Buy my watercolours at Kava cafe, Todmorden

Watercolours at Kava Cafe
Watercolours at Kava Cafe

Drop by a popular Todmorden cafe called Kava in Rochdale Rd and check out my latest watercolour exhibition. There are six paintings altogether, in the price range £50-£100.

OxanaKavaExhibition20102015I have done three new pieces for this exhibition: two flowers and a local landscape. The other two are landscapes I had painted earlier: one realist and one more abstract. The exhibition is on until 1 December.

Hurry and get a gift of a local watercolour painting for that special someone!




Sherlock Suite album is out

SherlockSuiteAlbum2015“Sherlock Suite” is an album comprising 11 poems by Oxana Poberejnaia accompanied by original music score by Rene Sens. The music enhances and creates new meaning to the words.

It’s a story of a mother, wife and a relatively sane person obsessed with the BBC drama Sherlock. Family, binge eating, addiction to television, British national identity, weather and cuisine – and Sherlock is with her every step of the way!


Listen to the album and download for free here.

Sherlock is with Oxana as she complains about the tragic situation with baking in the homeland of The Beatles and Monty Python. Episode 2 of Sherlock consoles her as she goes to sleep after an exhausting and unrewarding day caring for a young child. Sherlock is her treat in the November twilight coloured by the radiant yellow leaves.

It is also a hindrance on her spiritual path, as after watching Sherlock she is too restless to sit calmly in meditation. Sherlock is a cue for contemplation on loneliness, hopelessness and friendship in this world.

Frame drumming at French and Breton music and dance workshop

Sandi and I have discovered French folk music and dance and met some wonderful musicians

Incidentals and Todmorden Frame Drum Group

Petra and musicians Petra and musicians

On Sat 26 September 2015 Oxana and Sandi of Incidentals attended French and Breton music and dance workshop organised by Les Panards Dansants – French Music and Dance in West Yorkshire.

The music/dance workshop, 1 to 2.30 pm (£2) was brilliant, we had such a great time. There was around 20 or more musicians playing guitars, violin, mandolin and similar instruments, bag pipes, bodhran, accordian, tambourine and much more. They had obviously played together a lot, they were excellent!

Neil, first left with a hand drum on the photo, also played a Glen Velez tambourine and a Meinl pandeiro. He learnt from YouTube!

Sandi and Oxana at the workshop Sandi and Oxana at the workshop

We joined in with our drums.

There was lovely food to help yourself to and make a brew in the interval. (Refreshments (£2) or bring and share a dish).

Then lots more people arrived for the Dance workshop:…

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Spring is welcome in Calderdale: together we celebrate

Todmorden Frame Drum Group and all-women frame drum band Incidentals held a community Spring celebration

Incidentals and Todmorden Frame Drum Group

Circle Dance for celebrating Spring Circle Dance for celebrating Spring

We drummed, we sang and we danced with the help of musicians from Incidentals band and Todmorden Frame Drum Group at Welcome Spring communal celebration on 21 March.

Other creatives and spiritual teachers joined:

  • Guest bodhrán player Anna Zueva-Owens,
  • Guest fiddle and recorder player Anna Butler,
  • Sacred Song teacher Susan Askey, who teaches on first Sundays of every month at 2 pm in Hebden,
  • and Sandi and Irene, members of the circle dance group led by Sophia Hatch that meets at the Oddfellows Hall, Todmorden on Thursday mornings.

The circle is open, but never broken!

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My poems are in The Seventh Quarry, Issue 21, pp. 50-51

TheSeventhQuarry21FrontI was so honoured when Peter Thabit Jones accepted two of my poems to be published in The Seventh Quarry poetry magazine. Peter Thabit Jones’ poetry is one of these rare phenomena nowadays. It is sincere, it is about something, and it is masterfully done. “Harry Pushed Her” makes me shed tears from my softening heart. And yet it is written with such a light touch, down-to-earth language and elegant, subtle rhyming.

Water Lilies by Claude Monet
Water Lilies by Claude Monet

His Lavacourt, Winter 1881: A Painting by Claude Monet is a gentle exploration of relationships between art and life, between colour, seasons and states of mind. In it, Peter Thabit Jones demonstrates his interest in interweaving images and words, which most recently manifested in the book Immagine & Poesia – Images and Poetry, in which Peter Thabit Jones is one of the contributors.

