Moscow Events 2017

Journey to Christmas Festival

12 December 2016 - 11 January 2017

Journey to Christmas Festival Moscow will become the ground for a great winter fest. The city's government worked a lot to dress streets and avenues nicely in light garlands and 3D installations. The Christmas fairy-tale kicks off on Red Square and takes over Nikolskaya Street, Stoleshnikov Lane, Maroseyka Street, the Arbat and many other streets of Moscow. Guests will be greeted by Father Frost, Snow Maiden and Nutcracker; Christmas shops are to be found all around the downtown. The Europe's largest ice-skating rink opens up at the VDNKh park; you also may go skating in the Gorky Park and right on Red Square.

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Russian Orthodox Christmas

7 January 2017

Russian Orthodox Christmas According to the Julian calendar, the Russian Christmas falls on 7 January and is probably the most beloved celebration for Russian Christians. That day baby Jesus is glorified in 30 thousand churches around the world. In Moscow the main Midnight Mass is held by the Russian Patriarch Kirill in the astonishingly beautiful Christ the Saviour Cathedral and annually crowded with over 5 thousand Muscovites including the prime-minister and other top officials. The Mass usually starts about 11 pm and may last for up to 3 am but it is better to contact a particular church for the schedule.

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Maslenitsa Pancake Week

20 February - 26 February 2017

Maslenitsa Pancake Week Maslenitsa is a blend of pagan beliefs and Christian traditions and is the Russian equivalent of Mardi Gras - the last period for feasting before the fasting of the traditional Lent season. Blini are a type of Russian pancake which is eaten smothered in jam, sour cream, honey or other sweet foodstuffs. Maslenitsa lasts for up to one week ending on Shrove Tuesday or 'Blini Day'. Many Muscovites enjoy blini and medovukha honey wine in numerous chalet-tents set up all around the city centre. These days you may happen to become a spectator or even participant of a folk show staged right on a street.

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Women's Day

8 March 2017

Women's Day International Women's Day (IWD) is an internationally recognised celebration of women and their social, economic and political achievements. In Russia, the demonstrations that marked International Women's Day created a sea of change that kick-started the Russian Revolution of 1917. To commemorate the day's historic importance it is now a public holiday in Russia. However, rather than staging political protests the day has a more sentimental slant, with husbands and sons showing their love for the ladies in their lives.

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Moscow Fashion Week

21 March - 26 March 2017

Moscow Fashion Week Following in the vein of Fashion Week London, Pairs, Milan and New York, Fashion Week Moscow is a growing draw for fashionista the world over, with over fifty fashion houses showcasing their productions to nearly 100 000 guests bi-annually. The ethos on the Moscow event is to promote the fashion industry in Russia and has made big names of Igor Chapurin, Andrew Sharov and Tatiana Parfenova. The festival is expected to take place at the Gostiny Dvor other venues around Moscow.

Website: mfw.ruopen in new window

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Golden Mask Russian Performing Arts Festival

31 March - 4 April 2017

Golden Mask This is Moscow's most prestigious drama, ballet and opera festival showcasing the most significant Russian premiers to come out of the previous year. All genres of the theatre arts are catered for, from puppetry to high end drama. The festival incorporates the National Theatre Awards which since their launch in 1993 have now become the country's most prestigious theatre awards. In 2016 the Golden Mask Festival will be held for the 22d time.

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Moscow Easter Fest

1 May 2017

Moscow Easter Fest Moscow Easter festivities generously vary from street performances of parish choirs and ethno folk groups to a highly reputable musical event under maestro Gergiev's direction assembling some of the world's elite musicians to perform in best Moscow concert halls. Muscovites and the city's guests may also join street master-classes in painting Easter eggs and baking Easter cakes. This year Russian Paskha falls on May 1. Midnight services are very solemn and crowded; next morning people greet each other saying "Christ is risen!" and replying "Truly risen!". After 40-day Lenten fast, they break it by sharing a kulich cake with family and friends.

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Labour Day

1 May 2017

Labour Day The Soviet Russia celebrated May 1st as a day of working people while people themselves saw in it a good occasion to go out and spend a nice spring day all together walking and singing on the streets. They usually started the day marching across Red Square with flags and banners displaying a slogan "Peace, Labour, May". Now political parties launch their separate actions. The most noticeable is that of Communists who traditionally march from the Lenin's monument on Kaluzhskaya Square to the Karl Marx place in front of the Bolshoi. Last year Russian authourities staged a parade on Red Square for the first time since the USSR's collapse; its obvious purpose was to encourage people to support a recent unification with Crimea.

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Victory Day

9 May 2017

Victory Day On May 9th we celebrate Victory Day to commemorate the defeat of Nazi Germany in the WWII. Moscow celebrations schedule is usually busy: memorial events in Poklonnaya Hill and Alexander Garden, retro dance party in the Hemitage Garden, meeting of veterans in Teatralnaya Square, military orchestras in city parks and so on. Certainly, military parade on Red Square is a highlight. As admittance to the parade is very limited people crowd the neighboring Tverskaya Street to watch tanks and jets on the way to the square. Don't miss fireworks at 10 pm!

