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“Arabian Nights” to be staged in St. Petersburg

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By Laman Ismayilova

Fikrat Amirov's "One Thousand and One Nights" will be presented in Russia.

The Primorsky Stage of the Mariinsky Theater (Vladivostok) will stage the ballet as part of its tour to St. Petersburg scheduled for January 15-22.

The tour will open with the St. Petersburg premiere of "A Thousand and One Nights" based on the famous fairy tale.

Chief conductor and musical director of the Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater Ayyub Guliyev has been invited to conduct the ballet in St. Petersburg.

"One Thousand and One Nights" is a collection of Middle Eastern folk tales compiled in Arabic during the Islamic Golden Age. Known in English as the "Arabian Nights", the work is about Scheherazade, a Sassanid Queen, who tells a series of stories to her husband, King Shahryar in order to delay her execution.

The exciting story of Scheherazade laid the foundation of the ballet of the same name. "One Thousand and One Nights" is a ballet in two acts by Fikrat Amirov to a libretto by playwright Magsud and Rustam Ibrahimbayovs.

The ballet's new version was staged by chief choreographer of the Primorsky stage of the Mariinsky Theater Eldar Aliyev and presented at Film Festival at the 5th Mariinsky International Far East Festival in August.

More than 300 costumes with hand embroidery were made for the ballet show. Some of them were made at the workshop, while most part by experienced craftsmen in St. Petersburg.

Magnificent performance of ballet dancers left no one indifferent. The ballet was accompanied by the soloist of the Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater, tar musician Ramin Azimov.

Azerbaijan's traditional music instruments – tar and naghara were presented to the theater on behalf of the national musicians.

The long-necked music instrument featured in the score of Fikrat Amirov. The eminent composer started his musical journey as a tar performer.
The idea to add tar performance came from Eldar Aliyev. Ramin Azimov, the soloist of the Azerbaijan State Opera and Ballet Theater, performed on tar during the premiere.

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MoD releases video from Fuzuli`s Ashaghi Aybasanli village

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Azerbaijani Defense Ministry has released a video from Fuzuli`s Ashaghi Aybasanli village.

The footage:

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National gymnasts to perform at European Championships in Switzerland

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By Laman Ismayilova

National gymnastics team will take part in the European Championships in Artistic Gymnastics in Basel, Switzerland.

The Championships will bring together 323 gymnasts from 40 countries.

Azerbaijan will be represented at the European Championships by seven athletes upon the preliminary application: five gymnasts of the men's team and two gymnasts of the women's team.

The senior male and female gymnasts will compete for individual titles on April 21-25.

Founded in 1956, AGF comprises seven gymnastics disciplines recognized by the International Federation of Gymnastics (FIG).

The federation has experienced a revival since 2002. The renewed federation has brought gymnastics to a completely new level.

The high-level organization of the gymnastics events did not remain unnoticed. The International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) included the Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation (AGF) into the list of the meritorious federations.

For many years, the AGF has been included into the FIG list of the Top 10 gymnastics federations.

From 2014 to 2019, the Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation was included in the list of the FIG 10 strongest federations and for the last three years it has led the list.

In 2020, AGF managed to host 3 competitions at the beginning of the year.

First, the trampoline gymnasts visited Baku to participate in the World Cup qualifiers for the Olympic Games. Afterwards, the young men's gymnasts competed for the AGF Junior Trophy. Moreover, Azerbaijani gymnasts managed to win 2 silver and 1 bronze medal during the competition.

Another licensed competition for the Olympics – the World Cup in gymnastics was also organized in the country.

The most successful event for the national gymnasts in 2020 was the participation in the European Rhythmic Gymnastics Championship in Ukraine.

The gymnastic team consisting of Zeynab Hummatova, Darya Sorokina, Maryam Safarova, Laman Alimuradova and Elizabeth Luzan, won a silver medal in all-around. This medal is the first medal in the history of Azerbaijan's rhythmic gymnastics won by the national team in group all-around competition.

National team also won bronze medals in the competition with 3 hoops and 2 pairs of clubs.

The next medal was won by the team as well. Narmin Bayramova, Alina Gozalova, Ilona Zeynalova, Leyli Agazade, they grabbed bronze medal in this program according to the total number of the joint points.

In addition, a joint virtual competition in rhythmic gymnastics was also organized for gymnasts from Azerbaijan and Israel.

The competition, called "Battle", was attended by teams from both countries licensed for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

AGF also focuses on improving the skills of coaches and referees. Thus, the gymnastics courses were organized for local judges and coaches last year.

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Turkic Culture and Heritage Foundation presents book by Turkish poet

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By Laman Ismayilova

The International Turkic Culture and Heritage Foundation has presented Kenan Charbogan's book "Korkutname", published by TURKSOY.

The book was written on the basis of the epic "Kitabi-Dede Gorgud", which is considered the common heritage of the Turkic world.

In her opening remarks, President of the International Turkic Culture and Heritage Foundation Gunay Afandiyeva stressed that the building of the organization was allocated for permanent use by a special decree of the President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev.

She emphasized that the official opening of the building took place on October 14, 2019 as part of the 7th Summit of Heads of State of Turkic-speaking countries.

The summit brought together foreign ministers of member and observer countries of Foundation and heads of Turkic-speaking international organizations.

Gunay Afandiyeva congratulated the participants of the event on the historic victory gained due to the return of Azerbaijan's ancestral lands adding that this victory gave a sense of pride not only to Azerbaijan, but to the entire Turkic world as a whole. She also noted that at the end of last year she visited the country's Fuzuli and Aghdam regions liberated from Armenian occupation.

