Match performance: the weapon or theatrical action?
The semantic level of investigation of any cultural objects as means of culturalinformation broadcast implies some analysis of the processes of giving these objects a certain meaning and understanding in different aspects of the social surroundings cultural organization. Dynamics of the up-to-date socio-cultural events is so mobile that the newest scientific investigations demonstrate transference of scientific interests from microhistorical and cross-cultural researches towards analyses of the current problems connected with the actual semantic aspects of the social relations monitoring. 
Among the social activity spheres appears to be the sport supporting world. In the globalizing social surroundings it is just the football that has become a game-symbol, means of the universal communication; hence the football fan movement has been formed as one among the most numerous subcultures.
You can hardly see some broadcasting from a football stadium without screaming fans, long banners of tribunes drawn with pyrotechnics‘ smoke. A football fan doesn‘t want to be a passive witness, he is longing for an active co-authorship, and his preparation and participation in the match performances has become evidence.
Performance as a form of the neo-avant-garde culture has been conceived as a show to be played only once, being something irreversible and inimitable. And hence this performance has to produce an indelible effect upon some collective or individual consciousness.
Performances organized by the football fans appear to be the show taking place on tribunes during a match. Such a performance includes the using of plates and small balls, different flags, banners, paper streamer, sound support, pyrotechnics, fire-show, module-show etc. The performance task is to support the team, to show the level of different fan-firms.
The performance semantics is of a polyvectorial character. There is the protest and elements of the fan culture as well as some creativity without which any performance will not be ―catch on‖, and therefore the peculiar action will be lost. As the fans themselves tell, the performance is not a weapon, but the matter of art, a theatrical action. The fans are trying to create and realized sport shows each following one becoming more grandious and colourful. It represents an important support for those who are on the field. The fan actions always produce an enormous effect upon the players.
In the XXI century tribunes of the world stadiums are often turned into an arena for expression of political and ideological views. National and patriotic moods, a spontaneous (or planning) reaction upon the foreign policy events (for example, conclusion of international agreements, active or passive participation of the state in regulation of the modern armed conflicts) and socio-economic situation in the country or some interpretation of the sport world events have been reflected in the Russian football fans actions on the stadium or its outside all over the world. So, it is of no wonder that the sport games vividly reflect some military semantics being especially ―headed‖ by press. Some sport commentaries remind reports from the war fields. There is no the notion of enemy in the sport language, but semantics of a more peaceful word – a rival is more and more often obtaining some negative connotation.
The fans especially manifest their military brotherhood during their –exits‖, being on the stadiums of their –principal‖ rivals, when they are –surrounded by their enemies‖ of the local club fans and the local forces of law and order.  Milan derby (–Inter‖ and –Milan‖ teams) is not only the principal duel of to historical rivals, but also the war of banners, the war of performances. For example, there appeared a rather provocative banner concerning Ronaldo being in the center of a sexual row (He decided to make out with to street walkers who turned out to be not girls at all).
When in January, 1994 the match in Liverpool ended with three to three draw, Liverpool fans spread the banner which read: ―Goodbye Canton and United. Come back having won eighteen titles‖. In 2009, fifteen year after when Manchester United won these eighteen titles, MU fans had completely taken the revenge: they appeared on Enfield in Eric‘s masks and in t-shirts of two types, one type was with the inscription: ―Eighteen titles and this is the fact‖, another type representing Michael Owen triumphing was inscribed: ―Welcome to Manchester!‖. 
The English fans have been trying for a long time to give up hooliganism connected with the football and to turn their support into a theatrical performance with songs, speeches, flags, banners, drum‘s sounds. Some Russian fan firms do not object to follow their way. The level of Russian Championship is lowly but rising and the football is becoming interesting as a performance. Moscow and Saint Petersburg are traditionally considered to be centers of the football fanaticism and of organizations of qualitative performances in Russia. The palm of priority concerning creativity in –choreography‖ (the using of banners) is given practically by all rivals to CSKA which is trying to make its banners like caricatures. ―Spartak‖ is distinguished by its mass character, while –Zenit‖ – by its fire-show (its pyrotechnic shows are the most intensive when more than 500 fires are often burnt). –Lokomotive‖ is characterized by the quality and European style. 
Significance of banners as components of the performances is immense because they evoke momentary responses and hence acutely influence. At the extreme situations the banners become sharp, poisonous, at the verge of all. So, the famous banner created before the game between CSKA and ―Spartak‖ has made history. It represented Slavolub Muslin on the horse, dressed in the armour of a Rome legionary. The writings ―Your eternal Rome‖ and ―You can‘t go away from Fate – victory or death‖ had to remind the opponents the sad fate of the gladiator who gave his name to their team. The figures on the sides signified the date of Spartak‘s death and the match date. This banner cost 10 thousand dollars and is considered now to be the most expensive banner in the whole history of the Russian football performance. The fans influence upon the team policy they support is becoming more active.
In 2004, for example, Spartak fans produced an indirect effect upon resignation of Andrey Chervichenko, the Club president. Dynamo fans also protested against their Club leadership because of the ticket high prices, the team weak play and its results. They use to come to Dynamo matches in t-shirts with inscription: –Take Zavarzin away!‖ As a result the ticket prices became much lower and the Club began to participate somehow in its fans life. –Zenit‖ occupies the first place concerning the number of all being made at the tribune. The Petersburg ultras often demonstrated shows using modules, paper streamer, flags, stripes, pyrotechnics, producing an inimitable atmosphere of a football holyday during home matches with filled up tribunes, unstopping roar of spectators, unceasing and well organized fans‘ song of –The Nevskiy Front‖ firm, sea of blue-white-light blue rosettes, hats, caps, shirts, jackets, flags, banners and transparent of all sizes.
Thus the performance as a phenomenon can express philosophical themes as well as social events and an individuality self-expression. Its functional purpose can hardly be overestimated within the limits of a definite cultural environment. We can slightly hope the match performances will change their war semantics into the holiday one that the Petersburg –Zenit‖ fans are trying to realize.
1. Banner‘s War. http://fanat1k.ru/print.php?news.4916
2. Kildushov О. About Two Cultures of Supporting. Some Far-going Conclusions in Connection with the Match Germany vs. England. http://www.russ.ru/pole/O-dvuh-kul-turah-boleniya
3. Culturology. XX Century. The Encyclopedia. The University Book – СПб., 1998
4. Russian Support. View and Estimation. http://www.fratria.ru
5. Fans‘ educational program: if you have made something not so well, the banner will tell you, who is who. http://www.l-oko.ru/article.653
6. Manchester United. Returning to Paganism.
Svetlana J. Averina
|Опубликовано 06.05.2020 21:39 | Просмотров: 124 | Блог » RSS|