People heard in the music the most intimate thing that cannot be expressed by words, because it was human soul! Conducted by Roman Kofman, the Academic Symphony Orchestra of the National Philharmonic Society of Ukraine performed “The Death of Ase” by Edvard Grieg (from suite to Henrik Ibsen’s drama Peer Gynt), Valentyn Bibik’s Dedication, parts of the Fifth and Seventh Symphonies by Ludwig van Beethoven, and parts of the Sixth Pathetique Symphony by Pyotr Tchaikovsky. This evening the musicians played under the auspices of the heavenly powers, and messages of the great composers got through to the audience.
Music speaks without words about what we, the entire Kyiv and all the nation, are experiencing today: grief and guilt, hope and faith in the light that shines in the darkness. Music heals, as throughout the performance, the audience felt united and seemed to pray together with musicians on stage and everyone who watched the live broadcast of the concert in Ukraine. The crowded hall’s guests included Euromaidan activists and self-defense members, while the organizers requested the audience to refrain from applauding.
According to general director of the National Philharmonic Society Dmytro Ostapenko, their staff, despite the premises being at the epicenter of the tragic events, continued to work and perform concerts. “We were acutely aware of everything that happened in Kyiv, and sought to support people by the means of high art. Today we have invited all to honor the heroes of the Heavenly Sotnia. The best sons and daughters of Ukraine sacrificed their lives on the altar of freedom for democracy, for the future of our nation. We deeply mourn and express our condolences to the relatives of the victims. Our common objective is to reconcile society, to give people a hope for the understanding and the ability to adapt. At the initiative of our orchestra’s musicians, the philharmonic’s management decided to held it as a charity concert. To allow everyone to attend it, we handed out invitations at the Euromaidan and sent them to medical units, so that those who could would come to the concert...”
Music heard during the memorial evening was mournful and solemn, as we were holding a funeral and glorification service for the fallen members of the Heavenly Sotnia. Throughout it all, listeners had a feeling that resources that are usually dormant in ordinary life are coming up from the soul’s depths. It is important for us as Ukrainians to keep this new awareness of ourselves for a future life in a new country. Glory to the heroes!