Sad Drymba’s Sounds

Lyudkevych Concert Hall

Sunday 12.06.2022 / 18:00

Lyudkevych Concert Hall



The pieces to be performed this evening are separated by a long historical distance. The Sonata by Claude Debussy was created in 1915, the piece by Yevhen Stankovych in 1992, and the Sonata by Denys Lytvynenko in 2015. But what they all have in common is a complicated drama of the spirit: there are feelings, fears and sorrows, struggle and at the same time there is faith in the Light!

“When will the hatred finally cease?”, Claude Debussy wrote in 1916, during the First World War. His Sonata for Cello and Piano was premiered a year earlier. It was initially subtitled “Pierrot faché avec la lune” (“Pierrot is angry at the moon”), and in this composition, the French composer aimed to stylize the forms of French 17-18th-centuries sonatas and the presentative nature of the ancient Italian Commedia dell’arte masks.

In the Sonata, the representation of the cruel actions of war are opposed with delicate and fragile art, understood as wanting to emphasize that no guns can destroy porcelain.

Yevhen Stankovych’s piece “Sad Drymba’s Sounds” is based on Ukrainian archaic melos, successfully combined with contemporary compositional techniques. The music brings on the images of kobzar’s thoughtful recitation, the lyrics of the Ukrainian heroic epic duma and the magical sounds of the Ukrainian drymba.

Denys Lytvynenko, the composer and cellist, stated about his Cello Sonata, the final piece of the program:

“The first movement of the Sonata is a prayer under guns. It begins with a peaceful, beautiful land that has been covered in blood for centuries. In the beginning, there is a Ukrainian theme, later covered in chaos, war and sirens. There are also excerpts from the Soviet Union anthem. We will hear it in the piano part, and at this time the Lord’s prayer will be played by the cello…

The second movement, Toccata, represents the fight between musical themes described as “the machine for destroying nations” and “the eternal Ukrainian sense of humour”. Even in such difficult times, we try to find joyful moments. Here I used the Ukrainian folk song “I’ll go to find the mushrooms”. Also, as in the first part, Toccata has excerpts from the Soviet Union anthem. And yet, here the true light (the second theme) will overcome the darkness!

The third movement, Nocturne, expresses the author’s feelings about our beautiful Ukrainian land, our wonderful people. It is extremely melodic and bright. But suddenly, it is interrupted by a march, as the beginning of the final movement of the Sonata.

This is a march of Russian soldiers, based on the theme of the folk song “Hey, pour a full glasses”. But the melody of this song is changed to the sounding of a Soviet march. This detail is the embodiment of the well-known fact that the Russians are constantly stealing everything from Ukrainians: songs, composers, artists and so on. Then the conflict begins again, resulting s in desolation, ruins… The Sonata ends with a cello cadence, born from the melody of “Oh, the Dream walks” lullaby”. 


  • Denys Lytvynenko, cello
  • Natalia Martynova, piano


Moderator – Polina Kordovska



  • Yevhen Stankovych (1942). “Sad Drymba’s Sounds” for cello and piano (1992)
  • Claude Debussy (1862-1918). Sonata for cello and piano in D minor (1915)
    • Prologue: Lent, sostenuto e molto risoluto
    • Sérénade: Modérément animé
    • Final: Animé, léger et nerveux
  • Denys Lytvynenko. Sonata for cello and piano in F-sharp minor “In memory of the victims of the genocide of the Ukrainian people” (2015)
    • Introduction
    • Toccata
    • Nocturne
    • Burlesque



“Ukraine–2022. Muses Are Not Silent” is a series of digital chamber concerts organized by Myroslav Skoryk Lviv National Philharmonic in support of Ukrainian musicians during the russian armed aggression. Online concerts will become a platform for the uniting of the Ukrainian music community, as many musicians participating in these concert programs have become internally displaced people and have found shelter in Lviv.

We provide a free opportunity for the whole world to watch concerts on the official YouTube channel of the Lviv National Philharmonic. At the same time, we suggest our listeners from abroad make charitable donations to Ukrainian musicians who have stayed here in Ukraine.


Bank details for charitable help.

It is a multi-currency account that accepts transfers in US dollars, euros and Polish zlotys.

Bank name:


Lviv branch

Address of bank:

Ukraine, 79000, Lviv, 4, A.Mitskevich sq.

BIC (SWIFT) code (Bank identifier code):


IBAN code (International Bank Account Number code):

UA07 322 313 00000 26 009 0000 40 819

Name of the account holder:


Address of the account holder

Ukraine, 79000, Lviv, 7 Tchaikovsky Str.

Purpose of payment:

Charitable help for musicians in Ukraine