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CONTACT: LOIS GRAY
International Programs
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-2026
e-mail: lois-gray@uiowa.edu

Release: April 3, 2000

UI hosts traditional Russian tea party at CREEES Slavic Bazaar April 16

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The sights, sounds and tastes of a traditional Russian Tea Party will come alive at the University of Iowa during The Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (CREEES) annual Slavic Bazaar. This year's offering, "Invitation to a Russian Tea Party," will be Sunday, April 16, from noon to 5 p.m., in the International Center Lounge.

The event, which is free and open to the public, will allow people to experience a traditional Russian tea party -- an informal gathering where people of all ages exchange ideas and share goodwill through light entertainment and festive delicacies, said CREEES Outreach Coordinator Karen Myers.

"This is a wonderful way to celebrate springtime," Myers said. "The Tea Party will promote an exchange of ideas about cultural diversity through fun activities and events. We're also pleased to have the participation of so many talented university and community members in this year's Slavic Bazaar." This year's program includes performances by professional musicians, children's art activities, music, regional foods and much more.

Myers added that the interactive programming of this year's Slavic Bazaar is designed specifically for an inter-generational audience from the university, local schools and general community.

"The music and activity programs planned for the event primarily are intended to introduce non-specialists to the sights and sounds of the Russian cultural experience," Myers said. "We hope that school children and the general community alike will come away with a keener awareness of a geographical region that is presently under-represented in the public school curriculum, and an interest in learning more about the diverse cultures and traditions of this part of the world."

Highlights of the event include performances by the Kansas City-based ensemble, The Cultural Kaleidoscope at 12:30 and 4 p.m. Sergei Shapoval is artistic director and presenter of this ensemble. He will lead the interactive, multimedia performance, which includes a little bit of geography, language, history, dance and music -- all to a rollicking beat. The audience will have a chance to play authentic Russian instruments and maybe even perform a folk dance or two.

The program also features a performance by University of Iowa assistant professor and recording artist Oleg Timofeyev on the Russian 7-string guitar; a children's play presented by members of a local Russian children's club; Russian rock and folk music performances, a Russian karaoke sing-a-long (words provided!); different foods to sample and enjoy, and more. Children and adults will be able to take part in on-going art activities and Russian children's games, listen to stories and watch Russian cartoon videos.

Co-sponsors of the event include CREEES, International Programs, the International Crossroads Community (ICC), the UI department of Russian, the UI department of history, the UI School of Music, the Center for International Rural and Environmental Health (CIREH), the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, College of Business Entrepreneurial Center, School of Social Work, Women in Science & Engineering (WISE), Iowa City Foreign Relations Council (ICFRC) and Council for International Visitors to Iowa Cities (CIVIC), and the College of Law.

The International Center is located at the end of Ferson Avenue in Iowa City, off of Park Road. For more information, contact Karen Myers at (319) 335-1442. Following is the schedule of events for the bazaar (which is also available online at http://www.uiowa.edu/~creees) :

Ongoing between performances -- children's art activities and art show; children's story telling and videos; food and tea tasting.

Noon -- International Center Lounge Opens (Program begins at 12:30 p.m.)

12:30 p.m. -- Interactive Performance by Sergei Shapoval, Cultural Kaleidoscope.

Part I. Russian music, dance, geography, language

1 p.m. -- 7-String Guitar: Classical and folk songs played by recording artist Oleg Timofeyev and folk song performance: Iowa City Russian emigre community

2 p.m. -- Leonid Stepanov, Iowa Children's Museum, presents a Russian children's play, children's games and face painting

3 p.m. -- Acoustic Guitar: Music and Lyrics by recording artist Viktor Kovelsky.

3:30 p.m. -- Special Guests: Musicians from Iowa City and across the state.

4 p.m. -- Interactive Performance by Sergei Shapoval, Cultural Kaleidoscope.

Part II. Russian music, dance, geography, language

5 p.m. -- CLOSE

(EDITOR'S NOTE: This event provides excellent opportunities for photos and broadcast footage because of the wonderful blend of dance, food and music. Please call Karen Myers at 335-1442 or Lois Gray at 335-2026 if you are interested covering this event.)