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Real Luhansk

Aleksandr Tkachenko

Александр Ткаченко

Aleksandr Tkachenko: “Football is my life, love and passion”

Today Aleksandr Tkachenko, the legend of Lugansk football, USSR champion of 1972, honored coach of Ukraine, “Zarya’s” goalkeeper, is turning 65!

Aleksander has given most of his life to Lugansk “Zorya”. He was defending the colors of the team from 1967 to 1978, from 1981 to 1984, in 1986 and 1987. All together the legendary goalkeeper held 405 games with the team and let 420 goals pass. 

We are sincerely wishing Mr. Tkachenko a very Happy Birthdya! May he have strong health, family wellbeing, have lots of luck and success at his work in FC “Zorya” team.


Press-services corresponded congratulated Aleksander Tkachenko on his jubilee and had a chat with the legend of Lugasnk football, remembering “Zorya’s” golden days, going through Mr. Tkachenko’s entire career days.

«My dad did not want me to be a goalkeeper»

- I would like to take this opportunity and congratualate you, Aleksander, on your jubilee…
- Thank you very much. It’s rather pleasing that veterans are remembered, and that our famous champion year of 1972 is not forgotten either.

- Well, we will talk about that year a bit later, but for a start let’s talk about how you connected your life to football and why this sport?

- It could not have been any other way. I lived 100 meters away from Kupiyansk “Locomotive” stadium, and moreover, my dad was a goalkeeper for the team. That’s why I was on the field from very early childhood. I joined acuall training course since I was 9. 


Luhansk Academic Regional Theater of Russian Drama

New theatre started its operation in Lugan in 1939.

It consisted of Leningrad theatre school graduates - 32 people – and 15 actors with substantial work experience. Amongst those were people who began their career in “Donbass Shakhterka”— Z. Utekhina, V. Klopotov, V. Shmuklosvky. Such a merge had its own pros and cons. They needed to find common ground, to achieve a united method to work on a play. This required the need to work conduct regular pedagogical education with the youth. Student of Y. Zavadsky, one of the masters of the stage, A. Tunkel lead the theatre team. V. Ayvazyan became the Art Director, and the Director position was taken by a man with strong organizational talents K. Perlov.

October 26, 1939 was the date of the grand opening of the theatre in the building of V. Lenin cultural centre. They performed «Pavel Grekov», a play by B. Voytekhova and L. Lench. It was a rather provocative play in that time.

Both the Theatre Director and the actors took the most thorny path in creating true to life and realistic plays, managing to give social characteristics to the event and to the character. During those years they were creating the ensemble, defining their style and creating their school or theatre performance.  It was the unification of the spoken word and the pantomime, innovation of set design, sound effects, lightening setup, utilization of modern technology – it was a synthesis of multiple arts.

The theatre worked for a little bit over a season. And then the World War II began…

Based on the order of the Committee on the Affairs of Art of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic the theatre was disbanded. Nonetheless, the actors decided to keep their team. The team was offered an opportunity to leave for Uzbekistan, where they were assigned to be in Namangan. The arrived on December 5, 1941 and started working immediately.

The plays of Lugansk Russian Drama Theatre took place in the former building of the Youth Theatre, in the Officer’s Club, in the creamery plant building.  The Directors were E. Grinchuk and N. Gaydarov, I Alekseev was the Art Director. The team was performing until April 8, 1942.

On November 3, 1943 the theatre received an invitation from the liberated Lugansk.

With warm greetings from Lugansk natives the theatre opened the season with a play called “Wait for me”.

Even in the years of creative search, the theatre obtained its reputation in the 40-ies with their works on classical plays. Director N. Gaydarov  “The Stone King” by Lesya Ukrainka (Don Juan — A. Romantsev, Anna – Z. Utekhina), «Maria Stuart» F. Schiller (Maria - Z. Utekhina), А. Khodyrev — «Masquerade» by М. Lermontov (Arbenin - А. Khodyrev, Nina — R. Svetinskaya), G. Narkovsky — «Wolves and sheep», «In a Sprightful Place» by A. Ostrovsky, Alkhovsky —«Truth is good, happiness is better» by A. Ostrovsky.

