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Presenting presidential prizes for young culture professionals and for writing and art for children

March 26, 2024, The Kremlin, Moscow

A ceremony to present the 2023 Presidential prizes for young culture professional and for wiring and art for children and young people took place in the Kremlin’s St Catherine Hall. 

The ceremony was timed to Cultural Worker’s Day marked on March 25.

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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, friends, winners,

Yesterday, we marked Cultural Worker’s Day. One of the traditions is the awards ceremony for writing for children and prizes for young culture professionals.

I would like to emphasise that culture and its spiritual, ethical, and moral values become increasing important in today’s difficult, tragic times.

It is crucial for us to rely on these values of creativity, humanism, and mercy now as we go through hard times reliving the events of last Friday. They are bringing us together in our support for all the victims and in our resolve to be strong and united.

The clear-cut, unequivocal position of those who serve culture is playing an enormous role in this respect.

Today your message and opinion, your creative work itself directly affects how people feel and strengthens their patriotic sentiment. You preserve and enrich the knowledge and traditions of Russian culture, its continuity, and make an exceptional contribution to educating and molding the rising generations. In fact, you shape Russia’s future.

It is particularly valuable when great, highly praised masters become mentors for children and young people. One of them is the brilliant and world-famous vocalist Nikolai Didenko. The Bely Parokhod (White Steamship) foundation he established almost 20 years ago opens up new horizons for gifted children with disabilities and reveals the talents of children in difficult circumstances. Mr Didenko, thank you for this important project. I wish your foundation and its mentees great success.

Marina Leonova also devoted herself to the new generations of creators. A guardian of traditions of the great Russian ballet school, not only does she train future dancing stars but she also raises compassionate, caring, and responsible people. The Moscow Academy of Choreography that you head is famous for its educational and socially important initiatives – charity concerts and volunteer actions.

Director of the Ryazan State Regional Puppet Theatre Konstantin Kirillov is also distinguished for his diverse and broad interests. Under his guidance, the theatre has become one of the world leaders in this kind of visual art. This has become a venue where traditions are cherished while innovations and creative experiments are always welcome. It hosts the oldest and largest international festival of puppet theatres and has a successful laboratory for young artists.

It is important that our celebrated masters have worthy successors. Clear proof of this is the achievements of today’s prizewinners for young culture professionals. The outstanding traditions of Russian realism continue through painter Alexei Kryukov. He is an icon, portrait, and landscape painter, who created an entire gallery of canvases and frescoes that draw the viewer back to our spiritual origins, to the greatness and valour of military duty and defence of the Fatherland.

Celloist Alexander Ramm has become one of the most famous and popular musicians in today’s Russia. He is a true virtuoso with a wide repertoire, and his talent invariably captivates the audiences of the best concert venues. But he considers the most important thing to be his tours in Russia, the opportunity to make philharmonic art accessible to people in the most remote corners of the country.

Preserving the heritage of the peoples of Russia is another mission which is essential for our multi-ethnic country and our entire society. Mengi Ondar, who is both a teacher and a scientist, has excelled in this field. She collects, studies, and actively promotes the original folklore of her native land, Tuva, making a great contribution to conserving and developing the ethnic and cultural diversity of our Fatherland.


Your art, your educational activities fill the cultural space of Russia with the energy of true creativity, inspiration, and humanism. You add a new, expressive touch to our most important traditional values: spiritual and moral ideals, historical memory, love for the Fatherland and responsibility for its fate. Thank you for your dedicated service to your cause and the great culture of Russia. And, of course, congratulations on winning these prizes. I wish you further creative success, new heights and achievements. Congratulations.

Ceremony for presenting the winners’ badges.


Vladimir Putin: Friends, winners,

Once again, congratulations on your awards today.

This is a very good nomination as we thank for the work, congratulate and decorate people working for the youth and children, and at the same time we decorate those who have just become outstanding figures of our art and have already achieved results, while at the same time, as one of the winners has said, they are ready, as young culture professionals, to move on and share their knowledge with children, with the next generations.

This is an endless river of creativity, a river of talent that fills the hearts of the peoples of the Russian Federation, the soul of the peoples of Russia, making them invincible, standing strong and looking to the future. All this is thanks to you, because art reflects the state of the soul and supports it from the inside.

Thank you very much. Congratulations.

March 26, 2024, The Kremlin, Moscow