We are all watching the situation in Ukraine with horror. What’s happening over there now is unspeakable and fills me with great sadness, and I know many of you feel the same way.
At the recent Grammy Awards, President Volodymr Zelensky asked the audience to fill the silence with music. That’s exactly what a group of amateur musicians is doing.
You may know that playing piano is an important part of my life. Polly van der Linde, the director of the piano camp I regularly attend in Bennington, Vermont, asked for volunteers to learn and play the music of Ukrainian composers. She expected a few people to respond. Over 100 people expressed interest and more than 50 of us will be playing a benefit concert featuring the music of Ukrainian composers on Saturday, April 23rd at 4pm EDT.
Each participating pianist will record a piece we’ve learned over the last few weeks. The concert will stream all of the recordings–including the music of 10 Ukrainian composers, plus the National Anthem–on April 23rd, with proceeds going to the Global Giving Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund. The full concert will be available on an archived web page afterwards.
My piece is by Nikolai Kapustin, one of my favorite 20th century composers. He combines jazz and rock elements into a classical style in a very unique way. Even though I’ve played his music for several years, it wasn’t until last month that I realized he was Ukrainian and not Russian!
Some of the pieces being played are not well-known in the classical music world. But we feel this is a great opportunity to celebrate the rich musical history of a country that has given us so many wonderful classical composers and musicians.
Our goal is to raise at least $50,000 for humanitarian relief. We’re well on our way, but I’m hoping you will find it in your heart to join our effort by donating what you can to this important cause.
News Flash: CBS National News will be running a short piece highlighting this effort tonight, Thursday, April 21st during the Evening News, starting around 6:45 PM. Check this out!
And please join us on April 23rd as we fill the world with Ukrainian piano music.
Contact me to find out how you can get heard above the noise–even in a crisis situation.
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