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Russian culture minister supports idea of moving New Wave music contest from Latvia

December 06, 2014, 2:04 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, December 5. /TASS/. Russia’s Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky said on Friday he supported the idea of moving the New Wave popular music contest out of Latvia’s seaside resort of Jurmala to Russia.

“I met with Igor Krutoi (Russian composer and founder of the New Wave contest) to discuss our plans. A lot od cities in Russia will be glad to host this contest, and at a much higher quality level,” he told journalists, adding that among the most probable contenders are the Black Sea resort city of Sochi, Russia’s westernmost city of Kaliningrad on the Baltic Sea, and Kazan, the capital of Russia’s republic of Tatarstan.

“They offer perfect conditions in terms of infrastructure, concert halls, accommodations,” Medinsky said. In his words, St. Petersburg, the second largest city in Russia, was not among the contenders to host the New Wave, since it “is saturated with contests of various sorts.”

The New Wave contest, an annual televised event modelled on Eurovision and held in the town Jurmala since 2002, has been drawing fans and competitors from across the countries of the former Soviet Union but it has become increasingly contentious in recent years.

This year, tensions came in July, when Latvia’s Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics denied entry to three Russian singers Oleg Gazmanov, Joseph Kobzon and Alla Perfilova, broadly known in Russia as Valeriya. The denial came just days before they were scheduled to perform at the event.

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