Belarusian

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The Republic of Belarus, a landlocked country in Eastern Europe, has been under the dominance of several rulers over the past centuries with the result that its culture was often suppressed. But this could not dampen the spirit of modern day Belarusians in their determination to build a nation rich in the arts and culture. The nation has a diverse population comprising people of Belarusian ethnicity, Russians, Jews, Poles, and Vikings. The 20th century artist Marc Chagall who was associated with several major artistic styles, was referred to as "the quintessential Jewish artist of the twentieth century" by art critic Robert Hughes.

Vote For Your Favourite Belarusian Personality
 1 
Marc Chagall
(Jewish-French Artist Who was a Pioneer of Modernism)
Marc Chagall
8
Birthdate: July 6, 1887
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Lizona, Belarus
Died: March 28, 1985

Russian-French artist Marc Chagall, a key figure of modernism, had explored a wide range of media as an artist, from paintings and drawings to stained glass and ceramics. His major projects included the ceiling of the Paris Opéra, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Jerusalem Windows of Israel.

 2 
Olga Korbut
(Soviet Former Gymnast and Olympic Gold Medalist)
Olga Korbut
4
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: May 16, 1955
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Grodno, Belarus

Olga Korbut is a former gymnast who represented the Soviet Union in two Olympic Games, winning four gold medals and two silver medals. Nicknamed the Sparrow from Minsk, Korbut also participated in the 18th Artistic Gymnastics World Championships where she won two gold medals and four silver medals. In 1988, she was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame. 

 3 
Svetlana Alexievich
(Journalist, Essayist & Oral Historian - The Winner of 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature)
Svetlana Alexievich
3
Birthdate: May 31, 1948
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine

Nobel Prize-winning Belarusian journalist and oral historian Svetlana Alexievich is known for her signature documentary-style novels, which mingle fiction and reporting. Her five-part Voices of Utopia mirrored the lives of people in the Soviet Union. With her writing, she often criticizes the governments of Belarus and the Soviet Union.

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 4 
Svetlana Boginskaya
(Former Artistic Gymnast for the Soviet Union and Belarus)
Svetlana Boginskaya
8
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 9, 1973
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Known as the Belarusian Swan, Svetlana Boginskaya started off as a figure skater before moving on to gymnastics at age 6. By 14, she was part of the Soviet national gymnastics team. The three-time Olympic champion is now settled in Texas and owns businesses that provide gymnastics camps and apparel.

 5 
Gary Vaynerchuk
(Entrepreneur)
Gary Vaynerchuk
10
Listed In: Business People
Birthdate: November 14, 1975
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Babruysk
Gary Vaynerchuk is a Belarusian-American internet entrepreneur who co-founded the restaurant-reservation app Resy and the winery Empathy Wines, apart from launching the YouTube webcast Wine Library TV. He has chaired VaynerX, been the CEO of the social-media consulting firm VaynerMedia, and authored several books, including a business bestseller. 
 6 
Vitaly Scherbo
(Belarusian Former Artistic Gymnast and 4-Time Olympic Bronze Medalist)
Vitaly Scherbo
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 13, 1972
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Retired Belarusian artistic gymnast Vitaly Scherbo became the only male gymnast to win a world title in all 8 events. He has also won 6 gold medals in the Olympics and was the first person to win 4 gold medals in one day. The Scherbo vault has been named after him.

 7 
Louis B. Mayer
(Canadian-American Film Producer Who Co-Founded Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer)
Louis B. Mayer
19
Birthdate: July 12, 1884
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Dymer, Kiev Governorate, Russian Empire [now Vyshhorod Raion, Kiev Oblast, Ukraine]
Died: October 29, 1957
 8 
Boris Gelfand
(Chess player)
Boris Gelfand
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: June 24, 1968
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Legendary Soviet chess player Boris Gelfand is known for being part of the world’s top 20 players for most of his life. His accomplishments include two Belarusian national titles and a Chess World Cup. An author, too, he has co-written books such as Positional Decision Making in Chess.

 9 
Dasha Nekrasova
6
Birthdate: February 19, 1991
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus
 10 
Andrei Arlovski
(Belarusian-American Professional Mixed Martial Artist and Former UFC Heavyweight Champion)
Andrei Arlovski
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 4, 1979
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Babruysk, Belarus

Andrei Arlovski, also known as “The Pitbull,” is a Belarusian MMA fighter who is known for his UFC Heavyweight Championship win. He has also appeared in films such as Universal Soldier: Regeneration and been part of shows such as MTV's Bully Beatdown. He has competed for Strikeforce and Affliction, too.