The speaker underlined that during the visit of the Secretary General of the Turkic Council Baghdad Amreyev and the Secretary General of TURKSOY Dusen Kaseinov to Azerbaijan, the heads of the three Turkic international organizations held a number of high-level meetings and discussed important issues.

The President of the Foundation mentioned that the heads and members of the delegation of the Turkic Council, TURKSOY, the International Turkic Culture and Heritage Foundation visited Fuzuli and Aghdam as well. She emphasized that the Fuzuli and Aghdam were vandalized by Armenian occupants.

The President of the Foundation noted that the preliminary presentation of the book "Korkutname" was held in the city of Fuzuli. Secretary General of TURKSOY Dusen Kaseinov presented the book to the Foundation on the occasion of the liberation of Fuzuli from the occupation.

"Thus, the International Turkic Culture and Heritage Foundation is the organization that first set foot on these ancient lands of Azerbaijan at the senior level, and TURKSOY was the organization that held the first presentation there," said Afandiyeva.

The presentation of this book in Fuzuli has a symbolic meaning, once again demonstrating through the advice of Dede Gorgud, which personifies the unity of the Turkic world, the solidarity of the two fraternal organizations. The preface to the book belongs to the President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and this once again shows that Turkey is always close to Azerbaijan.

Azerbaijan's Culture Minister Anar Karimov congratulated President of the International Turkic Culture and Heritage Foundation Gunay Afandiyeva and Secretary General of TURKSOY Dusen Kaseinov on the organization of such an important event and emphasized its symbolic significance.

In his speech, the Culture Minister noted that the year 2020 was the most memorable and significant in the history of statehood of both the independent Republic of Azerbaijan and its people. He also noted the restoration of Azerbaijan's sovereignty, ensuring its cultural and geographical integrity.

"It is no coincidence that the form of expression of the history of Turkic folklore is precisely the epic. In the just struggle of Azerbaijan in the second Karabakh war, the entire Turkic world led by the Republic of Turkey, showed moral solidarity. This year in Karabakh, which will be restored, we will hold the Vagif poetry days and we especially invite our dear poet Kenan Charbogan to this literary festival. The book "Korkutname", written by Kenan Charbogan and published with the support of TURKSOY, is one of the most important books that have been published over the past 10 years. "Dede Gorgud" is a literary monument of Azerbaijan and all Turkic peoples in general. This epic is a very reliable and worthy source in the manifestation of our history and national identity," he said.

The minister recalled the words of the great leader Heydar Aliyev about this epic: "Kitabi-Dede Gorgud" belongs to the entire Turkic world.

Anar Karimov also mentioned that noted the Order of President Ilham Aliyev on monumental sculptures, memorial and architectural complexes in Azerbaijan, signed in 2007.

Dede Gorgud park was laid in Baku on an area of 6 hectares, and a monument to Dede Gorgud was erected in the center of the park in accordance with the order.

In 2018, the heritage of Dede Gorgud , presented jointly by Azerbaijan, Turkey and Kazakhstan, was included in the UNESCO Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage as an example of a multinational culture of folklore, folk tales and music.

The versification of the 12 stanzas of the epic by Kenan Charbogan is a worthy contribution to Turkic culture. The fact that Kenan Charbogan devoted 10 years of his life to this work shows his respect and love for our artistic heritage, as well as his dedication to his origins as a writer.

At the end of his speech, Anar Karimov thanked everyone who contributed to the publication of the book.

Secretary General of TURKSOY Dusen Kaseinov congratulated the participants on the Glorious Victory and noted that he was glad to see each of them at the presentation of the book " Korkutname ".

He expressed great satisfaction with the ceremony held in Baku, the capital of the fraternal Republic of Azerbaijan, at the International Turkic Culture and Heritage Foundation. Speaking about the book, Dusen Kaseinov stressed that the widespread epic of the entire Turkic world "Dede Gorgud" is one of the richest literary treasures.

Speaking at the event, Chairperson of the Committee on Culture of the Milli Majlis Ganira Pashayeva, Chairperson of the Azerbaijan Writers Union, People's Writer Anar, Ambassador of Turkey to Azerbaijan Erkan Ozoral, Rector of the Azerbaijan University of Languages, People’s writer Kamal Abdulla, Deputy, Head of the Ataturk Center, Academician Nizami Jafarov and Director of Azerbaijan National Library Karim Tahirov spoke about the significance of holding such events, shared their views on the historical monument Kitabi-Dede Gorgud, and also noted the importance of further research in this direction and attracting youth towards deeper in this area.

Initiated in 2012, Turkic Culture and Heritage Foundation focuses on preservation of Turkic heritage in member countries as well as conducting projects in collaboration with partners in third countries.

The Foundation provides assistance in the protection, study and promotion of Turkic culture and heritage through supporting and funding various activities, projects and programs. It carries out its activities in cooperation with TURKSOY and the Turkic Academy.

Cooperation Council of the Turkic Speaking States (CCTSS) is an intergovernmental organization, which aims at promoting comprehensive cooperation among Turkic Speaking States.

The organization was established by the Nakhchivan Agreement, which was signed at the Turkic Summit in 2009.

In order to fulfill the objectives and tasks of the CCTSS, the organization has been divided into the following structures: Council of Heads of States; Council of Foreign Ministers, Senior Officials Committee, Council of Elders, Secretariat, Coordination Committee, Representation Office of the Turkic Council in Budapest.

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