Recognise the voice in the BBC’s Russia propaganda?

June 22, 2018 by norman lebrecht


Who’s that singing Ochi Chornaya in the BBC’s World Cup promo?

Perfect Russian, with a Wagnerian timbre.


Comments (17)

  1. Jeremy Sams says:


    1. norman lebrecht says:


  2. Jeremy Walker says:

    Ochi Chorniye (Очи Чёрные), not ~aya

    1. norman lebrecht says:


      1. highwayroller says:

        Spasibo, not spaseba

        1. buxtehude says:

          Wrong, High. Спасибо may be written with a Russian O but it’s pronounced much closer to the Russian and English Ah because the accent doesn’t fall on it.

          1. steven holloway says:

            Spasiba. It’s really NL’s transliteration, the ‘e’ instead of ‘i’, that’s dodgy. The fault probably lies with wherever he got it from.

        2. buxtehude says:

          и always sounds as ee.

    2. Una says:

      Thanks for the Cyrillic we are all fluent in!

      1. buxtehude says:

        Actually it’s very easy to learn and helps one understand how Russian words and names ought to sound in English. Wish I was a Russian speaker too, but I’m not.

        1. Adrian Brett says:

          Try learning English first!! “I wish I WERE….” Subjunctive mood, expressing a wish or desire.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Must be John Tomlinson.

    1. KALINKA says:

      I thought exactly the same!

  4. Dennis says:

    I’m sure the BBC did similar promo spots for previous World Cups (and Olympics, etc). Why is this deemed “Russia Propaganda”? Just the fact that anything these days involving Russia brings out utter insanity among the media and political classes, who seem drenched in anti-Russia paranoia. Did you denounce the BBC’s “Brazil Propaganda” in 2014, or “South Africa propaganda” in 2010, etc?

    1. Rog says:

      Quite. It’s just a brilliant, pitch-perfect promo, made all the better by featuring our own John Tom.

    2. Kalinka says:

      Totally agree!!!

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