Rally in support of freedom of art and against censorship held in Novosibirsk

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The rally in support of freedom of art was held in Novosibirsk on April 5

The protesters demanded the resignation of the Minister of Culture due to the controversies surrounding the "Tannhauser" opera

The rally against church radicalism and in support of the freedom of artistic expression was held on Lenin Square at the Opera and Ballet Theatre in Novosibirsk on Sunday, reports "Interfax". According to the representatives of the city administration, the rally was attended by about 2.5 thd. people.

The participants of the rally adopted a resolution which, in particular, demanded that the leadership of the country should guarantee the right to freedom of conscience, as well as clarify the wording of Article 148 of the Criminal Code on insulting religious feelings of a believer. "We demand the resignation of the Minister of Culture Medinsky and that of Kekhman (the new theater director Vladimir Kekhman – ed.). We demand that "Tannhauser" be staged again, states the resolution.

The video message of the film director Andrey Zvyagintsev on the freedom of artistic expression was broadcast during the rally. "An artist should speak plain language - the language of truth, and the spectator should be able to hear it," said the film director.

Addressing the protesters, senior deacon Andrey Kurayev, in his turn, called for them to be tolerant. "Do not let anybody force you into "for" or "against." The man should look toward the eternity."

Previously, the orthodox activists conducted a few campaigns against the staging of the opera "Tannhauser" by Richard Wagner, including two rallies, which were attended by 4 thd. people, and a picket at the Opera House on the day of the show.

Text and pictures by INTERFAX.RU