Sound studio

A virtual orchestra performs with a Kiev violinist stuck in a bomb shelter

Musicians from all corners of the world raised the bow in solidarity with their counterparts from Ukraine.

A touching rendition of the folk song “Verbovaya Doschechka” has been shared online today.

Illia Bondarenko, hiding in an air-raid shelter in Kyiv, opens the clip as he defiantly stares into the camera.

The camera rolls and he is joined, virtually, by dozens of other violinists.

From the world’s greatest orchestras to a solitary violinist in the Scottish Highlands, the universal message was one of hope, explained British violinist Kerenza Peacock.



Illia Bondarenko had to film between explosions because he couldn't hear himself playing (Photo: Kerenza Peacock)


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Illia Bondarenko had to film between explosions because he couldn’t hear himself playing (Photo: Kerenza Peacock)



The sound of solidarity: Musicians came together to share their support for Ukraine (Photo: Kerenza Peacock)


© Provided by Metro
The sound of solidarity: Musicians came together to share their support for Ukraine (Photo: Kerenza Peacock)

She raises funds for people affected by war through the Violinists Support Ukraine website.

She said: “The day Putin’s forces invaded Ukraine, I was at home practicing my scales. I wondered what my Ukrainian counterparts were doing at that time. So I took to Instagram and made friends with violinists in Ukraine.

“Some also practiced their ranges – in the meantime, armed themselves with Molotov cocktails.

“Some violinists were hiding in basements and bomb shelters in Kyiv, but still had their violins with them.

“Devastated to learn that the explosions were so close and desperate to offer some comfort, I asked one of them, the young virtuoso Illia Bondarenko, if he could film himself playing in his shelter in the basement.

“I then asked other violinists from Ukraine and colleagues from all over the world to play with him in harmony.”

Within 48 hours, Kerenza received videos from 94 violinists, representing support from 29 different countries.

Nine other young violinists who are refugees in Ukraine joined Illia, and musicians from the London Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Symphony, Oslo Philharmonic, Munich Chamber Orchestra and Hollywood Studios also took part.

Illia was forced to film his segment between outbursts because he couldn’t hear himself playing.



Trenches are prepared at the roadside as a precaution amid Russian attacks in Kiev this week (Picture: Anadolu)


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Trenches are prepared at the roadside as a precaution amid Russian attacks in Kiev this week (Picture: Anadolu)



A woman sits on a bed in a shelter, set up for displaced people fleeing Ukraine, in Przemysl, Poland (Picture: AP)


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A woman sits on a bed in a shelter, set up for displaced people fleeing Ukraine, in Przemysl, Poland (Picture: AP)

More Ukrainians wanted to participate, but could not “because now they have weapons in their hands instead of violins”.

Kerenza added: “Violinists are a community that all have rosin and broken E strings in common, but unfortunately some currently have to think about how to arm themselves and hide in bomb shelters instead. to play Beethoven or bluegrass.

“The violin has traditionally been an instrument for expressing grief. Watching each video as it arrived in my inbox was very moving.

“We play for peace and encourage everyone to find a way to help ukraine.’

Verbovaya Doschechka is a folk song traditionally sung during an ancient Ukrainian traditional spring game called “The Willow Board”.

Violinists Support Ukraine’s lively rendition brought many to tears.

Footballer Gary Lineker shared the video on Twitter and wrote: “Wonderful. If not for the megalomaniacal, narcissistic and bizarrely territorial leaders across the world I think we would all get along pretty peacefully.

Author Patrick Gale added that the video was “almost unbearably emotional”.

Music was increasingly used as an act of defiance throughout the conflict in Ukraine.

The house of Irina Maniukina, mother of two, was nearly destroyed in a Russian bombardment this week.

While debris was strewn throughout the apartment, her white piano was miraculously still intact.



Irina Maniukina briefly


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Irina Maniukina briefly ‘forgot the cares of war’ when she swept the ashes onto her grand piano (Picture: Kennedy News Media)

A video of Irina dusting the ashes from her keys before playing the piano to “forget the worries of war” was viewed 1.6 million times.

And on Wednesday, the Kyiv-Classic Symphony Orchestra brought music to the city’s central Maidan square.

The national anthem of Ukraine resounds throughout the city during the emotionally charged afternoon.

A more impromptu performance was seen in Odessa.

Against the backdrop of barricades and the Odessa Opera House, Ukrainian soldiers performed a rendition of “Don’t Worry Be Happy.”

While Ukrainians may use music to lift their spirits, Vladimir Putin’s forces are said to be suffering from low morale.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky says that between 500 and 600 Russian soldiers surrendered yesterday alone.

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