The Best of St Petersburg’s Cultural Forum

The Best of St Petersburg’s Cultural Forum

From the 14th to the 16th of November St Petersburg will host a cultural forum of international significance. World leaders in music, art and dance will flock to the Hermitage and many other galleries and theatres throughout the city to discuss the future of the arts. Though some of the talks are off bounds to the general public, there will be quite a few enlightening discussions about topics ranging from how to make cities greener to the history of the art that are open to anyone. As this is an international event, the majority of the talks will be held in both English and Russian with some even in German, Chineese or Italian. For those who’d rather just sit-back and appreciate art instead of getting into the nitty-gritty details of it, there will be a whole host of unmissable performances on show: from a “handmade music” concert that promises to be 100% unique to a heavenly, candle-lit choral concert at St Isaac’s Cathedral.

We’ve rounded up the top 10 best events that the Cultural Forum has to offer.

What to do this week in St Petersburg?

In the cultural capital of Russia, a world famous forum of the arts will take place at the end of this week. With almost all of St Petersburg’s museums and palaces taking part, this event offers a unique opportunity to experience Russia’s refined culture at its height. From art history to opera,  there’s something for everyone.

Musical premiere in the Hermitage

The Symphony Orchestra of the Silesian Philharmonic (Poland) will be under the direction of the maestro, Israeli conductor Daniel Oren who has worked with the likes of Luciano Pavarotti. Together with some of Russia’s brightest young stars, they will perform the works of Carl Maria von Weber, Joseph Haydn, and Giacomo Puccini.
Date: 14 November 2019 8:00 PM - 10:15 PM
Address: Armorial Hall of the State Hermitage Museum - Palace Square, 2, St Petersburg

A night of Elgar and Bach

The greatest achievements of the masters of the baroque and romantic eras will be brought to life in the gilded Church of Saints Peter and Paul (Petrikirche). With violins crafted by the great Amati and Ruggeri and a an imposing organ at center stage, this unique collaboration between Russian and British musicians should be unforgettable.
Date: 14 November 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Address: Church of Saints Peter and Paul (Petrikirche) - Nevsky prospekt, 22/24, St Petersburg

Choral concert at St Isaac’s

The best hymns of the 20th century that Russia and Britain produced will be sung by the St Petersburg choir in the splendour of St Isaac’s Cathedral. Though not all the hymns will be in English, the language-barrier will no doubt be broken by the stirring notes of sacred song.
Date: 14 November 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Address: St Isaac’s Cathedral - St Isaac's Square, 4, St Petersburg

Exhibition of the "State Film Fund Archive. Soviet Film Posters. Theatre in Film and on Billboards"

This is a rare chance to find out more about the Soviets through an exhibition of original film posters from the State Film Fund Archive of Russia. Unfortunately, all the descriptions will be in Russian.
Date: 14 November 9:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Address: Lendoc studio - Kryukov canal emb., 12, St Petersburg

The Moon Man

More than a century ago Nicholas Miklouho-Maclay, an intrepid Russian ethnographer and anthropologist, ventured into the steaming forests of Papua-New Guinea. Risking life and limb in the territory of cannibals, his fearlessness would make Indiana Jones look a coward in comparison.
Nicholas Miklouho-Maclay’s descendent of the same name tracks his footsteps through those very same treacherous forests in a documentary that will no doubt be as informative as it is entertaining.
Date: 14 November 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Address: General Staff Building, Red Hall - Palace Square, 6/8, St. Petersburg

A “Handmade Music” concert 

A saxophonist, harpist, a folk wind musician and the top balalaika player in
Russia among others, will play what has been described as “primal” and “handmade” compositions based on the rich musical traditions of Romania, the Balkans and even Japan and India. This is possibly the most unique performance of the forum.
Date: 14 November 7:00 PM - 9:30 PM
Address: St. Petersburg Academic Philharmonia - Mikhaylovskaya Ulitsa, 2, St Petersburg

Jazz across borders 

St Petersburg has dozens of effortlessly cool jazz bars and as part of the cultural forum, a jazz competition for budding bands will be held in one of the hottest winging spots in town. Pop for a bit of boogie and a drink to Freedom House at the end of this week.
Date: 15 November 18:00-21:00
          16 November 17:30-20:30
Address: Freedom - Kazanskaya Ulitsa, 7, St Petersburg

Dialogue about fake news and post truth 

The hottest word since Donald Trump’s election has engulfed the West. Here’s a chance to hear Russia’s perspective from the mouths of the giants of Russian press: Aleksey Venediktov, Editor-in-Chief of Echo radio station and Mikhail Gusman from the Russian News Agency TASS.
Date: 16 November time 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
Address: General Staff Building, Red Hall - Palace Square, 6/8, St. Petersburg

Robot vs. Human: what skills will win?

Experts representing the UN and other organizations will debate the impacts of atomization and how best humanity can adapt to the new job market.
Date: 16 November 1:45 PM - 3:15 PM
Address: Manege Central Exhibition Hall - St Isaac Square, 1, St Petersburg                                                                      

Where is the world heading?

Examining the impacts of modern technologies such as VR through the lens of the arts, leading business men and artists explore how art could better utilize new developments coming onto the market.
Date: 16 November 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM 
Address: Manege Central Exhibition Hall - St Isaac Square, 1, St Petersburg 

For the full program or to purchase tickets visit:

Photo by @jeremy_mcgilvrey

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