Efstern economist. 2001. 8-14 Oct. Vol.8 #37(401)


Kyiv Music Festival

KYIV. On Oct.1 the 12th international Kyiv Music Fest2001 closed having opened Sept.22 with a grand concert at the National Philharmonia that featured the works of Dmytro Klebanov, Valentyn Borysov, Myroslav Skoryk and Maurice Ravel. Mykola Diadiura conducted the National Philharmonic Orchestra with soloist Yuriy Kharenko, an American violinist. The 10-day festival offered audiences an impressive 34 concerts featuring five symphonies, four chamber orchestras and 12 choirs, all for free.

The Kyiv Music Fest is the most prestigious event of contemporary academic music available on Kyiv's main concert halls: the National Philharmonia, Ukraine House, The Tchaikovsky Academy of Music, The Scientists' House, and St.Nicholas Cathedral, also known as the House of Organ and Chamber Music.

For the first time ever, the festival held one performance outside of Kyiv when the people of Chernihiv were treated to a successful concert in their own philharmonia hall. The final performance in Chernihiv involved musicians, music theorists, composers and media celebrating spirituality. Traveling to the underground churches of the Antoniy catacombs, musicians experienced the wonderful acoustics of this holy place. The ancient catacombs in Chernihiv are second in age only to Kyiv's Pechersk Lavra.

Kyivites headed by Ivan Karabyts, the ever-energetic composer who is the festival's permanent director, brought to Chernihiv a unique exhibition of copies of ancient sheet music written by Western European composers. The exhibition included music signed by Bach and members of his family, as well as choir sheet music of well-known Ukrainian composer Maksym Berezovskiy for Otche Nash or the Our Father, printed in Leipzig.

This exhibition was the first of a series of presentations hosted by the Central State Archive Museum of Ukrainian Literature and Art. It will travel to different regions in Ukraine and is intended to showcase unique spiritual works and popularize obscure sheet music that is critical to musicians.

In total, the music festival launched more premieres in 2001 than all of Kyiv's cinema houses put together. One hundred of the 300 festival works were premieres by Ukrainian composers wanting festival audiences to be the first to hear their music. There were also 80 premieres by foreign composers who despite the festival's limited budget arrived from Russia, the US, Bulgaria, Japan, Austria, Poland, Italy and Switzerland. Moreover, the festival's music ranged from ancient Kyiv anthems to premieres from the new millennium, from jazz, organ, choir, and chamber music to folk and spiritual works.

Traditionally, Kyiv Music Fest is a gathering of composers from regional schools and this year was no exception as 60 composers from L'viv, Donetsk, Kharkiv, Odesa, Uzhorod, and Dnipropetrovsk came together in Kyiv to showcase their music. For the first time, the works of winners of the Fest-Debut regional competition were performed. These young, new composers were from Kyiv, Odesa, Luhansk, Nova Kakhovka and Torez.

A series of spiritual choir music days called 950 Years of the Holy Lavra were also included in the festival program, ushered in by the ringing of the Big Lavra bells. The program included a master-class by US singer Patricia Miller, the presentation of a collection of academic articles called Ukrainian themes in World Culture, published with the support of the Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute, an art project from the music library of Borys Liatoshynskiy, and a concert of chamber works of Dmitry Shostakovich.

Although the festival officially ended Oct.1, the final chords continue to reverberate: on Nov.4 the Philharmonia will feature the Vienna Chamber Choir with the Viennese Academy Chamber Orchestra.

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