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Moscow’s Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center celebrate their first anniversary

November 17, 2013, 7:10 UTC+3 MOSCOW
They have turned into one of the most popular cultural sites in Moscow over the past 12 months
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MOSCOW, November 17, 7:02 /ITAR-TASS/. Moscow’s Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center will mark their first anniversary on Sunday. They have turned into one of the most popular cultural sites in Moscow over the past 12 months.

‘We did not expect such a success,” Borukh Gorin, the chairman of the museum’s governing board, told Itar-Tass.

This Sunday, the entrance is going to be free. The museum staff has prepared a special festive program for the visitors. It will include an exhibition of photos by Emmanuil Yevrazikhin, a classic of Soviet photography, who took photos of religious services held at the Moscow choral synagogue in the 1950s-1960s.

Architect Ralph Appelbaum, the head of the RAA (Ralph Appelbaum Associates) bureau, the author of the museum’s project, will tell about the history of the concept and creation of the Jewish Museum and the Tolerance Center.

The museum’s director Alexander Boroda, Viktor Vekselberg, the head of the museum’s supervisory council, and Mikhail Shvydkoi, the president’s special envoy for international cultural cooperation, will review the results of the museum’s first year of work at a news conference on November 18.

According to the museum staff, more than 100,000 people have visited it over the past 12 months. “It’s a very big number for any museum of this kind. It will take 20 hours to see all the exhibits, including films, slides and photos on the screen and on iPADs,” Borukh Gorin went on to say. The Jewish museum offers about 30 various excursions.

“Today, the Jewish museum, according to the museum community, has become the technological flagman of Russia. It has no matches in Russia and even in Europe,” Gorin went on to say.

According to him, the Jewish Museum is unique not so much because of its Jewish content but the way of presentation of information and its museum exposition.

The Jewish Museum and the Tolerance Center are two different projects.

“Russia does not have a methodology of teaching tolerance. That makes the center’s role very important. School teachers and institutions of high learning professors show great interest in our activities,” Gorin emphasized.

Anna Makarchuk, the Tolerance Center’s program director, told Itar-Tass that the center offered an interactive and educational floor for a dialogue. “This is a space for direct and positive dialogue of people of various cultures, religions and outlooks,” she said.

According to her, more than a thousand schoolchildren, about 500 students and 100 teachers visit the Tolerance Center every month.

The Jewish Museum and the Tolerance Center were opened in 2012. In February 2013, it was decided to create similar Tolerance centers in 11 Russian cities.

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