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Chekhov International Theater Festival

24 May - 20 July 2017

Chekhov Festival The Moscow Theater Festival named after playwright Anton Chekhov was held first in 1992 and since then became a significant event in the life of the world's theater. It brings together artists from all over the world serving a space for exchanging ideas and experiences. This year Moscow will host companies from France, Japan, Argentina, China, Germany, Taiwan, Great Britain, South Africa, Spain, Italy.

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Day of Slavic Writing and Culture

24 May 2017

Day of Slavic Writing That day Russia glorifies two saint brothers Cyril and Methodius, Christian missionaries from Greece, who invented Cyrillic alphabet in the 9th century. Moscow will run many local events but the main venue is Red Square. In the morning Patriarch Kirill will conduct a public prayer in front of the St. Basil's; and a concert will follow it about 12.00 (usually free entrance). The concert gives us a rare chance to listen to Russian classics and Soviet time hits performed by popular singers and an amazing united choir of 2000 professionals, adults and children both.

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Children's Day

1 June 2017

Children's Day International Day for Protection of Children is celebrated all around the world, and our city is not exception to the rule. Plenty of amusements will be arranged for kids and parents, and best places to visit will be parks and public gardens. The Hermitage Garden traditionally hosts a family fest with many artists to participate; Sokolniki Park may invite guests for an ice-cream party; Muzeon park treats children with quests and quizs. Izmaylovo Kremlin, Kolomenskoye estate are also good places to be visited that day. Many museums offer special programs for kids and open for free that day.

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Russia's Independence Day

12 June 2017

Russia's Independence Day Russia declared its sovereignty on 12 June 1990 as a way of distancing itself from the crumbling Soviet Union. The following year Boris Yeltsin came to power and declared 12 June Russian Independence Day and a national holiday. But it was not until over a decade later in 2003 under the presidency of Vladimir Putin that the day became an event. Now each year on 12 June there is a parade and then a great concert at Red Square arranged by the government, while the opposition runs anti-governmental actions in the Sakharov avenue, Bolotnaya Square, Triumphal Square and other places. Police presence is overwhelming.

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FIFA Confederations Cup

17 June - 2 July 2017

FIFA Confederations Cup In 2017 Russia will host the 10th FIFA Confederations Cup, as a prelude to the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The matches will be played in four different stadiums across four cities: Saint Petersburg, Moscow, Kazan, and Sochi. Moscow's main venue will be the Otkrytiye Arena (Spartak stadium) that will host the third place match on 2 July. For the tournament were qualified teams from Germany, Australia, Chile, Mexico, New Zealand, Portugal, 2017 Africa Cup of Nations winners and Russia.

Website: welcome2018.comopen in new window

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High School Prom Day

(to be confirmed): between 19 June and 24 June 2017

High School Prom Day On May 24 or 25 Russian school graduates bid their teachers farewell at the Last Bell ceremony marking the final day of classes. After the ceremony they flood favourite stomping grounds like Gorky Park and Sparrow Hills, and you may see thousands of them bearing red-colored sashes. But magnificent graduation parties come at the end of June, after all the exams are over. Prom day is celebrated citywide, and Red Square, of course, is the main venue. Parties are arranged at night clubs, city palaces, restaurants and on river cruise boats. Many hire limos to make a funny ride around the town.

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Moscow International Film Festival

22 June - 29 June 2017

Film Festival The MIFF is among the oldest in the world. For the first time it was held in 1935 and the jury was headed by great Sergei Eisenshtein. Now the jury is presided by film director Nikita Mikhalkov. Among the MIFF prize winners were Akira Kurosawa and Stanley Kramer, Federico Fellini and Andrzej Wajda, Krzysztof Zanussi and Sergei Gerasimov. The MIFF paved the way for filmmakers who later became known throughout the world like Istvan Szabo, Kaneto Shindo, Krzysztof Kieslowski, Aki Kaurismaki. The main prize of the festival is a statuette of St. George, patron saint of Moscow.

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Moscow City Racing

(to be confirmed): middle July 2017

Moscow City Racing Formula One teams will race around the Kremlin with top drivers taking to the streets for Moscow City Racing. The event starts at Bolotnaya Ploshchad and follows the southern wall of the Kremlin along Kremlyovskaya Naberezhnaya to Bolshoi Kamenny Bridge. The track is about 4500 m long. Names of participants are still kept in secret. Spectators traditionally see nearly a hundred of cars.

