Is lesbian kiss in Crimean play ‘gay propaganda’?

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07/01/2019

A play in Crimea has created a stir on Russian social media after a video clip emerged of a scene which featured women kissing. The production was staged by the Gogol School theatre lab during the Tavrida Festival, an annual art event organised by Russian state youth agency Rosmolodyozh. Reaction has been mixed, with some praising the audacity of the director, Ilya Romashko, and others calling it pure provocation. Given Russia’s 2013 law banning the spread of “gay propaganda” among under-18s, the festival’s organisers have since issued an apology. They said they did not know that “the fragment that caused a controversial response” would take place and that their trust had been betrayed. Tavrida producer Sergei Khomenok posted on the popular social network VKontakte that he was sad that just one single minute from a provocative scene was pinpointed out of the whole production and had gone viral, adding it was like a stab in the back.

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