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2010 Avtomat Grant Recipients

And the results are finally in…

This is our first grant and we had to make up the rules as we went along. The general idea however stayed the same, both judges and the popular voice got to select the best candidate. We did not expect such an overwhelming response from the audience supporting their grant recipients to be. We are thanking you all for taking part. As the voting and judging was coming to the close we have realized that one grant would not be enough to promote the Art that we all like and support. We decided to introduce secondary $250 grant to the most popular candidate. Based on all the votes the 2010 Avtomat Grant Recipients are:

$1000 – Alisa Apreleva-Trio CD Release !!!!!!!

And the secondary grant goes to:

$250 – Z-Exit Sergey Kuzmenko !!!!!

Congratulations to both recipients and good luck to all participants in your endeavors.

Stay tuned for 2011 Avtomat Grant.

Avtomat Productions

The breakdown of the votes:

(Top 3 Internet candidates have received 1 vote each)

Z-Exit ———–3
Ellina Graypel——4
Alisa Apreleva——5
Red Marines——-4
Alexander Alabin—1
Andrei Robakov—-1
Joseph Crescente—2

Here is what the judges had to say:

Eugene Kaminsky
President KABH



In addition to my just liking their music, I believe one of characteristics of true artists is their ability to reflect the reality in a creative way.  Based on that criterion, I feel that TTPOOM’s reflection of the cultural assimilation specifics experienced by our “wave” of immigration should be appreciated.

Red Marines 2010 Festival

I commend this project’s desire to blend good music with a fair cause of supporting our troops. The arts and the activism are often go hand to hand. Not always this cooperation is positive or reasonable. I feel that in case of this project, it’s a win-win.

Alexander Alabin

I truly appreciate artists who don’t give up their passion to the arts in face of tough everyday life. This artist is a genuine example of sticking to his creative calling despite all problems, not to mention that his blend of Russian poetry and various music traditions is truly promising.

Anna Simakova
Events Director
Global Advertising Strategies


Alisa Apreleva  – очень самобытно и интересно. Чем-то мне напомнило творчество Пелагеи. Я бы дала первое место. (very primitive and interesting. This has reminded me art of Pelagea. I would give this entry the first place*)

Andrei Robakov – понравился чистотой жанра – настоящий визуальный pop ))) (I liked his entry because of the clean genre – the real visual pop*)

Joseph Crescente- с большим уважением отношусь к американцев, пытающимся разобраться в сложных русских творческих душах, в частности в кинематографе. ( I have great respect for Americans trying to understand complex Russian artistic souls particularly the ones of cinematography*)

*Translation by Avtomat Productions

Alexander Zolotov,
ZARYA Executive board member.


When I look at people who aim to work in the field of art and music,  I distinguish two major categories. I am always impressed by the first one – these are the artists who really have something to tell the world, people who work hard to create their own unique and distinct style of art. The second category are the people who are mostly concerned with  publicity and often refer to easy and cheap means of copying other people’s art.

I strongly believe that it’s important to support the first type of artists so that public could see their true art and filter all the noise from pseudo-artists from the second category.  That is why I choose to support CD releases by Ellina Graypel and Alisa Apreleva.

I also would like to support “Red Marines” festival, not only because it’s a great festival that is organized by the artists themselves, but also because it has very honorable cause of supporting veterans and the environment.

So my choices are:

“Only the Sky” CD Release (Ellina Graypel)
APRELEVA-trio CD Release (Alisa Apreleva)
Red Marines 2010 Festival (Eugene Tarasov)

Tatyana Pastuhova
Art Soiree Co


“Only the Sky” CD Release

I believe that these three contestants are the most deserving of the award in the order mentioned. All three seem to be very serious of what they are doing and seem to be on the right track with promoting and incorporating Russian culture in what they do. Among the three I believe that TTPOOM being the youngest band would need the grant most to promote themselves. The two other contestants though already well established could use the money from the grant to further increase their presence in the American market and promote themselves. As per the other contestants they seemed to have lacked either the interest or the quality in the provided information.

Alexander Prokopyev

Session bass player for Noize MC. Many times opening act for Mumiy Troll, Lyapis Trubetskoy

1. APRELEVA-trio CD Release (Alisa Apreleva)
Stunning classic-folk experience concept, combined with professional performance. Lyrics that make you think. This music has a great future potential for cultural development. What else can I say… I like it!

2. Russian Cultural Producers in America (Joseph Crescente)
Russian culture for Americans is standing somewhat behind the curtains, depicted by years of differences in political views as bears on unicycle playing balalaika. Media is the most important part of regular person’s life to set his opinion about everything. I think it will show more of who we are, and I hope to see it come out soon.

3. Red Marines 2010 Festival (Eugene Tarasov)
One of the best get-together festivals, not limited to russian people and performers widely known in California. Colorful set of music genres, artists, collaborations and creativity under one roof. Massive!

Alexander Manilov



Speaking frankly, I really want this grant to help those artists who are trying to create something, to write songs, record albums and of course to perform. This money will have real meaning to them, meaning they will put the grant to the best use and I have based my decisions based on that philosophy.

Vladimir Shifrin

President, RussianMix.com


My vote (in order of priority — first – the highest)

1) Z-Exit (Sergey Kuzmenko)
2) TTPOOM (Eugene Tsimmerman)
3) Red Marines 2010 Festival (Eugene Tarasov)