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A documentary, filmed in Muynak, takes honorable place at world film festivals

A documentary, filmed in Muynak, takes honorable place at world film festivals

A short documentary film by a New York director “waiting for the sea”, filmed in the city of Muynak of the Republic of Karakalpakstan, took the honorable place and titles as “Best documentary” and “Best camera work” at world film festivals in such as Moscow Shorts International Film Festival and Long Story Shorts International Film Festival.

At the same time, this film has participated in various nominations at several other international film festivals. In the film “Waiting for the Sea” the director connects the scene with electronic and folk music of the country, as well as the fate of the drying up of the Aral Sea. George Yitzhak was fascinated by the idea of the “Element” abstract electronic music festival, which was first held in September 2018 in the city of Muynak, Republic of Karakalpakstan.

The city is known for its tragic fate: once located on the southern shore of the Aral Sea and famous for its fishing industry, Muynak today is located tens of kilometers from the coast of the sea, which continues to dry.

In August 2019, he traveled to Uzbekistan for the second release of Element, as well as to immerse himself in Uzbek culture and the capital’s young electronic scene. The documentary he created presents his personal vision of an Uzbek who has never lived in Uzbekistan, and his search for links between ancient traditions and the futuristic movement.

At the same time, showing sensitivity and aesthetics, he destroys the stereotypes and clichés often used in the presentation of Uzbekistan, Karakalpakstan and the Aral Sea. The main goal of the director before the trip was to try to understand the visual language of the country, immerse himself in the atmosphere and show his own experience. George Yitzhak was born in Tashkent, but grew up and lives in New York. He is a documentary and news producer on one of the best evening news shows in the United States, NBC Nightly News, and is also a director.

In an interview with a correspondent for the Novastan portal dedicated to post-Soviet Central Asia, the director talks about how he learned about the Element festival: “It all started with an image that someone shared on Facebook: it was an Element poster, and it was an image of a woman in traditional Karakalpak clothes. But at the same time it was a poster conveying the style of electronic music.

Almost like a magical painting: it combined traditional culture and the way I’m used to seeing Uzbekistan with this very young and futuristic aesthetic. The combination of these two elements impressed me a lot, I clicked on it and continued to dive into this topic. So, I learned about the Element Festival. ” Later, George contacted the organizers of the festival and began to develop a new film project. He called his co-producer Neha Hirva, who he studied with in New York, and told her: “Look, I have a crazy idea and it doesn’t cost much money, but I can promise you it will be a great adventure.”

They began to exchange images, exchange ideas, and began to explore the world of Central Asian cinema. The documentary “Waiting for the Sea” was nominated at world film festivals, where it won pride of place and the title of “Best Documentary” in such as “Long Story Shorts International Film Festival”, “Moscow shorts International Short Film Festival”, “Prague International Film Festival ”,“ Lebanese Independent Film Festival”, “Ojai Film Festival”, “In The Palace International Short Film Festival ”,“ Lonely Wolf London International Film Festival”, “Tokyo Lift-Off Film Festival”. 

In the future, the director plans to show this film in the UK and Germany, where there is a large community of creative people and filmmakers, to open a window to Central Asia.

Khiva to host the Lazgi International Dance Festival

Khiva to host the Lazgi International Dance Festival

In order to promote national art, attract foreign tourists, the head of state signed a resolution on holding an international clang dance festival in Khorezm. 

According to the resolution, the Lazgi International Dance Festival and an international scientific and practical conference will be held in the city of Khiva, once every two years starting from 2022 on April 25-30.

“Khorezm Dance – Lazgi”, which occupies a special place in the rich history of the dance art of our country, is popular not only in the republic, but also in foreign countries with its unique style of performance and attractiveness. 

On 12 December 2019, the Khorezm dance “Lazgi” was included in the UNESCO Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage. Inclusion by UNESCO “Khorezm Dance – Lazgi” in the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity also testifies to the uniqueness of its art.