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 11 
Galina Lukashenko
(First Lady)
Galina Lukashenko
1
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: January 1, 1955
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Byelorussian SSR, Soviet Union
 12 
Maria Kalesnikava
0
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: April 24, 1982
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Minsk, Byelorussian SSR, Soviet Union (now Belarus)
 13 
Aliaksandra Sasnovich
(Belarusian Professional Tennis Player)
Aliaksandra Sasnovich
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: March 22, 1994
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

The daughter of a basketball player mother and a hockey and tennis player father, Aliaksandra Sasnovich began playing tennis at age 9. She reached the 2019 US Open semi-finals and has had a career-best singles ranking of 30. She was banned from Wimbledon in 2022, following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

 14 
Krystsina Tsimanouskaya
(Belarusian Sprinter Who Took Refuge in Poland after Criticizing Her Team in 2020 Summer Olympics)
Krystsina Tsimanouskaya
5
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: November 19, 1996
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Klimavichy, Belarus

Belarusian sprinter Krystsina Tsimanouskaya has won several titles and medals, including 2 European Games silver medals and a Summer Universiade gold medal. During the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, she accused her team officials of forcing her to participate in an event and later took refuge in Poland to avoid action against her.

 15 
Ilya Ivashka
(Belarusian Tennis Player Who Is Currently the Number One Singles Player in His Country)
Ilya Ivashka
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 24, 1994
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Belarusian tennis player Ilya Ivashka has had a career-high singles ranking of 40 and is currently the number 1 singles player in his country. He was part of the group of Belarusian and Russian players who were banned by Wimbledon in 2022, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

 16 
Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya
(Belarusian Educator and Politician)
Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya
6
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: September 11, 1982
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Mikashevichy, Byelorussian SSR, Soviet Union (now Belarus)

Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya is a Belarusian educator and politician. Best known as the leader of the democratic movement in Belarus, Tsikhanouskaya ran in the presidential elections in 2020. Since August 2020, Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya has been living in exile in Poland. She has been twice nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for leading non-violent challenges against Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko.

 17 
Léon Bakst
(Painter)
Léon Bakst
1
Birthdate: January 27, 1866
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Grodno, Belarus
Died: December 28, 1924

Léon Bakst was a Russian painter, costume designer, and scene designer of Belarusian origin. He worked closely with the Ballets Russes, where he designed richly colored, exotic costumes and sets. His best-known works include productions like Daphnis and Chloe, Spectre de la rose, and The Sleeping Princess. In 1914, he was made a member of the Russian Academy of Arts.  

 18 
Phil Chess
(Record producer)
Phil Chess
0
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: March 27, 1921
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Motol, Belarus
Died: October 18, 2016
 19 
Andrei Gromyko
(Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet from 1985 to 1988)
Andrei Gromyko
2
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: July 18, 1909
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Starye Gromyki, Belarus
Died: July 2, 1989

Son of a Belarusian farmer, Andrei Gromyko grew up studying agriculture. He had already started delivering anti-religious speeches by 13 and later joined the Communist Party. He later served as the Soviet foreign minister and then the head of state, becoming popular as Mr. Nyet for vetoing UN proposals often.

 20 
Vitaly Shishov
(Activist)
Vitaly Shishov
0
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: 1995 AD
Birthplace: Rechytsa, Belarus
Died: August 3, 2021
 21 
Tatiana Navka
(Ice dancer)
Tatiana Navka
0
Listed In: Dancers
Birthdate: April 13, 1975
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Dnipro, Ukraine

Popular Russian figure skater Tatiana Navka has not just won the national and European championships thrice but is also a two-time world champion and an Olympic gold medalist. She is also a regular participant on various TV and ice shows and has her own show named the Navka Show.

 22 
Paul Baran
(Engineer)
Paul Baran
0
Listed In: Engineers
Birthdate: April 29, 1926
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Grodno, Belarus
Died: March 26, 2011
 23 
Veronika Tsepkalo
0
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: September 7, 0000
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Mahilioŭ, Belarussian SSR, Soviet Union
 24 
Alla Kliouka
(Actress)
Alla Kliouka
0
Birthdate: February 18, 1970
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus
 25 
Maalik Wayns
(Former American-Belarusian Basketball Player and Coach)
Maalik Wayns
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: May 2, 1991
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

American-Belarusian former basketball player Maalik Wayns played for Roman Catholic High School of Philadelphia during his high-school days. He selected Villanova University to play under coach Jay Wright during college-years. As a professional, Wayns played with several teams, including Philadelphia 76ers and presently serves as coach at St. Joseph's Preparatory School.

