Ukrainian “Muses” in Germany

03.12.2022
Description

The international project “European Muses Are Not Silent: symposium, workshop, musical residency” took place in Cologne.

Organized by the ZamusZentrum für Alte Musik Köln and the Lviv National Philharmonic, it was supported by the Goethe Institute Ukraine, Culture Connects and the Ernst von Siemens Musikstiftung.

The history of the project dates back to March 2022, when a large-scale series of online and offline concerts “Ukraine-2022. Muses Are Not Silent” started. As the art director of the project, Bohdan Sehin, noted at the press conference on the occasion of the presentation of the results of the German-Ukrainian partnership, “Ukrainian musicians began to look for opportunities for self-realization from the first weeks, and after about a month they began to resume their professional activities.” The XIX Lviv Early Music Festival was also a trigger for such a creative collaboration. During August members of the world-renowned ensemble “Sequentia”, Norbert Rodenkirchen and Benjamin Bagby came to Ukraine.

Read more about the project

After all, in this way a centre was established in Lviv, which contributed to the continuation of the creative activity of artists, and also gave hope for the future. Anna Ivaniushenko reflected on the new circumstances from the pedagogical and artistic point of view: “It was during these times that I noticed that students began to appreciate things that they usually did not pay attention to. When we have an air raid alarm, we have to stop rehearsals, but we look forward to continuing because music saves us.” What’s more, during more than 60 concerts of the project, music from different eras was played, and three large-scale festivals of ancient, and contemporary music and works from the classical-romantic period were held. This experience was transferred to the new international cooperation. You can listen to the whole music program from the studio in Cologne via the link:

 

Among the Ukrainian artists are instrumentalists Hanna Ivaniushenko (Lviv National Philharmonic), Nazarii Stets (National Soloists Ensemble “Kyiv Camerata”), Dmytro Hub’yak (Ternopil Volodymyr Hnatiuk National Pedagogical University), vocalist Roman Melish (National House of Music), and composer, manager, the artistic director of the many projects in the Lviv National Philharmonic, Bohdan Sehin. The Ukrainian Nataliia Neshmonina joins the ensemble from Essen, Germany.

In the project, which lasted from November 29 to December 2, the musicians aimed to present, in particular, the ancient Ukrainian baroque and the modern music scene. Therefore, Dmytro Hub’yak remarked: “The national Ukrainian bandura instrument combined ancient culture and modern influences.” Dmytro talked about different types of banduras and shared his impression of the 4-day trip: “It was a new look into my instrument’s possibilities.”

On December 1, the musicians held a workshop where they recorded four musical sets. This is how Nazarii Stets responded: “When I received the invitation to the project, I expected that I would play mostly basso continuo. But I also had other important roles: improvisation (a great pleasure) and presenting the solo possibilities of the double bass.” See more about the results and artists’ vision of their role during the war in Ukraine in the video:

The musicians expressed special gratitude to Norbert Rodenkirchen, a German flautist and composer, thanks to whom the process of cooperation between the German and Ukrainian institutions became possible and was carefully organized. All participants in the musical and cultural process confirmed that “such international projects inspire and provide an opportunity for professional growth” (Anna Ivaniushenko). Bohdan Sehin also said that thanks to this year’s successful result, the Lviv Early Music Festival will surely be filled with new musical collaborations in the next anniversary year.

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