Chornobyl Songs Project: Living Culture from a Lost World
Village Songs from Ukraine performed by Ensemble Hilka (NYC)
Led by Music Director and Song Collector Yevhen Yefremov (Ensemble Drevo, Kyiv)
- Thursday, December 1: New Jersey – Princeton University, Taplin Auditorium, 7PM
- Friday, December 2: New York City – Ukrainian Museum, 222 East 6th Street (7PM)
- Saturday, December 3: Washington, DC – Washington Ethical Society Meeting Hall, 7750 16th Street NW (8PM)
- Sunday, December 4: Philadelphia – Crossroads Music at Calvary Church, 801 South 48th Street (7:30PM)
2011 marks the 25th Anniversary of the Chornobyl Disaster that irrevocably transformed the ecological and social dimensions of life in the Ukrainian and Belarusian regions now known as the “Chornobyl Zone.” Since 1986, the traditional communities of the Chornobyl zone have been largely dispersed and destroyed, and today, very few people remain in the region. Yet, a trace of the human spirit that used to populate this region remains, in the form of archival field recordings that document the ritual and quotidian aspects of daily life before the disaster.
In the 1970s, ethnomusicologist and song collector YevhenYefremov conducted numerous field expeditions into the Chornobyl region. The foremost Ukrainian expert in polyphonic singing styles of Central and Northern Ukraine, Dr. Yefremov will lead New York-based Ensemble Hilka in reinterpreting traditional songs from the Chornobyl region; the ensemble features some of New York City’s leading East European folksingers. A pedagogue and a writer, Dr. Yefremov is also the founder of the important Ukrainian revival choir Drevo (tree).
Curated by Dr. Yefremov and Ukrainian-American ethnomusicologist and singer Maria Sonevytsky, Ensemble Hilka’s four East Coast performances December 1st – 4th will be accompanied by projected archival footage and photographs coordinated by director Virlana Tkacz and Yara Arts Group.
Following the 7PM performance at Princeton University’s Taplin Hall on Thursday, December 1st, Ensemble Hilka presents the Chornobyl Songs Project in New York City at The Ukrainian Museum (222 East 6th Street, between 2nd and 3rd) in Manhattan’s East Village, on Friday, December 2nd, at 7PM. The group performs on Saturday evening, December 3rd, at 8PM in Washington, DC at The Washington Ethical Society Meeting Hall, 7750 16th Street NW. Performers then travel to Philadelphia for a performance sponsored by Cross Roads Music at Calvary Church, at 801 South 48th Street, on Sunday, December 4th, at 7:30PM.
Admission for the New York and Washington concerts is $15, with senior and student discounts available; entrance to the Philadelphia performance is on a sliding scale ($10-$30). The Princeton performance is free. Tickets for the New York performance may be purchased in advance via The Ukrainian Museum’s website, www.ukrainianmuseum.org. For further details visit www.ctmd.org and www.crossroadsconcerts.org.