Bella Shirin was born in Kaunas after her parents returned to the city from a concentration camp. During the Soviet era, Bella’s family was one of the first that was allowed to leave to Israel. However, even after she had adapted to life abroad, she has always kept the love for her hometown alive. A conversation with a charismatic Kaunas resident about nostalgia for native Kaunas and the decades-long journey home.
“A few days ago, while walking down the Laisvės (Eng. Liberty) Avenue, I recalled an episode from my childhood. I was eight or nine years old then. The friends of my parents came and they spoke about the USA, New York, as of the center of the world. I got angry and told them they have disappointed me. Lithuania and Kaunas are the center of the world. I was born and grew up here. It is time for Kaunas to wake up. Kaunas will definitely become the European Capital of Culture in 2022. Culture allows you to learn and grow as a personality, therefore, my personal commitment is to work for it and make it spread on the international level. We all have to contribute to make this happen. There is so much creativity, thoughtfulness, and genius in this city. Therefore, I am certain that major international projects can and have to originate here, in our hometown Kaunas. Let every single one of us seek, act, and think about the ways we can contribute instead of a personal benefit!” – Yours Bella
A dancer, choreographer, and dance educator Birutė Letukaitė is convinced that Kaunas – which has already had its golden age – can again become a modern city, which sets cultural trends. A conversation with the founder and head of AURA theatre about the daily challenges that many contemporary dance creators meet and inspiration sources that lie in every step.
So far, almost all of the 57 countries which Linas Adomaitis has traveled to confirmed the belief of the musician that the second largest cities are unique. Kaunas, for that matter, is not an exception. A conversation with a music performer, composer, and producer, who grew up and started his musical path here, about the childhood pranks, musical opportunities, that opened in Kaunas, and love for his hometown.Read more
A swimmer Rūta Meilutytė is convinced that sports culture in Lithuania and Kaunas, in particular, is taking the right direction. A conversation with a multiple European and World record swimmer about her hometown Kaunas, sports culture in Lithuania, and possibilities for innovation in the field.Read more
Photojournalist Artūras Morozovas believes that social topics can be discussed everywhere and the whole social stratification in our society. An interview with the photographer who has recorded the conflicts of Georgia and Ukraine. An interesting talk about the war, the role of culture in various conflict zones as well as Artūras’ local Kalnieciai micro district and its uniqueness.Read more
A British journalist Richard Green who came to Lithuania for the first time by accident and has been coming back for decades since believes that Kaunas is a city full of curiosities worth recording. An interview with a passionate traveller on the positive side of immigration, globally growing multiculturalism, and Kaunas, the city that is great even for winter visits…Read more
Kaunas resident Inga Turminienė studied economics, later finished culinary classes, went to Copenhagen for an internship at one of the most famous restaurants in the world, and realised her childhood dream to open a restaurant. Inga Turminienė – the founder and chef of Ieti restaurant – is convinced: food makes a big part of any community’s culture, and it is important to everyone.
“I’ve always been an obsessive traveller – both for the simple joy of discovery and in furthering my career as a travel journalist. I’m an enthusiastic believer in the positive power that travel can have in knocking down barriers and broadening minds and have so far visited around 130 countries.
I’ve been fortunate enough to attend the European Capital of Culture opening ceremonies of Riga and Umea (in northern Sweden). The Capital of Culture concept is a wonderful way of nudging the local population to rediscover a hometown that they take for granted, and of pointing an international spotlight on cities that find it hard to consciousness of foreign tourists.Read more
A resident of Lithuania since 2001, the award-winning photographer and curator Richard Schofield moved to Kaunas in September 2013. A graduate of the University of the Arts London who has founded the International Centre for Litvak Photography in Kaunas and was nominated for the 2014 Sugihara Foundation Citizen of Tolerance Award tells the inconvenient stories of the city and how Kaunas could have a centre of creativity, memory, and education.