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Donation Campaign for Replacement Equipment

Dear Friends and Listeners,

The Mark in Russia podcast has been a project of mine for about 5 years now. While you may not agree with my views expressed in all of my episodes, I appreciate the fact that you listen to them and I hope to take things up a notch during the coming year in terms of production quality. To this end I’ve taken 4 different online audio storytelling courses with Duke University in South Carolina. This means that once or twice a week I’m awake in order to participate in class from 3:00 A.M. till 5:00 A.M. Chelyabinsk time. I’ve put some of my new pieces here and also on a new site of mine at

Recently I took a fall on an icy street here in Chelyabinsk and unfortunately severely damaged my primary interview recorder, also damaging, but not destroying my favorite interview microphone.

This podcast is my hobby; I make absolutely no money from it, nor have I ever requested money for doing it.

Between equipment costs, website and education costs I spend about $2000 a year on my hobby.

This podcast is, and always will be free for you to listen to, but perhaps if you feel that you get something useful from it, I’d like to try to raise about $950 total to replace my recorder and also to get a new microphone, actually a bit better sounding than the one that I’m currently using.

Look, for those of you who are seeing this at the “Mark’s Place” website and are new listeners, I don’t want you to think that begging for money is a regular feature here, this is actually a first and if you are new, I don’t expect you to help out.

With the donations, I hope to buy this recorder: and this new microphone:

If you can help me towards my goal, I’ll also give you personal thanks for your help during my actual podcast episode and list you here on my site as a donor.

Please use the Paypal button here and even if you don’t have a Paypal account, you can still pay using your debit card or credit card.



Mark Kelleher


Russia’s August Curse

August Curse

What many in the West think of as the “Dog Days of Summer”, is better known in Russia as the August Curse.

Listen to the Episode............. (00:07:32)
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Kick back and listen to some memories as told by a couple of Russians.


On the Boris Nemtsov Murder

Boris Nemtsov

On February 27th 2015, Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov was gunned down just a stones throw from the Kremlin. The following interviews were done within days of the murder, but only now did I have the opportunity to put them all together.

. Rather than just talk about what happened, I prefer to concentrate on the reporting as heard in the U.S.

Listen to the Episode............. (00:09:34)
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Russia Headlong into 2015

Russian new year

This is the second installment of my series showing the effects of sanctions and the true feelings of Russians during these politically charged times. I don’t pretend, like NPR and all other liberal outlets to be unbiased, so kindly don’t try to point out that I’m biased, perhaps better to say that I’m honest.

This episode will start with the annual New Year’s greeting to the Russian people from

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their President. It is long, about 4 minutes total, the speech I mean, but it makes for good comparison to speeches that spill diarrheally (Hey look, I just invented a new word!) from the Great Leader Obama’s mouth during his long Castro like speeches. Of particular note is an almost total absence of “I”, “me” and “mine” from the speech and the inclusion of references to love of country. These of course are the opposite of what Americans have to bear with when and if they listen to the Great Leader.

After the New Years address to the Russian people, I’ll insert a number of interviews with just regular Russians as they speak of their hope and fears for the year of 2015. Although I wouldn’t call this compelling radio storytelling, I do call it a story that should be heard.

Oh, by the way, hatred towards Obama does not mean love of Putin, so all of you Obama sycophants can shove that thought up your asses.

Well, let’s listen:

A little culture lesson here; for many Russians, it’s a tradition to write down their New Years wishes on a piece of paper as the clock starts striking midnight, burning the paper, putting the ashes in their champagne glasses along with champagne and drinking it as the final stroke of midnight tolls on the Kremlin clock tower.



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Grandpa and the Bomb




My Father-in-law was born and raised in the former Soviet Union. He was born the year after World War II ended, 1946.

Unfortunately he passed away early in 2015 and will be sorely missed by his family and his granddaughters. We were fortunate enough to get a few of his “when I was a boy” stories on audio and we only wish we had started this project earlier and had more audio of him relating his childhood.

As a guy who was born and grew up in the U.S. I was constantly fascinated at the stark contrast of being a kid in the post-war USSR and that of the post-war USA. Here is one of the matter of fact stories he related to us.

I can say that I’m happy that my daughters will be able to listen to this story and pass it on to their children. There is a lot to be said about recording family history.

Enjoy the story!


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Russian Sanctions from the point of view of Russians


This is the first in what I hope to be a series of everyday life in Russia for Russians during this turbulent time of sanctions and political conflict with the West.

Listen to the Episode............. (00:06:28)
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24-hour Radio Race – Virtuous Immigration

Back in the early Fall of 2014 I decided on a whim to enter a 24-hour radio production competition. In this contest, you and your team had 24-hours to produce a radio piece based upon a theme expression given at the very start of the 24-hour period.

There were hundreds of entrants from all over the world who took place in this and most were part of a team. I acted solo and actually only had about 12 hours to do my piece because the theme was announced about [11:00] P.M. my local Russian time; a little late to be out gathering interviews.

The theme was, “You Should Know” and the finished piece could not exceed 4 minutes in length. I did not win at all because frankly, there were better pieces than mine, but I had no illusions of winning, since this was a Public radio station. Before the contest started to me anyhow, I knew that the only way to win this contest would be to cover the favorite themes of the NPR crowd such as gay marriage, transgenderism and so forth. Mine covered the drawbacks to the poor law abiding immigrant during a time when uneducated illegal immigrants are felt to possess so much more virtue than regular citizens. Well, I never claim to make unbiased pieces.

By the way, my beforehand guess in terms of what types of pieces would win were 100% correct. It’s tough being right all of the time.

In any place though, I enjoyed the stress and rush of trying to develop and produce a piece in such a short time.

Listen to the Episode............. (00:04:10)
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