATIONS:
1. "Edwin Morgan and Russian Culture". My talk was to give an overview of Edwin Morgan's translation of Russian poetry, including some memories of my meetings with Eddie, notably the occasions when he met Andrey Voznesensky and Gennady Aygi in Edinburgh. Morgan, the first poet laureate (makar) of Scotland, was a prolific translator of poetry from about twenty European languages into both Scots and English. Translations from Russian bulk large in his 'Collected Translations' (1996). The most famous of these is 'Wi the Haill Voice', his vigorous and inventive transposition of Mayakovsky into Scots. I would have looked at the Mayakovsky alongside Morgan's always faithful translations from Pushkin and from Voznesensky and Aygi, two very different younger contemporaries. Professor Peter France, (University of Edinburgh)
2. Our second speaker in this series will be Dr Shamil' Khairov (University of Glasgow) who will deliver a "Meet the Author" session to launch his new book "Russian for All Occasions" which he co-authored with Dr. John Dunn. Dr Khairov will offer a very humorous introduction, looking at his own experiences of both learning and teaching the many Slavonic languages he masters and he will reveal some of the "secrets" that prompted him to produce this very special and useful volume...If you want to know what untied shoelaces had to do with this book, well you will have to wait and see...Dr Khairov's talk will combine both a light touch and serious scholarship...
3. Professor Tom Hubbard is no stranger to SRF members and he is one of the great masters of Russo-Scottish connections at many levels. In our third talk in the series Professor Hubbard will examine some new translations of Chekhov's short stories into Scots on which he has been working and he will also present some of his recent work on Chekhov's "The Cherry Orchard".
Members will wish to congratulate long-standing SRF member, Lieutenant Commander Dairmid Gunn, OBE, on this well-deserved honour. Author of a book on the convoys to Russia during the Second World War, interpreter in the 1950s and posted as assistant naval attache to Moscow in the 1960s, Lieutenant Commander Gunn has served the cause of the promotion of cultural relations between Russia and the UK in a tireless and in an excellent manner. In the 1980s, for example, he was the chairman of the Scottish Branch of the GB-USSR Association and a member of its Council. This has been a splendid start to the summer and warmest wishes and congratulations are passed on to Dairmid!
July 2019 MIROSLAVA BRONNIKOVA has recently been elected as the first ever Russian to be on the Board of Directors of the Edinburgh Fringe! Her appointment will be ratified at the AGM to be held on August 21st. Miroslava reveals that her "...love affair with Edinburgh started in 1999 when I first came to visit the city with my family for a couple of days in late August". In 2000 Miroslava spent 3 months studying at St George's School for Girls in Edinburgh and she returned to the city in 2013 to complete a Cambridge CELTA Course. With her husband Ivan she founded a theatre and dance company in Moscow and they are especially proud of their production based on Bulgakov's " Master and Margarita" For information on the two shows Miroslava has at this years Fringe please see https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/all-star-cabaret-the-free-fringe-gala
Miroslava's e-mail address is email@example.com and she will be very happy to hear from SRF members!