Mature performance was noticed in thework of Arensky (Linyaev, Groznoe), Z. Korn (Kupavina, Evgeniya), Chikalov (Bessudny), N. Garganova (Murzavetskaya). A talented actress R. Svetinskaya, while performing the heroines of Ostrovsky (Olya and Annushka), raising the issues of passionate hart, the theme of a person, who finds himself it a very difficult place in the “dark kingdom”. She showed herself a completely surprising and unpredictable in the image of Glafira in “Wolves and Sheep”. Y. Arensky (Arkadiy Schastlivtsev) and G. Kamenskaya (Gurmyzhskaya) were also absolutely brilliant in “Lesya”. Director G. Nazarkovsky , in cooperation with Art Direcor Bocharov, passionately worked on “The Last One” by M. Gorky. This play brought luck to Y. Arensky (Ivan Kolomiytsev), E.Vrublevska (Sokolova), and to a young actress T. Tsymbaliuk as Verochka.

Working on classics was very benefitial for the theatre, which began in the process of the modernization of theatre’s stylistics. This continued in the 50-ies, where they were trying to find new resources of expression, giving the plays genre identity and  scenic completion of the play.

P. Vetrov became the Head of the Theatre in 1952. Starting  1937, after completing Leningrad Theatre Institute , Piotr Isidorovich is working in Ukraine, in Lugansk, Donesk and Kirovograd theatres.  In 1952-1959 he becomes the Director of Lugansk Russian Drama Theatre, and in 1963—1968-м — of the united Russian and Ukrainian Theatres.  He was known as a master of prominent director works, where he showed his ability to read and feel the author, his style, and the ability to express his civil views: «Breach» by B. Lavrientiev, «Makar Dubrava» of A. Korneychuk, «The Devil's Disciple» by B. Shaw, «The Last» by M. Gorky, as well as works of P. Vertov.

With such creative baggage, with comprehensive understanding of the educational role of the theatre, with expectations of being studious in work, high theatre culture, P. Vetrov came to Lugansk Theatre. A. Kozhenovsky was invited as the Director, who was Vetrov’s fellow student in the Youth Theatre. And I. Shpakovsky became the Administrative Director, and N. Blekhev his Vice.

Director’s works started to show the feeling of modernity, the simplicity an d truth were always present, the play, as well as all of the heroes of the play were complete. The viewer was able to emerge in the depth of human soul and experience unique phycology of scenes. Every play of the theatre tried to touch upon a relevant aspect of life.

P. Vetrov was a very talented actor in both contemporary and classical plays, being able to portray the psychological picture of the hero, mainaiting compele character development of different types of people. Romantic enlightenment, burning passion – those are the basics of art of P. Vetrov.

Pithiness, but at the same time importance of characteristics made his parts full, yet reserved. He had unique ability to combine poetic impression with appearance to convey social importance of the part. E. Vetrova was an actress with broad range of roles. She was albe to show the power of feelings, sincerely and temperament, to point of the stressful situation, to introduce the character gradually , yet with constant tension. T. Tsymbaliuk, E. Pozdniakova and L. Sinelnikova learned and picked up this skill from Vetrova.

Starting as an extra taking on leading roles in the future – that was the path of N. Raschupkin. He played the part of Zvonariov (“Port-Arthur”), Vanya («Ivan Rybakov»), Silvio («Servant of two masters»), along with P. Vetrov, part of Richard, simultaneously the part of Petya in «Lesya» and the postmaster in «The Inspector General», Misha in  vaudeville  «Three Philomels, house  17» and Kosya in comedy  «Other’s child».

A. Zhakharova, A. Yatsenko, B. Gusev, L. Kushnariov were also actively involved in the plays. Then N. CHurakova, a very talented addition joined the team. D. Vitchenko, N. Zaika, V. Sedlovsky played their first parts here. They became the actors of Vetrov school, learning how to create characters in evolution, to see the perspective..

