Ninth PRO Science event on 12th September was dedicated to anniversaries of Leo Tolstoy and Gavriil Derzhavin.
Attendants were greeted in the Emperor Ballroom by the Minister of Education and Science of Tatarstan Rafis Burganov and Rector Ilshat Gafurov. In his interview to the press later, Rector Gafurov noted that this is not the last event during Tolstoy Year at KFU, and the year itself extends to 2019. A monument to the world-famous KFU student will be installed at the Leo Tolstoy Institute of Philology and Intercultural Communication. Tolstoy Medal and Prize are also expected to be given away soon.
One of the honored guests of the PRO Science this time was Andrew Kotchubey, Tolstoy's indirect descendant who currently resides in the United States and is the Vice-Chairman of Tolstoy Foundation in New York. He spoke about his great-great-grandfather Sergey Volskonsky who served as the prototype for Labazov in The Decembrists, an unfinished novel by Tolstoy. Another lecture was presented by Galina Alekseeva, Head of the Department of Research at Yasnaya Polyana Museum Complex, President of the International Committee for Literary Museums.
Mr. Kotchubey was impressed by the University, “It's an incredibly beautiful place. Very clean! Everything that I've heard about Kazan University is indeed true – and even better. Everything is top-notch. I only regret about not having had the chance to be here when I was a student and a researcher.” He emphasized that he is not Tolstoy's direct descendant but knows many of those.
The event itself was arranged in the Main Building. Outside the Emperor Ballroom was a small exhibition titled “The ever-changing faces of happiness” which represents Tolstoy's and his characters' views on this matter. Visitors were encouraged to leave their opinions.
A master class in classical dance was arranged in the History Museum.
Several lectures were organized which told about why Tolstoy wasn't awarded the Nobel Prize, how he liked to spend leisure time in his youth, and which of TV and cinema adaptations of his works are considered the best. As usual, trivia contests and small thematic installations were present, as well as several live paintings recreating Tolstoy's life and endeavors.
As was revealed the next morning, over 2,000 Kazanites arrive to partake in the PRO Science, signifying another success for the series.
Source text: Kristina Ivanova
Translation: Yury Nurmeev