Lviv Personality

Legendary Leopolitans No. 9: Ukraine’s greatest heroine Roxelana

Issue 32, February 2011.
Who is the most famous Ukrainian woman of all time? In the modern era that honour would be contested by political icon Yulia Tymoshenko, Eurovision star Ruslana and Olympic champion Lilya Podkopayeva, while through the mists of time historical figures like the canonized Princess Olga and fin de siecle authoress Lesya Ukrainka loom particularly large. However, none of these figures can hope to compete with the sensational story of Roxelana, the sixteenth Ukrainian country girl who was cast into the hell of chattel slavery only to rise to a position of unrivalled authority in the world’s most powerful empire.

“Leopolitan ladies are better dressed than Parisian girls!” Interview: Japanese fashion icon Kenzo Takada enjoys his first taste of Leopolitan style

Issue 29, November 2010.
The guest of honour at the sixth season of Lviv Fashion Week (LFW) shows was celebrated Japanese designer Kenzo Takada. The seventy one year old founder of the Kenzo fashion house was paying his first ever visit to Ukraine and was clearly impressed by his first experience of the Lviv high society scene – enthusing over everything from the quality of the collections on display to the elegance of the city’s ladies and the beauty of its architecture. Kenzo is the biggest name yet to guest star at LFW and his appearance illustrates the growing prestige of this relatively new regional fashion initiative. Within the space of the past three years, LFW has become a fixture on the local high society calendar and has succeeded in establishing itself as a credible regional alternative to the traditional Ukrainian Fashion Week shows in Kyiv.

Legendary Leopolitans No. 8: The borderland virtuoso of the viola

Issue 28, October 2010.
Adopted Lviv native Yuri Bashmet is one of the most respected international violists in the world today. Like so many talented instrumentalists of his generation, he has also branched and founded an orchestra which he conducts. He has never abandoned the viola, managing to split his time in even portions between soloist and conductor, often appearing in both roles in the same concert. He has performed with the world’s leading orchestras, including those in Moscow, Berlin, Paris, New York, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, and many other locales.

Legendary Leopolitans No. 7: Islamic thinker from Europe’s religious crossroads

Issue 26, July 2010.
Muhammad Asad’s name figures prominently on the roll of 20th century English-language Muslim thinkers. He is a remarkable and unlikely figure whose association with Lviv reflects the city’s heritage as one of the world’s great crossroads of cultures and religions.

Legendary Leopolitans No. 6: The ultimate vodka dynasty

Issue 25, June 2010.
At the beginning of the 20th century Lviv was perhaps best known to the outside world as the home of the famous Baczewski vodka family which exported its celebrated beverages around the world and won the admiration of kings and emperors during an era when Lviv was the eastern outpost of Europe’s great dynastic empires.

Legendary Leopolitans No. 5: Mozart’s forgotten son

Issue 24, May 2010.
Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart (26 July 1791 – 29 July 1844), also known as F. X. Mozart or simply Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Jr., was the youngest child of six born to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and his wife Constanze. He was spend much of life in the shadow of his father’s greatness while making a major contribution to the growth of musical education in 19th century Habsburg Lviv
Stanislaw  Lem

Legendary Leopolitans No. 4: Polish spaceman Stanislaw Lem

Issue 23, April 2010.
Lviv’s colourful cosmopolitanism has often made the city a place where new ideas have taken flight with particular ease and buoyancy, but few Lviv natives have been as imaginative or entertaining in their innovation as Stanislaw Lem, the man widely acknowledged as the greatest science fiction writer of the Soviet Bloc, if not the entire world. Guests of Kult can explore an entire world of Legendary Leopolitans whose pop art.

Legendary Leopolitans No. 3: Extraordinary actor Bohdan Stupka

Issue 22, March 2010.
On stage and on the nation’s screens Bohdan Stupka has displayed the courage of Genghis Khan, the wit of Goethe’s Faust and the leadership of legendary Ukrainian Cossack leader and namesake Bohdan Khmelnitskiy. Today he is simply known as the greatest living Ukrainian actor, and despite already being in the twilight years of an illustrious career, he remains very much a dominating presence throughout Ukrainian theatre and TV, appearing regularly in the historical roles for which he is best known and in the theatrical dramas which first aroused his flair for acting.

Lviv Philharmonic Returns to Grandeur

Issue 22, March 2010.
Volodymyr Syvohip (inset) has been in charge of Lviv’s Philharmonic Society Theatre since 2006 and has recently overseen extensive renovation of the venue as part of his ambitious plans to help one of the great Lviv venues recapture its former glory. He remains best known to many in Lviv cultural circles as the man behind Lviv’s popular annual ‘Contrasts’ contemporary music festival. Volodymyr is celebrated as one of the most active figures on the Lviv cultural scene and currently splits his time between conducting the Lviv-based ‘Gloria’ chamber choir and working to bring his beloved Philharmonic up to a standard deserving of this venerable Lviv venue.

Legendary Leopolitans # 2: Opera diva Solomiya Krushelnitska

Issue 21, February 2010.
At the turn of the 20th century the art of opera was enjoying the period of its greatest ascendancy as the pomp and circumstance of the late imperial age boosted coffers at the world’s most famous Opera Houses. A mere handful of male singers led by Enrico Caruso dominated the headlines at the time and were among the first truly global super stars. They were joined by a young lady from rural West Ukraine who would go on to become one of the most celebrated voices in the history of opera.