The main theatre tendency changed. It turned to strengthening the character roles. One could clearly see the actor’s striving to show the deeper side of the hero, the generalization of character, yet showing a rather specific ideal and philosophical position of the character.

...In the fall of 1959 theatre’s Art Dirctor P. Vetrov left the theatre.  Several of his confederates left with him: A. Kozhenovsky, E. Pozdniakova, E. Vetrova, youth crew – D. Vitchenko, A. Gubsky, A. Dmitrieva, N. Zaika.

A rather difficult period started for the theatre when Vetrov left. Dicrectors changed one after another – A. Fomin, S. Shpanov, V. Nenashev.

On January 1, 1963 the Council o Ministers of the Soviet Republic of Ukraine adopted a decree about uniting two regional theatres (Russian and Ukrainian) in one – Lugansk Regional Drama Theatre, with two teams – Russian and Ukrainian.

In the fall of 1963 P. Vetrov comes back to the theatre.  A. Kozhenovsky, E. Pozdniakova, E. Vetrova. D. Vitchenko, S. Sirotiuk, A. Dmitrieva, N. Zaika return with him. A. Khrunitchev and T. Klenova followed. P. Klenov, who used to work in Rostov and Mariupol – very talented addition. This comeback was welcomed by the theatre team and by the community. The actors missed the wholehearted approach of Vetrov, they needed his nicety very much. P. Vetrov creates strong team yet again. This team was working non-stop to show the salubrious strength of art…

This time forever, P. Vetrov left the theatre. Theatre was left with the team, raised by Vetrov:  А. Kozhenovsky, F. Maksimovsky, E. Pozdniakova, V. Turin, A. Yatsenko, L. Sinelnikova, N. Raschupkin, A. Sakharov, N. Soya. One could already hear the voices of the duet singing youth – D. Vitchenkio, S. Sirotiuk. D. Vitchenko was at his best – with his Sergei Petrov from «Spite all deaths» by V. Titov and K. Milenko.

First, yet noticeable steps, in crowds, small parts were taken by V. Muzyka. On a pamphlet for “The Snow Queen” a quote from Vetrov was written about him: “First a crow, then you will fly like an eagle in your art”.

Plays like “Lort of the Stone” and «Bourgeois» permanently established V. Timoshyn as a Director in Lugansk theatre. This was a very memorable time for the theatre. Two teams were finally divided, based on the decree issued by the Ministry of Culture of the Ukrainian Soviet Republic of October 23, 1970. The theatre was renamed into “Lugansk Regional Theatre of Music and Drama: with Ukrainian and Russian teams”. This enabled freedom and mobility for both teams.

Theatre, to the best of its ability was trying to overcome the limitations of stagnation and create a more demanding and carefully selected repertoire. The desire to talk about and discuss life, person, it required a larger scale of dramaturgy, including artistic generalizations, as well as unique depictions of narrow emotions and passions. After going on a tour to Moscow it became obvious that V. Timoshyn joined the theatre with his own esthetic program.  He was incredibly respectful to all the work and input of his predecessor, but let the theatre forward.

V. Timoshyn took  the direction of making the team younger. He invited a group of actors from different educational institutions. They were immediately involved in plays. Some  of those people were T. Shynakova,  I. Sirotinskaya, E. Koval, Y. Granko.  They knew that they were joining a team, where strict laconic form of operation was in place, and not at all the Director’s desires. This strict laconic form, striving to deeply present the philosophic understanding of the essence of the play. There were people from whom to learn.

The repertoire was substantially improved partially because of staging the Russian classics, such as Ostrovsky. Just as it was before, Lugansk viewers the theatre of Ostrovsky – theatre of deep thought, societal conflicts, complex social personalities.  Two plays «Lover Boy» и «Heart is not a Stone» staged by V. Timoshyn, and the third — «Foster child» — by A. Kozhenovsky.

