Dear compatriots, distinguished guests!
Esteemed participants of the festival!
Ladies and gentlemen!
I am pleased to welcome you on the blessed land of Uzbekistan, in the ancient and majestic Samarkand, rightly dubbed around the world as the ornament on the face of the Earth. I cordially congratulate all of you on the opening ceremony of the 12th Sharq Taronalari International Music Festival.
We have been holding this festival for twenty-two years now, under the auspices of UNESCO. Let me express my deep gratitude to the Director-General of this organization, Mrs. Audrey Azoulay, for her personal participation in today’s event, which affords it a special significance.
I also express my sincere gratitude to the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Commonwealth of Independent States, Sergey Lebedev, Advisor to the President of the Russian Federation for Culture Vladimir Tolstoy, Minister of Culture and Sports of the Republic of Kazakhstan Aktota Raimkulova, Minister of Culture, Information and Tourism of the Kyrgyz Republic Azamat Zhamankulov, Minister of Culture of the Republic of Tajikistan Shamsiddin Orumbekzoda, Minister of Culture of Turkmenistan Atageldi Shamuradov, State Minister for Cultural Affairs of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh K.M. Khalid, Minister of Home and Cultural Affairs of the Kingdom of Bhutan Sherub Gyeltshen, Deputy Minister of Culture and National Heritage of the Republic of Poland Pawel Lewandowski, Member of the House of Lords of the United KIngdom Mohammed Iltaf Sheikh, Senator of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus Yekaterina Dulova, Mayor of the Japanese city of Nara Motonobu Nakagawa, Mayor of Andong (Republic of Korea) Kwon Yong-Se, Chairman of the Lal Bahadur Shastri Institute, President of the India-Uzbek Friendship Society Anil Shastri, ambassadors of foreign countries and representatives of international organizations in Uzbekistan, media workers who came to our country to widely cover the festival.
We wholeheartedly welcome 340 well-known cultural figures participating in our forum from 75 countries. We perceive you as real ascetics of arts and highly value you as ambassadors of peace and friendship.
Welcome to Uzbekistan, to the glorious city of Samarkand!
Dear participants of the festival!
As you know, various forums of music and arts are organized on different continents, in many regions of the world. The Sharq Taronalari International Music Festival, according to its high artistic criteria and adherence to classical musical traditions, occupies a special place among them.
Today, thanks to our festival, Samarkand attracts people from all over the world not only with its fine-looking architectural monuments – witnesses of distant times – as well as the amazing atmosphere of the legendary metropolis, but also with the enchanting oriental melodies that sound here these days.
Over the past years, for almost a quarter century, under the starry sky and blue domes of Samarkand, numerous magical melodies, life-giving tunes have sounded.
The festival helped discover dozens of artists who afterwards gained fame, talented young performers, and gave them wings for creative take-off.
Crucially, it has become a kind of platform for dialogue among diverse cultures and civilizations, countries and peoples.
The festival’s idea is based on the testament by the great Uzbek poet and thinker Alisher Navoi: “People of the world, live in friendship among yourselves, adorn the face of the native Earth with your talent and work!”
These exalted words are consonant with the wise saying of the great French classic Victor Hugo, who wrote that good aspirations, like the sun, illuminate the inner world of man.
Despite the fact that several centuries have passed, these words have not lost relevance even today, they continue find response in our hearts.
Each artist, stepping on this stunning stage on the majestic Registan Square, glorifies the high ideals of humanism that unite people regardless of their ethnic origin, language or religion. And for this, every one of you certainly deserve the highest praise and admiration.
Today, I would like to take this opportunity to express my opinion on one issue.
Active debate is underway nowadays about generative music, artificial intelligence. Assumptions suggest that in the future, music will be created without human intervention, only by technology.
Yet we all understand that no, even the most perfect, technical tool can replace a human’s breathing, his/her emotional excitement, the beauty of a living voice – in a word, the real art.
Genuine art, music can only be created by human beings who have the divine gift.
In our turbulent time, when various conflicts and armed confrontations intensify on the whole planet and people are increasingly leaving for the virtual world, it is music that awakens wonderful, good feelings, hope and faith in the future in the human soul.
Music as a phenomenon of art has great potential for the harmonious upbringing of the younger generation. Young people involved in arts begin to reflect on life in a different way, respect national and universal values. And I am convinced that such young people, who highly value the principles of humanism and tolerance, can protect the world from a spiritual crisis.
In this sense, we can say that music has the power of influence comparable with nothing.
Today our country is at a new stage of national development. Transformation and renewal are in progress in all walks of life, including in culture and arts.
Building on our experience of holding the Sharq Taronalari International Music Festival, for the first time we have organized the International Forum of Makom Art in Shahrisabz, the International Bakhshi Art Festival in Termez. Active preparations are underway for the International Festival of Applied Arts due in September in Kokand.
I express my gratitude for the support in holding these forums to such eminent institutions as UNESCO, ISESCO, the International Organization of Folklore Art and to all of you, the dedicated representatives of musical culture.
Our country boasts currently hundreds of schools of music and arts, academic lyceums, many theaters, art galleries and concert halls.
I think you will visit these creative venues, meet with our youth, to serve as master classes for them.
Let me take this opportunity to turn to you with a proposal.
If you have a desire to cooperate with our Conservatory or other educational institutions in this country, to teach our youth, you have my personal warm support.
Dear participants of the festival!
Our people, who love art, music, highly value the people of creativity, are very pleased to meet this forum.
I feel confident that acquaintance with the contemporary Uzbekistan, renewing from day to day, with our open and hospitable people will leave vivid, unforgettable impressions.
I wish success to the participants of the International Academic and Practical Conference entitled “Prospects for the Development of Traditional Musical Art of the Peoples of the East”, held as part of the festival.
On behalf of the festival participants and all our people, I express my sincere gratitude to the hardworking and noble inhabitants of Samarkand, who have done everything possible to make this art celebration organized at the highest level.
Let me express my gratefulness to all of you for your dedication to the musical art and a great contribution to its preservation and development.
Wish you new creative successes! May the love of millions of admirers of your talent always accompany you!
May peace and friendship among nations grow stronger on our entire beautiful planet!
Thanks for attention.