Every so often someone sends you one of those ‘you must see this’ video clips which you’re really glad you didn’t immediately consign to the electronic dustbin. One such arrived in my inbox yesterday, and though eight minutes is a long time to be taking a punt on someone’s assumptions about how I like to spend my time, this was worth every second.
I tried it on my daughter, who is studying the Second World War at the moment for a school play she is involved in, and she too was blown away by it. I have added it below so that visitors here can see if they share our enthusiasm, and that of the person who sent it to.
I must admit, I never imagined I would be blogging on the winner of ‘Ukraine’s Got Talent’ but it really is a fabulous piece of live art. It shows a young woman, Kseniya Simonova, 24, drawing a series of pictures with her fingers on an illuminated sand table. Bear with me.
It is mesmerising. She ‘paints’ pictures that tell the story of how ordinary people were affected by the German invasion during World War II.The images, projected onto a large screen, moved many in the audience to tears and she won the top prize of about £75,000. I have to say I would put her ahead of any act I ever saw on the British or American ‘Got Talent’ versions.
She begins with a couple sitting holding hands on a bench under a starry sky, but then warplanes appear and the happy scene is replaced by a woman’s face crying, but then a baby arrives and the woman smiles again. Once again war returns and Miss Simonova throws the sand into chaos from which a young woman’s face appears.
She quickly becomes an old widow, her face wrinkled and sad, before the image turns into a monument to an Unknown Soldier. This outdoor scene becomes framed by a window as if the viewer is looking out on the monument from within a house. In the final scene, a mother and child appear inside as a man stands outside, with his hands pressed against the glass, saying goodbye. The Great Patriotic War, as it is called in Ukraine , resulted in an estimated one in four of the population being killed.
Kseniya Simonova says: “I find it difficult enough to create art using paper and pencils or paintbrushes, but using sand and fingers is beyond me.’ No it’s not. She is brilliant. You will see panellists and audience members reduced to tears as she paints these different scenes. I hope you appreciate it as much as I did, and enjoy the fact that I’ve got through a whole blog without mentioning that the Tories don’t have a thought through policy programme for Britain. Oh damn, it just sneaked in at the end.
Enjoy the winner of Ukraine’s Got Talent. She really has.
*** Buy The Blair Years online and raise money for Labour (Labour’s got talent too) http://www.alastaircampbell.org/bookshop.php.