FIFA World Cup ambassador Victoria Lopyreva and fashion designer Igor Gulyaev will both be attending

One of the best parts about living in Dubai is getting to interact with a wide mix of people, giving us the chance to learn about different cultures that we might never get access to back in our home countries.

Running from Tuesday, May 2 until Saturday, May 5, the third-annual Matryoshka Festival offers one such opportunity to take a deep dive into the history and heritage of Russia when it gets underway tomorrow at City Walk in Al Wasl.

The Festival takes its name from the famous wooden nesting dolls, and promises to transform the iconic outdoor shopping complex into a fairytale setting, bringing together some of the most exciting aspects of Russian design, art, fashion, sport and cuisine.

There will be lots to keep Russian-natives and those curious about the culture entertained, including performances by prima ballerinas from the Mariinsky Theatre of St Petersburg and contemporary acts like Bis-Quit and Irakli, as well as fashion displays, light shows and a 3D art installation.

A huge marketplace, or Yarmarka (see, you’re learning something already), will be erected, where UAE-based Russian vendors can peddle their wares. To further add a lochal twist, Dubai Police will showcase a gallery of exotic cars, as well as perform a repertoire of Russian and Emirati music at the grand opening on May 3.

You’re even bound to spot a celebrity or two. Fashion designer Igor Gulyaev will be on hand to show off his latest collection on Friday, while former Miss Russia and FIFA World Cup Ambassador Victoria Lopyreva will be promoting the upcoming footie tournament scheduled to kick off in Moscow next month.

The Matryoshka Festival seems like the next best thing to hopping on a plane and actually visiting Russia first hand. We can’t wait to head down and get stuck in.

City Walk, Al Wasl, 2 to 5 May, All-day, Free. Tel: (800) 637 227.

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