Victor Yushchenko took part in a ceremony to open a new building of the Kyiv Puppet Theatre, the President's press office reported.

Having noted that it was symbolically being held on St. Nicholas Day, he thanked all involved in this project: “I would like to congratulate the kids and all adults who contributed to this festivity – you did a great job that would make posterity happy. Our children and grandchildren will live in this world, and that’s wonderful.”

The President said this day was really historic because “theatres have rarely been opened in Kyiv in the past decades.”

“Today, we see the fruits of labor of builders, artists and architects,” he stressed, reminding those present that the puppet theatre had been performing even without its own premise.

The Head of State gave a symbolic golden key to Theatre Director Mykola Petreneko, and together with the Kyiv Mayor cut the ribbon in front of the central entrance.

Then Yushchenko took part in a ceremony to consecrate the building.

Humanitarian Premier Vyacheslav Kyrylenko, Culture and Tourism Minister Ihor Likhovy, First Deputy Secretariat Chief-of-Staff Ivan Vasyunyk, Kyiv Mayor Oleksandr Omelchenko, and Kyiv Patriarch Philareth attended the ceremony.

*Ukraine’s oldest puppet theatre, it was established on October 27, 1927. In 2007, the theatre will celebrate its eightieth anniversary. On its initiative, international festivals of puppet theatres have been conducted in Kyiv since 1991,hosting leading theatres from Belgium, Austria, Canada, Slovakia, Finland, Japan, China, Sweden, Switzerland, Germany, Russia, Bulgaria, Turkey and other countries.

The Kyiv Puppet Theatre represented Ukraine at prestigious international forums and festivals in Austria, the United States of America, Peru, Canada, Slovakia, Japan, South Korea, Poland, Belgium, Belarus, and Russia.

In 1995, it was awarded the Druzhba International Prize. Having staged more than forty national and foreign plays, the theatre has not had its premise since 1987.


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