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Moscow Jam Fest

middle August 2017

Moscow Jam Fest The Jam Fest marks the start of a harvest time in middle Russia. Hundreds of chalet-tents will be set in the city to treat residents and guests with all sorts of traditional and exotic jams, for example, made of zucchini or cactus. There are also workshops on making jams and desserts and many other activities including even sand sculpture and dance lessons. The festival will cover the entire city center taking place on the Arbat, Revolution Square, the Krymskaya Embankment, Tverskaya and Manezhnaya Square. The fest traditionally culminates in a huge open-air concert; last year among the invited stars were Akon and Craig David.

Website: mosvarenie.ruopen in new window

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Moscow Gastronomic Fest

(to be confirmed): August - September 2017

Gastronomic Fest Moscow seems to be a kind of gourmet city. There are dozens of food fests to be held annually and time to time: Moscow Gourmet, Taste of Health, Slow Food, Street Food and many others. End of summer usually brings us an opportunity to get more acquainted with food traditions of different regions of Russia. You are able to buy or just try any of delicacies produced throughout the country and some foreign food as well. Chief's master classes, tastings and samplings are all to please spoilt Muscovites and our dear guests.

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Moscow City Days

26 August - 3 September 2017

Moscow City Days On the first weekend in September we celebrate the birth of the Russian capital. In 2016 Moscow will mark its 869 anniversary by many worth seeing events including open air concerts, sports contests and laser shows; and there will be plenty of food and drink stalls lining the streets. The city parks are also popular places to celebrate the occasion with many families choosing to enjoy a picnic. I suggest to use the subway to move around as many streets will be closed for traffic these days. Don't miss the time to book for a grand military bands festival Spasskaya Tower on Red Square! Best places to watch fireworks are Pathriarshy Bridge, Krymsky Bridge, Sparrow Hills.

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Spasskaya Tower Tattoo

26 August - 3 September 2017

Spasskaya Tower Tattoo The Spasskaya Tower Tattoo is an annual music fiesta, staged right in Red Square, and a great "battlefield" of the bands from all over the world! It is indeed a stunning combination of military band parades and dance shows, laser and pyrotechnic effects. Military, classical, folk and popular music is mixed up as musicians are absolutely free in choosing the repertoire. The festival is usually held within the framework of Moscow City Days. Each show is usually ended up with a firework just above the St. Basil's domes. It is an open air venue so get warmed up if weather forecast is not encouraging.

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Circle of Light Festival

(to be confirmed): October 2017

Circle of Light Festival The Moscow International Festival "Circle of light" celebrates the growing possibilies of modern lighting technologies. For our guests it's a chance to gain a sight of numerous light installations, breathtaking laser shows and videomappings. Many Moscow landmarks will participate in the action. Traditional venues are the Bolshoi, Manezhnaya Square, the Kuznetskiy Most street, the VDNKh park and Ostankino Pond, Tsarytsyno Palace. The Digital October Center usually hosts professional educational program including master-classes, show-cases and workshops. Check out the events calendar.

Website: lightfest.ru/en/open in new window

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XIX World Festival of Youth and Students

14-22 October 2017

Festival of Youth and Students Young people from all around the world will come to Russia to participate in the Festival running since 1947. Moscow hosted the Festival in 1957 and 1985; this year only parade of the delegations will be held in the capital on October 14th while main activities will take place in Sochi. Thirty thousand participants are expected to come from 150 countries to attend the event!

Website: russia2017.comopen in new window

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Kremlin Cup

14 October - 22 October 2017

Kremlin Cup Russia's answer to Wimbledon captures the city's attention for nine days in October. Was the first International Professional Tennis Tournament in Russia founded in 1990. In its 25 year history, the tournament has established itself as an integral part of the ATP World Tour and treated passionate Russian fans to some of the best tennis the world has to offer. Muscovites have witnessed great players claim its title, including Yevgeny Kafelnikov, Goran Ivanisevic, Nikolay Davydenko, Mikhail Youzhny and Richard Gasquet. The competition will take place at the Olympic Stadium.

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Day of National Unity

4 November 2017

Day of National Unity The day commemorates the expulsion of Polish-Lithuanian invaders from Moscow in November 1612. Actually Russian authorities just recently proclaimed it a national holiday so that to replace the Communist Revolution celebration with it. Alternative name for a newly established holiday was the Day of Accord and Reconciliation. In fact, many Russians don't celebrate it at all while some opposition supporters use the opportunity to stage street rallies including those known as "Russian Marches" by Russian nationalists.

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Russian Revolution Day

7 November 2017

Russian Revolution Day Post-Soviet Russia no longer celebrates anniversary of the 1917 Revolution as a national holiday. But this year will mark 100th anniversary and this is a good moment for looking back on the causes and the results of the most important event in Russia's XX century history. Official preparations for the celebration has already started on Vladimir Putin's decree and we all are curious to see which activities will be choosen to reflect the revolution as a great event and a terrible tragedy the same time. That day are to be revealed time capsules created for future Communists during the USSR period and preserved in several places around the country.

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