Spring and summer for music lovers and other arts – time open-airs, opportunities to meet your favorite artists in natural settings and in the field, in the woods or in the mountains, to visit the cinema in the open air, to go into the open air, to watch street theater. Not this time. Suddenly flew a “black Swan” the coronavirus has made adjustments to their hard. Many festivals (e.g., Park Live) have cancelled or postponed until next year, others “wild mint”, “Usadba Jazz” temporarily migrated to the Internet. A pioneer among online festivals became World Online Festival organized by producer and musician Pavel Korotkov. He has turned into a movement uniting musicians, theatrical figures, scientists from around the world, in a media channel where you can see not only performances, but also interviews, lectures, performances. The creators of the witty approach to creating the logo: this is planet Earth affected by coronavirus, surrounded by a ribbon with the slogan – “in net we trust” (“we believe in the Internet”).

the founding Father of this story Pavel Korotkov is a professional musician and producer who has almost 20 years experience in artistic and festive activities. With his first group he was one of the co-organizers and headliners the legendary and, unfortunately, defunct informal festival “Empty hills”. His current musical project – “Afrikanda” combined, fully justifying its name, indigenous African musicians performing Afro-beat, soukous, reggae and other styles of the “black continent”. Paul is the only Russian musician in the lineup, and he went on organizing a winter festival “Africa – Moscow”, which takes place in winter, a jazz-Alexey Kozlov club and together Russian and African artists. His next brainchild was the Finnish-Russian festival “the Cuckoo”, to collect about 8 000 spectators in Viborg from 2016. In 2020 it was planned to loudly celebrate the fifth anniversary of the event: the organizers found a partner in Finland and is literally sitting on suitcases, to travel there to carry out pre-party, which was held in March. Just then thunder boomed, and offline event had to be cancelled. However, there is a silver lining: Pavel Korotkov decided not to give up and as a result has created an entirely new format, which developed into something more than a music festival, platform Festival World Online. Her summer will be held this year and the jubilee “Cuckoo”, only online. About how it all happened, he says in an interview with “MK”:

– From the Russian side in Finland was supposed to go very bright group of “Dough”, which calls his style “Russian grove” or “PostalCode” and performs folk music as e�� hear the inhabitant of the big city, as well as our maître Sergey Nikolaevich Starostin, Chairman of the Russian Union of Folk and artistic Director of the festival “Cuckoo”. Of course, when it was cancelled, at first we were very upset: there has been a huge amount of work. To reset the energy potential that has accumulated, not wanted, so we decided to hold the festival online. We have assembled a very creative team, many of which were with me by the organizers of the “Empty hills”. First, from resentment, to spite that damn virus, we called it “Virus” – that is “Finland – Russia”.

Since I have long been engaged in international activities, worked with African, Indian musicians, we realized that we should not waste time on trifles – it is necessary to do a project where on one platform it will be possible to unite musicians and artists from around the world. Then the name was transformed in World Online Festival. Since March 30 we spent on the channel for over 12 broadcasts of concerts, did about a dozen interviews with representatives of musical, theatrical industry such as associate artistic Director of the Moscow theatre of Oleg Tabakov, Pavel Brun, the President of the festival “Usadba Jazz” by Mary Semushkina, the largest St. Petersburg’s producer Oleg Grabko.

– what is the main concept of all this?

the Festival, in fact, turned into a little media. His idea is to provide a platform to talented culture, which, unfortunately, faced with the mass situation was overboard. The project is actively developing, and they already have the opportunity to broadcast their ideas, their creativity to a wider audience. We already have, in addition to the concert format, different headings – children’s, theatrical, we are preparing several projects with the Moscow Theatre of the Young Spectator, with the Moscow art theatre. Ahead of performances by musicians from Ireland, from côte d’ivoire, stream American scholar and musician from Zimbabwe, already had a stream of Goa with Russian artists living in India. I found that in recent years the world has formed a very strong Diaspora of Russian musicians, and we can cooperate successfully in the digital space. Becoming in the direction of the online pioneers, now we are also negotiating cooperation with other online festivals.

– Can you compare this experience with conducting offline events?

I thought about it. I’ve spent my life devoted to this activity. If a two-day offline festival is gearing up for a year, in online format, everything happens faster, the festival is non-stop, being broadcast not only on weekends but also on weekdays. Now, when people are in isolation the project is particularly relevant, but I’m sure interest in him will remain after the end of the quarantine. We are supported by a major TV station, also covering the concerts of the festival, many artists and producers such as Alexander Cheparukhin, who spent a Russian cult of the world the Womad festival, brought here by King Crimson, David Silvian and other famous musicians, was the producer of Pussy Riot. Going back to offline and festivals that we create including the database for them. Because the producers can come and see the live business card many artists and invite them to their events. This well-known musicians such as the already mentioned Sergey Starostin, a group of “Volga” and Angela Manukyan, Andrey Kotov (Creator of the “Sirin”), and only gaining popularity, talented performers. In General, it is also auxiliary base to work offline.

– So, in the current situation there are pluses? It gave the opportunity to create a new format, for example…

– Since there have been a very serious disaster that has affected almost all inhabitants of the Earth, the situation showed how a conditional state, religious framework. Just we’re all people living on the same planet. That’s the idea of healthy globalism embodied in the festival and its logo. Boundaries are conventions, it is important that we could listen and hear each other in dealing with any adversity, and even more so with such a big disaster, like a worldwide pandemic.

– As you think, whether really the formation of a new online music industry that will exist as a self-sufficient structure? Or is it a utopia, and somehow your Internet activity will be associated with offline activities?

– I think digital technology is a very powerful tool that should be used, and for Internet projects the future. Well, for example, 15 years ago we did not know that a team of young guys will come up with a social network, which today has become a platform not only for communication, but also for the development of culture, business; these guys just figured out how to disseminate information and share it in a new way. I have a lot of friends, who, living in one country operate across the Internet to another. This greatly saves time, gives you the opportunity to not be tied to a place. The more people realize this, the more you will develop many industries, including music, and media. This is already happening. My friends who worked for many years on television say that now the telecentre – it is just the walls, filled with junk iron. They see, for example, that some guy on their team 30 million views online and understand that their time is up. I think pandemic – kick to ensure that we quickly mastered the technology and smo��whether actively cooperate.