Interrupt This Program

How Interrupt This Program filmed a secret protest on the Moscow Subway without getting caught

While shooting this Sunday's premiere, the crew was constantly aware of the tense feeling of always being watched by the state.

In a city where you feel watched all the time, artists risk their own freedom for justice

While shooting this Sunday's premiere of Interrupt This Program in Moscow, the production team was constantly aware of the tense feeling of always being watched by the state. They went through official channels to get permits to shoot but didn't say who they were filming, since they were often working with artists who Putin's Russia considers enemies — such as Pussy Riot's Masha Alekhina, who was previously imprisoned by the Russian state for her activism.

However, they couldn't get permission to shoot everywhere, including the Moscow subway. Watch the video above to see how the crew secretly shot a "quiet protest" by poets Daria and Sasha, whose posters are meant to "induce reflection" on discrimination in Russia.

While this shoot carried risk for the Canadian production team, the risk for the Russian artists was much greater — and that's something they make part of their lives as activists. Sasha acknowledged this fear of serious consequences going in to the protest: "I am really nervous. I don't want to be imprisoned, and in Russia you can be imprisoned for almost everything."

See more of Sasha and Daria's protest on this Sunday's premiere of Interrupt This Program at 9pm, plus more stories of art resisting against oppression.

Art as political protest, as a means of survival, as an agent of change, as a display of courage and delight. Interrupt This Program explores art in cities under pressure.

Season 2 begins in Moscow on Feb. 5 at 9pm (9:30pm NT).

Watch Season 1 now streaming online with episodes from Beirut, Kiev, Port-au-Prince, Medellín and Athens.

Video edited by Geoff Klein.


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