York - A Center of Russian Culture
From Russian New York
March 02, 2004
When tourists from Russia come to New York, they are amazed by
the diversity of Russian culture on the western side of the Atlantic.
They are fascinated by the so-called "American exotica" -
skyscrapers, cocktails, Broadway theaters. But on their way towards
having a civilized vacation, they realize that they actually never
left Russia. Even if they did, they didn't go too far. There is
a simple explanation - New York is Russians' second home.
to the latest statistics there are 1,500,000 Russians residing
in the New York City area. This makes it the seventh "Russian
city" based on population after Moscow, St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg
Until very recently conceiving the size of Russian-speaking
New York residents was relatively impossible. Previously immigrants
made arduous efforts to adapt to the new way of life, and thought
it could only be achieved if they fully merged with American
culture, completely forgetting their past.
Some of them, on the other hand,
settled in a beautiful secluded community at Brighton Beach following
all the traditions of their
homeland, buying yummy treats and pastries in stores that necessarily
have the root "Russ" in their names, and spending warm
days at a comfy beach near their house.
Now things have changed
dramatically. Russian New Yorkers started to get involved in
various cultural projects (some of international
scope): exhibitions, film festivals, publishing, movies. The
Russian language became almost official in the central offices
investment companies, theaters, museums, and other public places.
cultural has been expanding at astounding rates. There are 36
Russian newspapers, four TV stations and two radio channels
in the city. An abundant nightlife includes a number of clubs,
a group of promoters and DJs. The emergence of a bohemian strata
led to the discovery of many gifted artists, writers, designers,
cinematographers and, surprisingly, beautiful women.
recent year New York truly has become a center of Russian culture.
Let us hope that the tradition will continue.
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Translated from Russian by Natalya Calhoun