HSE Unity Fest: Unity of Cultures and New Friendly Ties at HSE University
At the beginning of November, HSE University’s Cultural Centre hosted HSE Unity Fest, a large-scale festival organised by HSE University’s Chamber of Nationalities. The event was attended by 33 national clubs of the university, whose representatives told festival guests about the traditions of different nations.
On the first day, members of Caucasian and European clubs represented Abkhazia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Bulgaria, Greece, Georgia, Macedonia, Moldova, Ossetia, Serbia, and Turkey, as well as the Jewish Club. The second day was devoted to the African, Arab, Latin American, and Indonesian clubs, as well as representatives of Bashkiria, Buryatia, Kalmykia, Tatarstan, Vietnam, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
Invited artists also performed on stage: they danced, played national musical instruments, and sang songs in different languages. In addition, everyone at HSE Unity Fest could taste traditional treats, talk with club representatives in person, and learn more about the customs of other countries. Master classes on national dances gave guests a chance to feel the full flavour of each culture through music and motion.
Anna Lesetskaya, first-year student of the Bachelor’s in Philology, HSE University
I decided to come to the festival today because I knew that there would be a club of my country—Moldova. I wanted to see how our national dishes—plăcintă and mămăligă—are prepared in Russia. For the first time in a long while, I felt like I was at home. I was also interested in learning more about other countries—Bulgaria, Armenia, and Turkey. I believe that a Unity Fest like this is necessary for people to broaden their horizons. I decided to move to Moscow because it is a city of opportunities. I wanted to build an independent life, but it’s more difficult to do it next to my parents. Representatives of many nations study and work at HSE University, and that’s cool.
Said Goziev, fourth-year student of the International Programme in Economics and Finance, HSE University
I am a member of the Uzbek club; I am from Uzbekistan. It was interesting for me to watch the performances by representatives of different nations’ today, as well as try national dishes. Such festivals really help us unite, especially in this difficult time.
Ekaterina Sinenosova, graduate of the Faculty of Political Science, Moscow State Linguistic University
I have Georgian roots; I have many relatives living in Georgia. I am interested in the culture of this country and feel that I belong to it. But, in addition to Georgian history, I am interested in learning about other countries, which is why I am here today. Such events are important at any time, and not only for today’s youth. It perfectly shows different cultures and all the diversity of our world.
Elina Agrba, graduate of the Bachelor’s in International Relations, HSE University
I am half Abkhazian. I was a member of the HSE Abkhazian Club, and I also helped a little with the organisation of this festival: I searched for various ethnic items and national clothes. Today I would like to attend the concert. Also, my friend and I have already tried various treats, and khachapuri turned out to be especially tasty.
Anna Buzuk, fourth-year student of the Bachelor’s in Law, HSE University
I am one of the organisers of the Moldovan Club. For today’s event, I helped prepare national dishes and came up with a quiz. Today, our treats include dolma and Gugutse’s Hat—a cake made from pancakes with cherries and sour cream on top. It is very tasty. Gugutse is our national character. I think it’s important to remember your roots when you’re abroad. Therefore, such festivals are especially needed by those who miss their homeland and who do not have the opportunity to go home often.