Russia’s Yakutia: Culture from the Far North

A NTDTV report about Yakutia’s presentation in St. Petersburg.

This is how guests are welcomed at the Peoples of the Far North Cultural Festival.

The Republic of Sakha, also known as Yakutia, takes up one sixth of Russia—far northern Russia, that is.

The Festival organizers are eager to demonstrate the region’s unique culture.

[Galina Makarova, Sakha Republic Representative, Saint Petersburg]:
“This event is primarily dedicated to celebrate the Yakut language, which is honored every year on February 13th.”

For ages, the art of Yakut storytelling was kept alive by word of mouth only. These people did not have an alphabet until the beginning of the 20th century.

Festival guests are learning how to write modern Yakut in a master class.

The culture and traditions of the Yakut originated in the harsh climate of the region where a record low temperature of minus 94 degrees Fahrenheit was set.

It comes as no surprise that even traditional games were all designed to be played indoors.

[Stepa and Danya, Visitors]:
“I wanted to let him win, he just doesn’t remember. We really liked competing. And we really liked everything here.”

This instrument is called a “khomus” and is famous around the world for its unusual sound.

[Таtiana Shishova, Visitor]:
“Besides playing the instrument, they added singing, which together produced nature sounds. We heard the sound of melting snow, the beginning of spring, and a cuckoo bird in the forest.”

These children and adolescents with developmental problems came from a local center.

Military school students are helping them to walk through the uneven floors of the museum.

Visitors helping visitors learn about a new culture—organizers of the festival believe that it is a lesson in kindness and tolerance for everyone.

[Аlexander Ivanov, Director, Developmental Center]:
“This will probably make our children, as well as our guests, both adults and children, a little more tolerant of everyone, even the smallest population.”

Household objects, cartoons, and other artifacts are all here to help guests experience Yakutia and its culture.

Via NTD, Saint Petersburg, Russia

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