The festival is expected to contribute to the preservation and development of the age-old traditions of the art of Khorezm dance “Lazgi”, strengthening the bonds of friendship and brotherhood between peoples through dance art, further expanding the scope of creative cooperation and cultural ties at the international level.

Uzbekistan abolishes visas for tourists from 27 states

Uzbekistan abolishes visas for tourists from 27 states

Tashkent, Uzbekistan ( — Uzbekistan will abolish visas for tourists from 15 countries and visitors from 12 countries whose age is over 55 years old from 1 April 2017.Interim President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev signed a decree “On measures on ensuring rapid development of tourism industry in Uzbekistan”.

The decree said that from 1 April 2017, Uzbekistan cancelled the visa regime for the citizens of Australia, Austria, Great Britain, Germany, Denmark, Spain, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, Finland, Switzerland and Japan, entering the country for tourism for a period of no more than 30 days.

Uzbekistan also abolished the visa regime for citizens from Belgium, Indonesia, China (a part of tourist groups), Malaysia, the USA, France, Vietnam, Israel, Poland, Hungary, Portugal and the Czech Republic, who have reached 55 years of age and entering Uzbekistan for tourism at a period not exceeding 30 days.

Citizens of these countries at the entrance to Uzbekistan will pay an entry fee of US$50. The fee will be transferred to the state budget.

The document, confirming the payment of entrance fee, will serve as basis for entry to Uzbekistan, the decree said.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Uzbekistan in cooperation with Ministry of Finance, Ministry on development of information technologies and communications, Central Bank of Uzbekistan were ordered to submit an order of payment of entry fee by foreign citizens by 1 March 2017.

Uzbekistan Temir Yollari (Uzbekistan Railways) and Uzbekiston Havo Yollari (Uzbekistan Airways) in cooperation with the Committee on protection of state borders and State Customs Committee, as well as State Committee on development of tourism (former Uzbektourism) were entrusted to adopt measures on introduction of “green corridors” for foreign tourists at the international airports Tashkent, Samarkand, Bukhara and Urgench with simplified procedures of passing passport and customs control, and receiving luggage and providing transport services.

They were also entrusted to organize separate passage of passport control to residents and non-residents to create additional convenience to foreign citizens and speed up passing of this procedure.

B2B business meetings to be held in Benelux states

Tashkent, Uzbekistan ( — Business meetings between tour operators of Uzbekistan and Benelux countries will be held in Belgium, Netherlands and Brussels on 11-17 November 2016, Uzbektourism said.About 24 Uzbek tour operators are attending the events. These events will receive information about Uzbekistan and its tourism potential to tour companies from Amsterdam, Brussels and Luxembourg.

During the meetings, the Uzbek side will present tourism potential of Uzbekistan and taste the Uzbek dishes.

Euronews shows report on handicraft heritage in Bukhara

Euronews shows report on handicraft heritage in Bukhara


Fascinating gold embroidery, colourful pottery and handmade carpets. In the old caravan city of Bukhara merchants still sell their goods today under the ancient trading domes. In this edition of “Uzbekistan Life” we’ll discover the gems of the centuries old handicrafts.”

It’s busy at the master’s home: Umida Mukhamadiyeva and her colleagues are discussing their latest handmade carpets, weaving techniques and colours.


It’s a centuries old tradition that the women of the neighbourhood gather in the biggest house of the area to work together. They take great pride in the art of carpet weaving; an craft deeply rooted in the city’s history.

“These kind of carpets are part of our culture. If you enter the home of a Uzbek family you will see these carpets on the walls. We also have them on the floor,” explained Mukhamadiyeva.

Bukhara’s carpets are famous worldwide for their distinctive design and multi-coloured patterns. These colours come from natural dyes: the red from pomegranates, the yellow from onions or the brown from walnut peel.

“All the fibers we use are natural. We have a unique method of weaving and a design that makes our carpets different. We’re using a lot of motives of animals, tribal patterns and flowers,” she added.

The precious masterpieces are produced from silk, cotton or wool of a baby camel’s neck and it takes at least three months to complete a small rug.

