Stop the harassment of rock musicians Andrei Makarevich and Diana Arbenina

posted 27 Sept 2014, 13:02 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 27 Sept 2014, 13:05 ]
24 September 2014 

Source: (info
Russia continues to cancel concerts by artists who come out in support of Ukraine. Echo of Moscow reports that in Kirov they have cancelled concerts of the lead member of Time Machine, Andrei Makarevich and leader of the group Night Snipers, Diana Arbenina. 

Agreements to hold concerts by Makarevich have been cancelled in Samara, Kazan, Novosibirsk and a number of other Russian towns. 

The reasons are for allegedly “poor ticket sales or technical failures”. 

Promoter Sergei Orlov stated: “At this stage it seems better to delay concerts. We love and respect his creativity, but now the mood and climate here is very different between Andrei Makarevich and us.” He has not ruled out that in the near future the rock star’s concerts on stage in Kirov will still be possible. 

In November in Kirov there was to be a concert by Diana Arbenina. But writes that it has also been put off, having replaced it with a KVN comedy show. 

As Diana Arbenina wrote on her Facebook page, her scheduled concert for 29th September in Krasnodar has similarly been cancelled. 

In a statement from the group they say: “There will be no concert in Krasnodar on 29th September for the reason that on this day a fire is planned in the club!” 

Interfax reports that in Krasnodar Diana Arbenina was planning to appear at the Arena Hall club. Administrators of the organisation did not state by phone their reasons for the concert cancellation, but suggested tickets booked earlier would be refunded, or else exchanged for tickets for other events. 

At the beginning of September Diana Arbenina recorded a video message for her listeners. She said that concerts had been cancelled in eight cities: Tver, Kursk, Belgorod, Orel, Kazan, Volgograd, Kostroma, Nizhny Novgorod. 

“The reasons for this are quite varied. ‘The roof was leaking, there was a repair in the wing, the venue was suddenly appropriated for other municipal needs.’ All this, of course, is lies,” said Arbenina. 

The Ministry of Culture claims that it has nothing to do with the cancellation of the concerts. “The Russian Ministry of Culture is not among the organisers of the festival or the tour; therefore we cannot comment on this particular situation,” its press office said in a statement. 

On 5th September 2014 a poetry evening was called off in which Diana Arbenina was to have participated, one of the events of the Moscow Bookmarket festival. 

The concert by Arbenina in Vladimir, planned for 15th October, was also under threat since “pro-government” groups perceived in the behaviour of the singer “support for pro-Ukrainian activists” and collected signatures against her performance. In the end they transferred it to another location in the city. 

The cancellation of concerts by well known Russian rock musicians Andrei Makarevich and Diana Arbenina began just after their performances in Ukraine. 

In August 2014 the press secretary of the Russian president Dmitri Peskov called the situation that has developed in relation to Andrei Makarevich “reactions of public opinion.” Earlier Makarevich wrote an open letter to Putin in which he asked the president to stop the “smear campaign” against him. 

Translated by Frances Robson