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додано: 17-05-2004
E. Morgan Williams: Ruslana Wins! Ukraine Wins!

Версія до друку // Редагувати // Стерти // URL: http://maidan.org.ua/static/mai/1084742211.html

WASHINGTON - Ruslana Lyzichko led Ukraine to victory Saturday night at the Eurovision Song Contest held in Istanbul, Turkey, with an electrifying performance of her Ukrainian song "Wild Dances".

This was Ukraine's first victory in the Eurovision Song Contest and only the second time Ukraine has participated. The Eurovision Song Contest is the biggest music pageant of its kind in the world. 100 million people were expected to watch the finals held Saturday night. Ukraine will now host this major European event in May of 2005, of course for the first time.

This was a huge win for Ruslana and a major victory for Ukraine. Ruslana is from western Ukraine and is obviously very proud of her heritage, her country and sings in Ukrainian. Ruslana speaks out often about the beauty, culture and arts of the Carpathian region of Ukraine and presents a very visible, positive image of Ukraine whenever she speaks with the media and performs her music and dance.

I had the great fortune to hear Ruslana perform at the 2003 Hutsul Festival on Saturday evening, August 30, held in Vyshnytsya, Ukraine. It was amazing to see the entire soccer stadium, where the performance was held, filled to capacity with young people who were full of excitement and energy to hear one of their own perform modern Ukrainian music at such a world-class level.

One could only feel good about the future of Ukraine that night in Vyshnytsya hoping those young people would take that same energy and excitement with them in the future as they work to build a strong, independent, prosperous, post-genocidal and post-Soviet Ukraine, operating under the rule-of-law with a large, private, market-driven economy, totally integrated into Europe.

According to a Reuters article from Istanbul an ecstatic Ruslana said at a news conference after the show, ""All of us are making a positive image of Ukraine. I want my country to open up before you with friendship and hospitality." "I would like you to forget about Chernobyl," she said, referring to the 1986 nuclear accident which has long marred Ukraine's image."

Reuters reported that when asked what would be the first thing she did after returning to Kiev, Ruslana said: "I will do as Russell Crowe in (the
Hollywood blockbuster) 'Gladiator'. I will kneel in my homeland, take a piece of Ukrainian earth and kiss it."

Ruslana will obviously, after this major victory, have many more opportunities to speak out positively about Ukraine around Europe and the world. She will also have a much larger audience, one in the millions, before which to perform her exciting, new Ukrainian music and dance.

Ruslana will be an outstanding goodwill ambassador for her beloved Ukraine. We all wish her much more success in the future and look forward to Ukraine finally having an international goodwill ambassador, of the class as Ruslana, on the international stage. An ambassador, of which, we all can be very proud.

On Saturday night, May 22, 2004, in Istanbul, Turkey, Ruslana won and Ukraine won, big time!

COMMENTARY: E. Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor
Washington, D. C., Sunday, May 16, 2004

Версія до друку // Редагувати // Стерти // URL: http://maidan.org.ua/static/mai/1084742211.html

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