Moscow celebrates its 866th birthday on Sept. 7. Admittedly, nobody really knows why the first weekend of this month is earmarked as the anniversary of Yury Dolgoruky’s decision to found a city here, but it’s a long-established tradition, so who are we to argue? A more recent tradition, meanwhile, is to use the festivities as an excuse to promote various music festivals with free “taster sessions” at venues all around the city. Last year, these were bundled together at Park Pobedy; this year five separate events are scattered around different parks, offering a flavor of everything from IDM to folk music. And none of it will cost the audience a kopek.
Perhaps the biggest international name heading this way is Phil Hartnoll, of Orbital fame. He’s doing a DJ set as part of the KomfortDance event out in Strogino, which has been set up by the people behind the Krysha Mira club and the FortDance and SlowDance projects. Meanwhile, WOMAD is making its first visit to Russia, and Moscow audiences can enjoy a little taste of what the real deal will offer at Kolomenskoye. Georgian jazz siren Nino Katamadze and Balkan brass from Bucovina Club Orkestar top the bill at this World Music event.
Katamadze is closely associated with Usadba Jazz, and that well-respected event is also putting on an extra show for City Day. Switching its aristocratic surrounding at Arkhangelskoye for the no less lovely environs of Kuskovo, this strand brings Brand New Heavies as the star attraction. Dikaya Myata is another long-running festival that has grown steadily in recent years: its City Day event returns to its humble beginnings as a folk festival in Troparyovo Park.
Bolotnaya Ploshchad hosts another mini-festival, this time backed by Metro newspaper, with time-served indie-rockers Pilot and rising stars Nervy taking the headline slots. Elsewhere around town there’s a bizarre meeting of hip-hop and shanson at Luzhniki’s music and sporting celebration, and veteran Yekaterinburg band Chaif performs at Park Pobedy.
Most events run from 5 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 7. Admission is free and umbrellas are advised. More details are available at lgz-moscow.ru.
This article originally appeared at http://www.elementmoscow.ru