Issue 21 of The Seventh Quarry magazine also contains a review of The Divine Kiss by Carolyn Mary Kleefeld, where each poem is illustrated by the author. I must say, the paintings look gorgeous, reminiscent of Klimt and Chagall. EnchantedForestThe Seventh Quarry magazine is famous for its international content. It publishes works by poets literally from around the world. Reading it for me was so refreshing: I never knew what was coming around the next corner, and each poem was like another curious tree in an enchanted forest.

I found Johnmichael Simon‘s (Israel) poem “End Game or Beginning”, about a human chess master defeating a computer by sneezing, amusing and encouraging. I know it’s not rational, but I have always felt sour about a chess computer beating Kasparov. I know that the computer simply has more computing resources, but still I want the human to win.

The poem “Listening to the Trains” about Nelson Mandela’s death by Merryn Williams (England) appealed to me if only for the fact that it is difficult to find published contemporary poetry dedicated to political issues which matter to people. Merryn Williams’ other poem, “Australia” is accessible and sincere: it is about a Mother in the days of old who has not heard from her son for 15 years since he had gone to Australia.

The Seventh Quarry published a selection of poems by Aura Christi from Romania, translated by Olimpia Iacob and Co-translator Jim Kacian. Her poem “Ah, the Naked Trees” is like one of those paintings, where contours of objects only barely peek through delicate coloured mist. It did not capture me by its subject, but by its atmosphere which was unmistakably tangible, rising from the page and grabbing you. Really well done.

Aura Christi’s poem “Winter Pastel”, a surrealist painting this time, is even titled in visual terms. And her “How Large the Eye Is” is philosophically brilliant – and very akin to Victor Pelevin’s latest book The Love for Three Zuckerbrins, which has been occupying my thoughts and colouring my aesthetic perceptions recently.

ChanukahAda Aharoni‘s (Israel) “After Thirty Years” literally reduced me to tears – and in a public place, too! I was waiting for my child while she was in one of her clubs, when I came to this poem in the magazine. It is a story of a Jewish person returning to her house in Egypt, abandoned 30 years ago and meeting  the present occupier, an Arab woman. What follows is an object and sense-filled story of sharing food and a Hanukkah miracle – when Monira gives the protagonist the Talit and prayer shawl of her Father, preserved in her grandmother’s velvet bag, which this Arab woman had stored for 30 years. Beautiful.

I liked both poems by Annabelle Moseley (America) very much. For one thing, she carefully constructs them using regular rhyming stanzas. So I just respect the work and care that went into the poems. The first poem “The Scapegoat’s Dream” is a take on epic poetry and reflects on the story of Joseph and the scapegoat tradition. I feel that we need more of these well-written, narrative and mythological poems nowadays that matter to community.

Marionette_Deutschland_19._JahrhundertThe other poem by Annabelle Moseley entitled “The Marionette’s Manifesto” is equally well-crafted, with each stanza’s last line repeated as the first line of the next stanza, each time in a different context and with a slightly different meaning. The first line of the whole poem and the last line are the same: “I’d like to shake your hand. Come, pull my string.” (p. 40 and 43) The whole poem is a delightful, light philosophical treatise on causes, conditions, and creating art within constrictive circumstances. Very Buddhist. Expertly done.

The magazine contains an interview with Kyung-nyun Richards, a Korean poet and translator by Peter Thabit Jones, which I read with interest. Kyung-nyun Richards writes poetry both in her native Korean and in her acquired English – similar to my situation with Russian and English. She translates her poems back and forth for a bilingual edition of her book of poetry. By now, I have written more poems in English than in Russian, and the tendency does not seem to be changing in the near future.

Hangugeo-ChosonmalI appreciate the differences between languages, which Kyung-nyun Richards mentions. For instance, I feel the same way about English as Kyung-nyun Richards, when she says that “it has a wealth of verbs and abstract nouns, and conceptual words that cover large semantic areas”. And by a strange coincidence, I feel that Russian, like Korean “is more descriptive having a wealth of adjectives and adverbs of manner and quality.” (p.11) In addition, apparently, Korean is an infective language, just like Russian.