Youth was taking over the theatre, because the new Director Timoshyn joined the theatre with his own clear vision of the world, his understanding of new tendencies in contemporary art. He had to give work to the entire team, give them the opportunity to see plays by touring theatres, work with directors of different schools, including foreign theatre schools. On his own, Timoshyn stages «The death of the squadron» in Boyan Danovsky Theatre (Pernik, Bulgaria), including the team from Bulgaria and creative director I. Venkov and Art Director L. Petrvo, stage “The Vampire” in Lugansk.

In April 2012 Lugansk Academic Russian Drama Theatre will host Pavel Luspekaev Festival.


Jump Pro

Horse is one of the first domesticated animals in the world. These gracious creatures with such big and smart eyes always followed people and were a reliable partner for them in everyday life. Progress is giving less room for the horses, replacing the carriages with cars, plows with tractors, and even horses themselves replaced by other means of transportation.

Now people keep horses for sports and leisure. Not everybody knows that the term hippotherapy exists. It means treatment or healing with the help of horses. This mean is used to heal people with movement problems and with emotional instabilities. Treatment takes place under the supervision of hippotherapy and specially trained instructor.

 I was lucky to visit sports stables in the suburbs of Lugansk - "Jump Pro". This excursion set all my mundane worries and troubles somewhere very far away. Hippotherapist did not accompany us, but this kind of specialist is present at the stables. It is Natalia Kleikova. Natalia is also the riding master), but trust me - the therapy was a success.

 I formed an impression that the stables «Jump Pro» are one big family. Professionals take care of the horses. And care is not just water and food, as horse is like a person, is a very emotional creature. One keeper, one horse, one character.

 Jack Russell terrier - happy and loyal dog Barny is keeping everyone at the stables safe, as well as his friend, a much more serious and solid German Sheppard Pythagor. Night hunter Larson.

 The horse stable has its own sports talents - Alyona Zhdaniuk (master of sports) and Karina Shablo (very promising young athlete).

 The ladies not only practice, but also take care of the horses at the stables, trying to find approach to everyone there.

 I personally was very pleased with my communication with the horses and had only positive emotions and a feeling of limitless happiness. It was that simple - one hour of endless joy and happiness from simply observing and touching these amazing animals.

 Here's a short video extract for you to enjoy. mfin





Ukrainian President's Cup. Riding competition. Finals 2011

The Finals of the Ukrainian President's Cup took place on the Zhashkov stud-farm. The main prize fund was over 200,000 UAH. Gregory Roben, of Zhashkov stud-farm received the gran-prize.
"Jump Pro" stable from Luhansk region (Teplichne) participated in the finals.
Alyona Zhdanyuk represented the stable on Libero, Ukrainian chestnut gelded horse, born in 2006. The athlete was in the middle of technical protocols. Mikhail Pilipenko of Kyiv on the Crossman, grey Mecklenburg gelded horse, got the 6th prize in the Joker contest, with the barrier's hight os 135 cm. This was the ending of a four month competition for Crossman and he returned home, to his dear "Jump Pro" stable.

Luhansk "Avangard" Stadium - new lighting for the field


Luhansk "Avangard" Stadium - new lighting for the field.

Thanks to all the efforts of the management of the "Zorya" team, after the major reconstruction of the main football field of "Avangard" stadium, new projectors montage is also finished. In order to install the projectors lighting matches were conducted in advance. Every match had 48 projectors, which in total comes up to not less than 1,200 lux, which is exactly what Ukrainian standard needs. After electronic montage work in order to connect the lighting to the power point is over, the testing use of the new lighting is scheduled. The power, that "Avangard" now has is enough to use it in the spring for the home games, and they can begin after dawn. 
Now, all the fans wait for the heating problem of the stadium to be resolved. As the electricity supply, available for the stadium is not enough, so the generators will be used to provide the heat. The field's heating system will be connected to the generator, that is already at the stadium. We were not able to find out what kind of generators are those, but maybe they are the ones used in South Africa, during the World Cup?

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