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KLM Rocks Across Europe!
Santa Claus in Moscow
Television Is a Time Suck
The Reality of Irrelevance
Salute Mayor Luzhkov
Impeachment Happens
I Am Not The Only One...
I'm Back! Did Ya Miss Me?
Chechnya Burning
Weddings in Winter
The Jews Are Here!
Gailyn Goes to Town
Is There a Central Bank?
Santa Barbara is Real
Nick's Thanksgiving in Russia
Den' Rozhdeniya = Birthdays
Those Crazy Expats
It's Just a Few Drops of Vodka...
Elections Are Always Rigged
The Blind Leading the Blind
Good Russian Grooms
You Say 'Boris Berezovskiy' Fast
Too Cold to Care!
Russian Oil Towns
Sneaky Siberian Tigers
Which Way is St Peterburg?
Where am I again? Oh, yeah...
I Love Me Some Vodka
It's a Gosorg Halloween
Hunger Comes to Us All
Why Don't They Just Learn English?!
Post-Crisis, Life Goes On
Is Yeltsin 'The Man'?
Murmansk - Brrrr!
Taganka Hides Her Secrects
These are Communists
It's a Power Vaccum
The Commies are Back
You Better Buy Russian!
Sex Ed Soviet Style
Party over, oops outta time!
Russian Healthcare in Moscow
What Russian Financial Crisis?
YE Prices in Russia
The Hungry Duck
Russian Caviar Mafia
Magical Mushrooms
Shhhh! We're Bear Hunting
Soviet Street Scams
Bez Dollarov
A Koshka Konspiracy
On The Dacha
The Banking Implosion
Surviving Army Life
Shashleek is Steak on Steroids
Dacha Thinking
Beach Weekend
Dos Vedanya
Hello from Vladivostok
Equality Means Only She Works
Jogging is an Extreme Sport
Russians Have Reunions Too
My Folks in Massive Moscow
Better than Fireworks
Miners Are Real Men
The Russian Mafia is the Roof
No One Smiles in the CIS
One Year Anniversary
Russian Brides Rock
Laura is My St Pete Connection
Change is in the Wind
Chuck Norris' Beverly Hills Casino
The Expat Woman's Predicament
Street Food is Yummy!
Spring Flowers Make June Leavers
The Provinces Are Provincial
Ever Take an Elektrichka?
The English Invasion
Nuttin Like New Money
Rules Are Made to Break
All Black is Russian Fashion
Easter Memories = Easter Dinner
Politics, Russian Style
Theresa Tries to Russify
I Go to Gay Clubs Worldwide
I Hide on Women's Day
New & Shiny: Nizhny Novgorod
Psst! Wanna job in Moscow?
Fili Park Has All the Bootlegs
Web Page Reactions
Take a Break at Dom Odaha
Expat Living in Moscow is Swank
Why Are You Remonting?
They Look Like Telephones...
In Need of a Decent Hairstylist
Smashing Bottles in Red Square


Russia, October 5, 1998

Propaganda is Good for You

The place to be on a Saturday night!

ahhhhhJohnson's Russia List, October 5, 1998

Russia's Youth Dance Away Crisis

By Nick Wadhams Moscow AP

At the Propaganda dance club, manager Masha Maslyukova watched calmly as her harried bouncers held back a line of young people pushing and shoving to get in. It could have been a crowd of depositors frantic to remove their money from one of the city's failing banks. But the rumbling techno music within -- not Russia's financial crisis -- was whipping up this crowd.

'I've got no fear of this club closing,' Maslyukova said. 'Whatever happens, we will be the last one in Moscow.'

mmmmmRussia's younger generation seems determined to keep partying in the face of the country's latest eonomic crisis. The crowds are still turning up at many of Moscow's popular dance clubs and casinos, though smaller establishments are seeing a dropoff in attendance.

Under communism, Western-style clubs did not exist, or were secreted away from the government's eye and hard to find. Since the 1991 breakup of the Soviet Union, discos, casinos and restaurants have sprouted throughout Moscow and in other cities, creating an energetic night life. 'We come here to unwind,' 23-year-old Anya Sidnenko shouted over the sound of blaring music in Propaganda, located in downtown Moscow a five minute drive from Red Square. 'It's better to go dancing than sit around moaning.'

The Propaganda crowd, young Russians dressed in the latest fashions, did not seem at all affected by the crisis. They piled into the club's steamy main hall or sat in booths on balconies overlooking the dance floor, sipping cocktails and beer. Some casinos around the city also said they were still doing reasonably well, though the crisis is less than two months old and could get worse.

Still, the first wave of cutbacks has already hit. Some club and casino owners said they were reducing their menus, laying off staff, cutting wages and shortening their hours of operation. 'Of course the crisis is hurting us,' said Janna Volkova, manager of the A-Club, a favorite spot for the older-20s crowd. 'Most of our clients are from the middle class, and they're the ones who are hardest hit.'

A more somber feeling was in the air, Volkova said. 'People are still showing up, they're just drinking more vodka,' she said. 'I hope we'll survive, but it's just impossible to predict what will happen.' Some clubs have begun listing their prices in dollars to guard against the recent swings in the Russian ruble.

As Saturday night gave way to Sunday dawn, a group of clubgoers agreed that popular places like Propaganda, with a low cover charge and a young crowd would survive, but their numbers would shrink. 'Things are just super right now,' gushed 20-year-old Klara Tamnachuk, as she stood outside a club to escape the heat of the crowded dance floor. 'We're relaxed ... but only while there's money.'

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