At almost every corner of the bustling centre the artisans sell these carpets. The city is famous for its bazaars, caravanserais and trading domes.

Historian Ikhtiyor Kenjaev said: “Bukhara was located in one of the important locations in the centre of the Great Silk Road and from ancient times on the caravans and the big traders were passing through the city. Many kinds of different handicraft are still kept alive for example the ceramic works.”

One of the most famous craftsman of this region is Abdullo Narzullaev: “Ceramics are our family business, my father, my grandfather, my great-grandfather they were all ceramist. I’m in the sixth generation.”

The ceramic master of a pottery dynasty still uses the old techniques and only local materials, like the clay.

Pottery is highly popular in Uzbekistan and among the oldest crafts in the country.

“There are several centres of ceramics in Uzbekistan and each centre has its own style like different colours, different motives and different shapes. And the colours of the Bukhara area are green, brown and yellow,” said Narzullaev.

It takes no less than 24 steps to fabricate such wood-fired glazed earthenware pottery from start to finish. More than 60 different shapes and about 100 motives are used in the region of Bukhara.

But the city is also famous for another precious handicraft: gold embroidery. In ancient times the handicraft was reserved only for emirs and his courtiers.

Today dresses, caftans, shoes and even theatre curtains are decorated with the precious golden thread. Dilnoza Tosheva, 30, began learning the challenging needlework from an early age.

“I was taught this handicraft since I was little. That’s why it fascinates me, especially the shining of the gold. It inspires my soul,” said Tosheva.

In the next edition of “Uzbekistan Life” we’ll explore the more than 2,500 old city Termez, which boasts a unique archaeological treasure trove.

The 22nd Tashkent Tourism Fair in 2016

Tashkent, Uzbekistan ( — Twenty second Tashkent International Tourism Fair “Tourism on the Silk Road” (TITF) will be held in the Uzbek capital on 5-7 October 2016.

According to the Uzbektourism, the exhibition will take place at exhibition complex Uzexpocenter in Tashkent.

The exhibition is organized at the support of the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).

TITF is a tourism fair and business platform for representatives of tourism sector. Annually it attracts tourism experts to discuss perspectives of the development of the industry.



Uzbekistan improves tourism infrastructure

Target lists for construction and reconstruction of sanitary units (WC) under standard projects have been approved in Uzbekistan, reports press service of “Uzbektourism”.For example, sanitary facilities will be built on the territory of 125 gas filling stations, adjacent to 27 cultural heritage sites and entertainment facilities.

From September 1, 2016, gas stations which lack the standardized sanitary units available 24 hours a day will not be allowed to operate.

In this regard, ‘Uzbektourism’ and the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan for Architecture and Construction were charged with developing a model project of modern sanitary facilities in accordance with the town planning regulations within a month.

In addition, sanitary facilities will be built on a standard project around 27 cultural heritage sites and entertainment facilities, such as the Afrosiyob Museum in Samarkand, Buhara Emir’s Ark Palace, the Samanid Park, the Chor Bakr ensemble in Bukhara, Norbutabi Madrassah in Kokand, Abulkasim Madrassah in Tashkent, the Sultan Saodat complex, the National History Museum and Alpomish Park in Termez among others.


SCO states discuss development of tourism sphere


SCO states discuss development of tourism sphere

Tashkent, Uzbekistan ( Experts of working group on developing of cooperation in tourism of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) held a meeting in Moscow, Russia, on 24 March 2015.Members of the SCO member states and representatives of Iran, Pakistan, Mongolia and Sri Lanka participated in the event.

The sides expressed satisfaction with joint work on preparation of the first meeting of the heads of national tourism administrations of the SCO member states.

The sides exchanged opinion on proposal of Russia on draft programme on developing of cooperation in sphere of tourism of the SCO. The draft final documents of the first meeting of the heads of national tourism administrations of the SCO member states were developed.

The protocol of the session was signed at the end of the meeting.