 26 
Alexey Ignashov
(Belarusian Kickboxer and 4-Time Muay Thai World Champion)
Alexey Ignashov
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 18, 1978
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Nicknamed The Red Scorpion, Belarusian heavyweight kickboxer and retired mixed martial artist Alexey Ignashov has won the Muay Thai World Championship 4 times. He trained at the Chinuk Gym for over a decade and is now based in Auckland, New Zealand. He is known for his signature knee strikes.

 27 
Artsiom Parakhouski
(Belarusian Professional Basketball Player Who Plays at the Center Position)
Artsiom Parakhouski
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: October 6, 1987
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Minsk, Byelorussian SSR, Soviet Union

Belarusian professional basketball-player Artsiom Parakhouski became Big South Player of the Year twice and NCAA rebounding leader once during his college-career. He commenced his professional career in 2010 and achieved several feats playing for different teams. These include winning King Mindaugas Cup Finals (2019) with Rytas Vilnius and becoming King Mindaugas Cup MVP; and winning ABA League Supercup (2019) with Partizan.  

 28 
Ivan Baranchyk
(Belarusian Boxer & Former IBF Light-Welterweight Champion (2018 - 2019))
Ivan Baranchyk
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 24, 1993
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Amursk, Russia

Ivan Baranchyk is a Belarusian boxer best known for his IBF light-welterweight title reign from 2018 to 2019. He won the vacant title by defeating Sweden's Anthony Yigit via corner retirement. Nicknamed The Beast, Ivan Baranchyk was ranked the fourth-best active light-welterweight in the world by BoxRec and The Ring in 2020.

 29 
Andrei Aramnau
(Belarusian Weightlifter Who is a Olympic and World Champion)
Andrei Aramnau
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: April 17, 1988
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Barysaw, Belarus

Belarusian weightlifter Andrei Aramnau is not just an Olympic champion but also has a World Championship gold in his kitty. Born with 6 fingers on one hand, which he believed was due to the Chernobyl disaster, he had to cut his 6th finger at age 14 to compete professionally.

 30 
Emad Khashoggi
(Businessperson)
Emad Khashoggi
0
Listed In: Business People
Birthdate: March 25, 1968
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Beirut, Lebanon
 31 
Natasha Zvereva
(Former Belarusian Tennis Player and Olympic Bronze Medalist)
Natasha Zvereva
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: April 16, 1971
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Belarusian former tennis-player Natallia Zvierava, counted among the best doubles-players of all-time, won 18 Grand Slam doubles-titles, including six at French Open; five at Wimbledon, four at US Open and three at Australian Open. She attained World No.1 doubles ranking in October 1991. Zvierava also won two mixed-doubles title at Australian Open and bronze in doubles at the 1992 Olympics.

 32 
Evgeny Morozov
(American Writer, Intellectual, and Researcher of Belarusian Origin)
Evgeny Morozov
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: 1984 AD
Birthplace: Salihorsk

Evgeny Morozov is an American writer, intellectual, and researcher from Belarus. He is best known for conducting studies and research into the social and political implications of technology. His writings have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers, including The New York Times and The Guardian. In 2018, Evgeny Morozov was included in the most influential Europeans list published by Politico.

 33 
Chaim Soutine
(Belarusian Painter Who Made a Major Contribution to the Expressionist Movement)
Chaim Soutine
0
Birthdate: January 13, 1893
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Smilavichy, Belarus
Died: August 9, 1943

Chaim Soutine was a Belarussian painter who lived and worked in Paris. Best remembered for his contribution to the expressionist movement, Soutine served as a bridge between the growing form of Abstract expressionism and more traditional approaches. Today, many of his paintings are preserved at places like The Jewish Museum in New York. 

 34 
Zinaida Kupriyanovich
4
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: September 17, 2002
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus
 35 
Melitina Staniouta
(Belarusian Retired Individual Rhythmic Gymnast)
Melitina Staniouta
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: November 15, 1993
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Melitina Staniouta is a Belarusian former individual rhythmic gymnast. She represented Belarus in World Championships and European Championships where she won many silver and bronze medals. Melitina Staniouta is perhaps best known for winning two gold medals at the 2013 World Games in Cali, Colombia.

 36 
Siarhei Liakhovich
(Belarusian Boxer & 2006 WBO Heavyweight Champion)
Siarhei Liakhovich
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: May 29, 1976
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Viciebsk, Belarus

Siarhei Liakhovich is a Belarusian boxer best known for his WBO heavyweight title reign in 2006. He is also known for representing his country at the 1997 World Championships where he won the bronze medal in the super heavyweight category.

 37 
Katsiaryna Halkina
(Retired Belarusian Rhythmic Gymnast Who Has Won Several World and European Championship Medals)
Katsiaryna Halkina
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 25, 1997
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Retired Belarusian rhythmic gymnast Katsiaryna Halkina has won numerous medals, including 4 silver medals at both the World and European Championships. At the 2016 Rio Olympics, she had scored 6th in the individual all-around final. Post-retirement, she moved to Moscow, where she joined a master’s degree.

