In view of the terrible war in their homeland, Ukrainian musicians have initiated the Ukrainian freedom Orchestra, with the help of the Metropolitan Opera New York and the Polish National Opera. The orchestra brings together Ukrainian members of outstanding European and Ukrainian orchestras with refugee members of the concert and opera orchestras of Kyiv, Lviv, Kharkiv and Odessa. The Ukrainian Ministry of Culture has granted a special exemption to military-age male members of the orchestras inside the country to participate in this special project. A concert tour of Europe and the USA allows them to represent their country with artistic means. The orchestra will begin rehearsing in Warsaw on July 18; the first concert takes place at the Teatr Wielki, the Polish National Opera, on July 28. The orchestra’s tour takes it not only to Berlin, but also to the BBC Proms in London, to Munich, to the Chorégies d’Orange Festival in France, the Edinburgh Festival, to Snape Maltings in England, the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Lincoln Center in New York and the Kennedy Center in Washington.
Keri-Lynn Wilson’s international career as a guest conductor spans more than 20 years, leading some of the world’s most prestigious orchestras—such as the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra —and operas at the world’s top opera houses, including Covent Garden, the Bavarian State Opera, Bolshoi Theatre, and the Vienna State Opera. Next season, Keri-Lynn Wilson will make her Metropolitan Opera debut, conducting Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, and will return to Covent Garden to conduct La Traviata. Ms. Wilson’s work has been praised as “vividly shaped and nuanced” by The New York Times, and “elegantly incisive” by The Telegraph. Keri-Lynn Wilson received a nomination for conductor of the year from the 2020 Opus Klassik awards for her recording of Rossini’s Sigismondo with the Bavarian Radio.
Ukrainian soprano Liudmyla Monastyrska made her Metropolitan Opera debut singing the title role of Verdi’s Aida in 2012, followed by the title role of Puccini’s Tosca, Santuzza in Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana, and Abigaille in Verdi’s Nabucco. This season, she will sing the title role of Puccini’s Turandot at the Met, Abigaille in Nabucco at Covent Garden, and the title role of Aida in Naples and Verona. Recent performance highlights include Aida, Elisabeth in Don Carlo, Tosca, and Abigaille at the National Opera of Ukraine; Lady Macbeth in Verdi’s Macbeth at the Bavarian State Opera; Leonora in Il Trovatore at La Scala; Tosca in Rome and Barcelona; Abigaille at Deutsche Oper Berlin and in Hamburg; Leonora in La Forza del Destino at Deutsche Oper Berlin and Covent Garden; and Santuzza in concert with the NDR Radiophilharmonie.
Ukrainian pianist Anna Fedorova has performed with leading ensembles including the Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic, Tokyo Symphony, Yomiuri Orchestra, Russian National Orchestra, Utah Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Hong Kong Philharmonic, and the Netherlands Philharmonic. In 2018, Anna Fedorova signed with Channel Classics Records and released six albums, including Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 1 with the St. Gallen Symphony Orchestra and the duo album Silhouettes with violist Dana Zemtsov. In March, she organized a charity concert with members of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and cellist Maya Fridman, raising €111,000 in humanitarian aid for the victims of the war in Ukraine.
Symphony No. 7 (2003)
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 2 in F-minor Op. 21 (1830)
“Abscheulicher! Wo eilst du hin?“ Aria from the Opera “Fidelio“ Op. 72 (1805)
Symphony No. 4 in E-minor Op. 98 (1885)
A special concert before Young Euro Classic begins: not a youth orchestra, but a project this festival simply must support!
In view of the terrible war in their homeland, Ukrainian musicians have initiated the Ukrainian Freedom Orchestra, supported by the Metropolitan Opera New York and the Polish National Opera. This orchestra brings together Ukrainian members of outstanding European and Ukrainian orchestras with refugee members of the concert and opera orchestras of Kyiv, Lviv, Kharkiv and Odessa. A concert tour of Europe and the USA allows them to represent their country with artistic means. The concert will be led by the Canadian-Ukrainian conductor Keri-Lynn Wilson; the soloists are soprano Liudmyla Monastyrska and the pianist Anna Fedorova. The evening’s programme begins with music by the Ukrainian composer Valentin Sylvestrov, who was persecuted during Soviet times for his nonconformist art and now had to flee to Berlin. The Polish composer Frédéric Chopin also went into exile, never returning to his homeland that was oppressed by the Russian tsar. Injustice, violence and the victory of freedom is also the topic of Beethoven’s opera Fidelio. The evening concludes with Brahms’ Fourth Symphony.
The concert in Berlin takes place in cooperation with Young Euro Classic, the Konzerthaus Berlin and the Kulturprojekte Berlin GmbH and is part of the Kultursommerfestival.