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Killing the Silence: A Concert for Ukraine: Special Guests Chorus Dumka
September 10, 2023 @ 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm EDT$25 – $30
Concert to benefit Ukraine Children’s Action Project, featuring Ukrainian composers and music that reflects the country’s very vibrant and vital culure.
Vasyl Barvinsky was one of the first Ukrainian composers to achieve international acclaim. As a member of the Ukrainian intelligentsia he was arrested by the Soviet authorities in 1948 and sentenced to 10 years in the Gulag. Many of his works were destroyed. Our program features the third movement of his dramatic “ Love “ cycle for solo piano, entitled “Fight, Pain the Victory of Love”.
Valentyn Sylvestrov writes in a post-modern musical style, using traditional tonal and modal techniques to create a delicate fantasy-world with an intense emotional impact. He said of his art, “I do not write new music. My music is a response to and an echo of what already exists.”
Leo Ornstein was born in Kremenchuk, (now Ukraine) in 1895, and came to the Lower East side as an 11 year old piano prodigy. His family were refugees from the pogroms incited by the antisemitic nationalistic organization, “Union of the Russian People.” He grew up to be recognized as a world-class pianist and an adventurous and audacious composer, pioneer of the tone-cluster.
Sergei Bortkiewicz was born in Kharkov in 1877, but lost the family estate his mother and sister to the Bolsheviks and the Red Army invasion. He spent much of his life as a refugee, later to the Nazis, undergoing extreme hardships and financial difficulties. Nevertheless he produced a remarkable body of work, writing in the grand romantic tradition of beautiful melodies and rich harmonies.
The Bowers-Fader Duo explore Ukraine’s rich folk music tradition with a set of songs for mezzo and guitar.
Composer and violinist Andrii Didorenko uses folk material in his “Postcards from Ukraine,” performed with his wife the pianist Yuliya Basis.
We are proud to present the the members of Ukrainian Chorus Dumka, fresh from performances in Carnegie Hall and on Saturday Night Live.
The Ukrainian Chorus Dumka of New York was established in 1949 as a male chorus by Ukrainians who escaped from the oppression and terror of the Soviet regime. The name comes from the Ukrainian word dumka, which translates to thought, and duma, a form of epic folk song that originated in Ukraine in the 16th century. The founders of this vocal ensemble sought to preserve and cultivate the rich secular and sacred musical heritage of Ukraine. In 1959, Dumka became a mixed chorus allowing them to expand their repertoire. Their musical library includes over 400 works from Ukrainian composers, as well as many western composers. Since its inception, the chorus has performed concerts at Alice Tully Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. Dumka sings annual Christmas concerts at St. Patrick's Cathedral in NYC. The chorus has also performed across Ukraine and other European countries as well as in several cities in The United States.
Dumka appeared as a musical guest on Saturday Night Live, in February 2022 singing Prayer for Ukraine. The chorus has been invited to dozens of venues to represent the culture of Ukraine through the performance of beautiful secular and sacred music, while raising awareness and relief funds to support the people of Ukraine. In August 2022, Dumka performed at the opening ceremonies of the U.S. Open Tennis Tournament at Arthur Ashe Stadium singing One Moment In Time.
The members of The Ukrainian Chorus Dumka of NY are honored to continue serving the community, through broadening and cultivating the music from its native land. Since 1991, Dumka has performed under the direction of Vasyl Hrechynsky.
“As far as I am concerned, romanticism is not the bloodless intellectual commitment to a program, but the expression of my most profound mind and soul.” — Serii Bortkiewi
- Vasyl Barvinsky
- Leo Ornstein
- Andrii Didorenko
- Serii Bortkiewicz