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Ukrainian music performed at an international music festival

 

Horovas Lucky Break

Lesya Horova, a Ukrainian lyricist, composer and singer, was among many of those who performed on Maydan, the central square of Kyiv, during the Orange Revolution.

 

Recently Ms Horova and the Svitanok band were invited to come to the world-famous Edinburgh International Festival and Alnwick International Music Festival. Lesya Horova and Svitanok were given an enthusiastic reception. According to Ms Horova, all the Ukrainians are very special and that is why they are particularly captivating.

The ancient British town of Alnwick, whose castle saw the filming of many sequences in Harry Potter films, made a very strong impression on the Ukrainian singer. Before coming to Alnwick, Ms Horova heard stories about the town. They inspired her to pen a song about Alnwick and its festival. Eventually, the song composed in English, became an overnight hit and was performed nearly 30 times. It became a sort of an anthem of Alnwick and is often performed by the municipal orchestra. It is also heard on the radio as a signature tune.

Recently Ms Horova released a new album I Am a Patriot with 3 songs recorded in English.

Ms Horova has received a standing invitation to come to attend all the festivals to be held in Alnwick in the future; she has also been invited to come to enjoy the Day of Alnwick, which was held in June.

The singer, who liked Edinburgh too, has written a song about the city and is planning to record it soon.

 

By Yevhen BUDKO

Photos are from Lesya Horovas archive

 

Vesnyany Halas, or Vernal Vibrations

The Ukrainian rock group Vesnyany Halas was among the winners at this years Chervona Ruta Song Contest which was held in Kyiv.

 

Vesnyany Halas:

Valentyn Povoroznyk  vocals, guitar, percussion; Roman Panasyuk  lyrics, tambourine, maracas; Maksym Velychko  solo guitar; Dmytro Trifanov bass guitar; Maksym Didenko  drums.

Some of the previous achievements:

2nd prize at the Perlyny Sezonu Festival, Kyiv, 2000 (in the acoustic music nomination); 3rd place at the Chervona Ruta Song Contest (in the acoustic music nomination) in 2001; 2nd place at the Chervona Ruta Song Contest (in the rock music nomination) in 2003.

Vesnyany Halas have recorded twenty five songs some of which appear on the album Vesnyan. Music is mostly written by Valentyn Povoroznyk, and lyrics by Roman Panasyuk. Povoroznyk was educated at a college majoring in physics; Panasyuk served in the army but both quit their occupations to play music. Maksym Velychko, who is an economist by education, is excellent on his solo guitar though he began his career in rock music as a pianist.

Vesnyany Halas was founded in the city of Kirovohrad in 1996; the present-day line-up was formed in 2003.

Vesnyany Halass music style is a romantic, melodic rock in the tradition along the lines set by Kobza, Komu Vnyz, Viy and VV rock groups.

Vesnyany Halas sing about roads we take in life, about search of harmony, about social issues such as alienation of man in the world of capitalist development, about degradation of the village life, the plight of village teachers who work hard to make a living, and about the young people from the countryside who become addicted to alcohol and drugs because there is no work in the villages and no prospects for the future; they migrate to large cities and are sucked in by mass culture.

Valentyn Povoroznyk and Roman Panasyuk recently visited the Welcome to Ukraine office and shared some of their views with the editor Maksym PROTSKIV. They believe that rock music promotes critical thinking which is based on self-awareness; in private life and in music they seek God in all of His unending manifestations and are in search of their true calling, of something that the eighteenth-century Ukrainian philosopher H. Skovoroda called congruent occupation.

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