So crafting a poem using English for me is like building with Lego, whereas using Russian is more like sculpting with multicolored play dough.

Kyung-nyun also says she does not like to think that things are lost in translation. In my life, wonderful translations into Russian of Alice in Wonderland by Nina Demurova, Winnie the Pooh by Boris Zakhoder, and much of Shakespeare and English folk songs by Samuil Marshak played and are still playing a huge part. The magazine also contains a review of a lovely international and poets/artists collaboration Immagine & Poesia – Images and Poetry, available from this website – a genuine treat for poetry and art lovers.

TheSeventhQuarry21BackI got two poems published in this issue of The Seventh Quarry. “Genesis of Frost” could only have been born in North England where I live, where matters of moisture and cold are closer to our hearts than almost any others. “Promise” is a desperate love poem to Crimea, now annexed by Russia. I was lucky enough to visit two years prior to that event and fell in love instantly. I end the poem with a paraphrase of the last lines of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 116 (obviously).

Incidentals at World Vegan Day Gig, 1 November 2014, Todmorden

My band Incidentals played at World Vegan Day Gig

Incidentals and Todmorden Frame Drum Group

Incidentals at World Vegan Day Gig Incidentals at World Vegan Day Gig

We were happy to play at World Vegan Day Gig organised by 3 Valley Veg*ns for two reasons: One, we got free delicious vegan dinner, and Two: it was the first time when Clare, our new flute player, joined us in performance.

Clare with her Native American Flute Clare with her Native American Flute

You can see Clare’s short bio here. Clare plays classical flute, as well as two Native American flutes: one large made with Yew and another smaller made with Holly.

The magical sounds of all three weaved in perfectly into the drumming and vocals.

To honour World Vegan Day, 1 November, the date when the world’s first Vegan Society was founded in the UK in 1944, we included a Buddhist Precept “not to kill” into our Shamanic Intro.

Sandi on Shamanic Drum Sandi on Shamanic Drum

For Shamanic Intro, Sandi usually plays a Remo shamanic drum, Sarah – a bird…

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Incidentals will play at World Vegan Day Gig in Fielden Centre, Todmorden

See my frame drum band Incidentals, introducing Clare on Native American flutes at World Vegan Day Gig

Incidentals and Todmorden Frame Drum Group

WVegan day event posterIncidentals will perform at World Vegan Day Gig, Sat 1 November, Fielden Centre, Todmorden, at 9 pm. Food from 7 pm, live entertainment from 7.30 pm.

Entry £7.

We are excited to have a flute player Clare join Incidentals. Come to see her play enchanting Native American flutes to go with the drumming.

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Incidentals at Heptonstall Festival 2014: Photos

My frame drum band Incidentals played Heptonstall Festival 2014

Incidentals and Todmorden Frame Drum Group

Incidentals at Weavers Square Stage Incidentals at Weavers Square Stage

Here we are, Sandi on Shamanic Remo Buffalo Drum, Oxana on Komuz, and Sarah on whistle ready for our brand new Intro to our set.

Incidentals with a member of audience Incidentals with a member of audience

We have been overwhelmed by warm welcome from Festival Organisers, our compere and the sound engineers.

After we have finished playing, kind members of audience both adults and children took time to talk to us, asking questions about our drums.

– Is is a Bodhran?

– No, it’s not, it’s a frame drum.

Our younger spectators told us they were thinking of starting a band themselves.

We wish them best of luck!

Our set consisted of three instrumental pieces: OxanaAndSarahHeptonstall20092014

  • Reversals
  • Fusion
  • Circle Dance

And three pairs of folk songs:

  • two Russian
  • two Ukrainian and
  • two Macedonian

A member of the

Sandi with a frame drum bag Sandi with a frame drum bag

audience said that the voice and drums blended…

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See Incidentals at Heptonstall Festival, 20 Sep, 1 pm

See my women frame drum band Incidentals at Heptonstall Festival, 20 Sep, Sat, 1 pm

Incidentals and Todmorden Frame Drum Group

Incidentals will perform at

Heptonstall Festival on 20 September, Saturday, at 1 pm on Weaver Square stage, Heptonstall

For Visitor Information click here


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