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Outreach Programs

Outreach/School Programs: Russian Folk Art

Outreach programs create opportunities for students to gain an understanding of the artistic and cultural significance of Russian traditional arts. The outreach programs bring our educator into schools to address different aspects of traditional Russian folk art. Outreach/school programs are discussion-based, interactive and led by experienced educators. Programs relate to the New York State Learning Standards for Social Studies and Art.

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I. Russian Folk Art Revealed  

The program is set-up as a lecture, demonstration and hands-on activities.  The presenter introduces the audience to the history of Russian Folk Art. Folk art is a word very much like culture; it represents a tremendous spectrum of human expression.  Russian folk art is a widow to learning about Russian art and culture.

A wide range of demonstrations of Russian museum quality objects of Russian folk art include miniature painting on papier-mâché, nesting dolls, painted boxes and trays (portraits, landscapes and genre scenes), textiles (costumes, quilts and needlework), ceramics and other crafts.  

Hands-on activities.  The presentations are conducted in a participatory mode. They provide participants with the opportunity to interact with each other through activities such as assembling and disassembling sets of “Matryoshka” nesting dolls, to dress up in traditional Russian costumes and take photos.  The costumes are available in different sizes. 

II. Sight and Sound of Traditional Russian Music. 

The program demonstrates and promotes the art of Russian folk music, with the emphasis on education, giving students the rare opportunity to learn about Russian traditional instruments and discussing various aspects of this art form. 

Russia has a long tradition of folk music. The educator introduces the history of Russian Strings (Balalaika, Gusli), and Russian Winds (Svirel, Rozhok, Zhaleika Dudochka) and bayan (button accordion).  During the presentations students will be given information about history and characteristics of these instruments and actually a chance to play the instruments.

 The program will give students opportunity to utilize skills and knowledge they might already possess (from playing another musical instrument or singing a folk song to knowing some facts about history and geography of Russia) and provide enough information and excitement to ignite their interest and enthusiasm to further develop their skills and secure a long-term effect leading to better cross-cultural understanding through uniting nature of music.

III.  Folk Arts Workshop: An introduction to Traditional Russian Folk Art Painting. 

The program offers opportunities to learn the step-by-step techniques of Russian Miniature Art painting; such as Paint Your Own Nesting Doll on the blank sanded forms of the dolls. This folk art workshop includes an introductory demonstration and a hands-on session. The instructor demonstrates basic skills of painting and teaches the “double brush” technique of traditional Russian painting.

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