Belarusian musicians campaign against the death penalty

2013 2013-10-08T23:06:47+0300 2013-10-08T23:06:47+0300 en

Belarusian musicians joined together in the project "Last Dawn", dedicated to the struggle for the abolition of the death penalty in the country.

Belarus is the last country in Europe in which an offender can be sentenced to death.

"Life imprisonment in the case of a particularly serious crime would be more appropriate punishment," said Liavon Volski. "Art is one of the highest manifestations of human nature, and the death penalty is one of the lowest," explains his position Dzmitry Vaitsiushkevich.

Joint projects are a good tradition of Belarusian musicians. Some of them have become historical events in the national culture, including the legendary “Narodny Albom” ("Folk Album") and “Ya Naradziusia Tut” (" I Was Born Here").

The current project was organized by the members of the Human Rights Center “Viasna”and timed to the World Day against the Death Penalty, which is celebrated annually on 10 October.

"I wanted to have the greatest possible number of people know this information and watch the concert. However, the situation in our country prevents us from gathering stadiums or “Minsk-Arena”. Many of the performers are in the “black lists” in Belarus and have no opportunity to perform officially,” explains the coordinator of the campaign “Human Rights Defenders against the Death Penalty” Andrei Paluda.

That's why it was decided to organize the recording of the project in the Bialystok Philharmonic. No tickets were sold adfor the concert, that's why there were few spectators. However, the event was broadcast by a dozen of websites, including “Nasha Niva”.

Each of the seven performers sang about a particular kind of the death penalty.

For example, Liavon Volski's song was about crucifixion, Hanna Khitryk's – about the guillotine, Dzmitry Vaitsiushkevich's – about the gallows. Apart from them, songs were sang by Aliaksandr Pamidorau, Nasta Shpakouskaya (Naka), Ales Dzianisau (Liudzi na Balotse) and Viktar Rudenka, known for the projecs Rostany and Dali.

Meanwhile, another event was held near the stage – an artist drew sand pictures at a special table. The received images were broadcast online on a big screen.

This unusual form of art was shown to the audience throughout the concert – more than an hour. A recording of the concert "The Last Dawn" will be distributed on DVD-disks. On 10 October, the day of the World Day against the Death Penalty, the broadcast of the concert will be repeated.