Kultura #13 (16)
The Great Tenorís Formula of Life
Jose Carreras visiting Mendeleev Chemical University in Moscow
Famous tenor Jose Carreras is coming to Moscow to receive the honorary doctor certificate at the Mendeleev Chemical University. The ceremony is to take place on April 15.
Somebody who receives world recognition in a field of activity and has chemical education, or makes a great contribution to nature protection, has a chance to become a honorary doctor of the Moscow Chemical University. This title is conferred by the academic council once a year since 1993. Among the starís predecessors are Margaret Thatcher, Jacques Ives Cousteau, world famous scientists Dennis Meadows and Agni Arvanitis, the former Italian Minister of Higher Education and Scientific and Technological Research Umberto Colombo.
The University lets out one little known episode from Carrerasí biography. He did not complete his chemical education, but he still spent two years at the chemical faculty of the Barcelona University. As we can see now, it was not in vane.
The formal occasion apart, there is a far more important ground of the award Ė Mr. Carreras charitable activity. The singer helped victims of the earthquake in Spitak, he founded the International Leukemia Foundation, he is honorary patron of the European Medical Cancer Society.
The studentsí brass band and choir (both groups well known outside the Mendeleev University) will play and sing for him. Then he will be presented a certificate, a gown (by Vyacheslav Zaitsev), a medal and a splendin crystal bowl from Gus-Khrustalny (Russian town famous for its glassware factory Ė translatorís note) with his portrait. In reply he will give a half an hour talk on humanitarian problems. After the ceremony there will be a short concert: invited singers and the Defense Ministry Symphony Orchestra under Mr. Afanassyevís baton will perform arias from the newly made professorís repertoire.
According to Mr. Sarkissov, rector of the University, who gave us all the above information, Jose Carreras accepted the invitation with gladness. It was a great honor, he wrote. He even saved the organizers travel and hotel expenses.
This is how the Chemical University diversifies its social life and establishes international contacts. Almost all honorary doctors later participate in the Universityís life.
Mr. Carreras will not sing here this time. But our neighbors will soon hear him: from Moscow the newly made doctor is going on a concert tour to the Baltic states.
Translation Maria Kozlova