 38 
Katya Zharkova
0
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: October 30, 1981
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus
 39 
Chingiz Allazov
(Belarusian Kickboxer and Former K-1 Super Welterweight Champion Presently Signed With ‘ONE Championship’)
Chingiz Allazov
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: June 10, 1993
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Gardabani, Georgia

Belarusian kick-boxer Chingiz Allazov has so-far achieved a kickboxing record of 59 wins out of 65, of which 36 wins were secured through knockout. He became the 2017 K-1 World GP -70kg World Tournament Champion and successfully defended the title in 2018. Presently signed with ONE Championship, Allazov is ranked as the #3 lightweight in the world by Combat Press.

 40 
Leonid Taranenko
(Former Soviet/Belarusian Weightlifter, Coach and Olympic Gold Medalist)
Leonid Taranenko
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: June 13, 1956
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Malaryta, Belarus

Leonid Taranenko is a former weightlifter and coach. He is best known for winning the gold medal in the 110 kg category at the 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow where he represented the Soviet Union. He also won gold medals at the World Weightlifting Championships, European Weightlifting Championships, and USSR Weightlifting Championships.

 41 
Masha Bruskina
0
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: 1924 AD
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus
Died: October 26, 1941
 42 
Gytha of Wessex
(Princess)
Gytha of Wessex
0
Birthdate: 1053 AD
Birthplace: Unknow
Died: 1098 AD
 43 
Max Korzh
(Singer-songwriter)
Max Korzh
0
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: November 23, 1988
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Luninets, Belarus
 44 
Sergey Rabchenko
(Belarusian Boxer Who Competes in the Light Middleweight Division)
Sergey Rabchenko
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 23, 1986
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Sergey Rabchenko is a Belarusian boxer who competes in the light middleweight division. After making his professional debut in 2006, Rabchenko went on to secure victories over well-known fighters like Bradley Pryce, Cédric Vitu, and Ryan Rhodes. Over the years, Sergey Rabchenko has won important titles like WBC Silver Light Middleweight title and EBU Light Middleweight title.

 45 
Natalia Podolskaya
0
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 20, 1982
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Mogilev, Belarusian SSR, USSR
 46 
Maryna Linchuk
(Belarusian Model)
Maryna Linchuk
0
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: September 4, 1987
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Maryna Linchuk is a Belarusian model who came into prominence after appearing in advertisements for popular brands like Dolce & Gabbana, Versace, Dior, and Escada. Renowned for her association with Vogue, Linchuk was named in Vogue Paris' top 30 models of the 2000s list. She has also walked the ramp for designers like Gucci, Prada, Michael Kors, and Louis Vuitton.

 47 
Rogneda of Polotsk
0
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: 0962 AD
Birthplace: Polatsk, Belarus
Died: 1002 AD
 48 
Aleksandr Kurlovich
(Soviet Weightlifter and 1988 Olympic Gold Medalist)
Aleksandr Kurlovich
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: July 28, 1961
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Grodno, Belarus
Died: April 6, 2018

Aleksandr Kurlovich was a Soviet weightlifter best remembered for winning a gold medal at the 1988 and 1992 Olympic Games. He also won gold medals at World Weightlifting Championships, European Weightlifting Championships, and USSR Weightlifting Championships. Aleksandr Kurlovich, who set 12 world records during his career, was inducted into the International Weightlifting Federation Hall of Fame in 2006.

 49 
Kiryl Relikh
(Belarusian Boxer and Former WBA Super Lightweight Champion (2018 - 2019))
Kiryl Relikh
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: November 26, 1989
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Baranovichi, Belarus

Nicknamed Mad Bee, Belarusian boxer Kiryl Relikh has previously been a WBA super lightweight title holder. In 2017, he lost to Cuban boxer Rances Barthelemy after a controversial unanimous decision in an extremely close fight. In 2020, he became the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board’s global fifth-best active super lightweight boxer.

 50 
Josef Gingold
(Violinist)
Josef Gingold
1
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: October 28, 1909
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Brest, Belarus
Died: January 11, 1995

Chaïm Soutine, a painter of Belarusian Jewish origin made a major contribution to the expressionist movement while living in Paris. The country has also produced some fine writers such as Guillaume Apollinaire who is considered one of the foremost poets of the early 20th century and Mendele Mocher Sforim who was one of the founders of modern Yiddish and Hebrew literature. The Belarusian physicist Zhores Ivanovich Alferov invented the heterotransistor and was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics. This section provides you information about the life and works of famous Belarusians.