Natalia Lyubchenko (Russia)
«At first, it's a festival. You're waiting for it like for New Year. New year for your professional discovery. This is a chance to "upgrade" yourself, reload, learn about something, that was hidden from you».
Toys for children of war were more than just toys, this is what helped them cope with the severity of the war years.

– How did you get the idea of «Blockade Teddy»?

– I was thinking about this theme for a long time. We usually talk about the war basing on stories, human fates or occasions, but…there are some things, those same toys, which contain incredible information flow. Why shouldn't we take a look around? Sometimes objects surrounding us can tell more than people. And toy's theme hasn't been chosen by chance – this is what was the most precious for blockade Leningrad children.
Film editor: MARIA GLEBOVA

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— How did you realize that your vocation is to be a TV-journalist?
— It was in my first year at High school. We were writing for local newspaper. And we were sent to the youth TV-studio. And it was there I filmed my first story - about the recruits. Nothing worked out, I remember, that I was crying and saying that I'd never work on TV. But I desired to prove the opposite to my teachers and my parents. And next week they gave me new task again – I went to the shooting...
— How did you find characters for you story?
— I surfed through whole Internet, read hundreds of stories. Producer Tatiana Dzen helped me with it. Every phone conversation with the heroines gave me such an energy, that even before arriving for shooting in Saint-Petersburg I realized – everything would work out. There will be the story!
— List your main professional achievements
— My main achievement is the possibility to "talk" to spectator. I've been on TV for 16 years, during ten of which I was working on regional TV. For the last six years I've been working on Channel One in the program "Good morning". And it never came to me to quit all through my career. It may sound populist, but it really makes sense. One can hardly distinguish work from life.
— Have you visited Saint-Petersburg before? Which emotions does this city awake in you?
— I visited Petersburg in 2013. It was "Dialogue of cultures" that introduced the city to me. This is one of my favorite cities. One wants to breathe, create, love here. Absolutely atmospheric place.
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