Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin may become a laureate of the first annual rap music award, Russian Street Awards. Participation of the head of the government in Muz-TV show “Fight for Respect: Start today!” is in the running for the title “the event of the year” in hip-hop, RIA Novosti reports.
During the show shot in November of 2009, street dancers, graffiti artists and rappers from all regions of Russia demonstrated their talents trying to prove that hip-hop and healthy lifestyle are compatible. Unexpectedly for many, Prime Minister Putin took part in the show by giving awards to the winners and expressing his support to rap and brake dance.
According to Putin, rap is filled with social meaning, and speaks about social and youth issues. Graffiti is becoming a form of art, and brake dance is propaganda of healthy lifestyle since it is hard to imagine that this complicated dance can be compatible with drugs and alcohol.
Later Putin was criticized for his desire to market himself to young crowd. Yet, during live call-in show with Russian people Putin explained that he wanted to attract attention to the issues of young people. “It has nothing to do with rating. Thanks God, we have no elections,” he said.
In any case, Putin’s meeting with the rappers impressed the community, and the organizational committee of Russian Street Awards decided to include it into the nomination “Event of the Year.” The event compares in its significance only to the breakup of Centr band and Hip-Hop City splash 2009 festival.
The first national award in hip-hop culture will take place on April 21 in Crocus City Hall in Moscow. The vote will continue until April 20.