A series of concerts, poetry recitals, literary discussions and film screenings will take place in the Donbas cities of Mariupol, Bahmut and Konstantinovka next week as part of a project called “Kharkiv Choosing Ukraine”, Serhiy Zhadan told KhO yesterday.
The writer, who is currently promoting his forthcoming poetry collection Tampliyery (“The Templars”), said that the events, organized by Kharkiv volunteers, would feature music from Vasyl Ryabko and his band Papa Carlo, singer Boris Sevastianov, and his own band, Sobaki. The journalist Vladimir Chystylin is to present his film The Heroes Never Die, about Kharkivites killed during the Euromaidan, he added.
Guests from Kyiv, Lviv and the Donbas, including singer Angelica Rudnytska and writer Halyna Kruk, will also take part. Altogether, some 30 artists will perform for audiences made up of both civilians and armed forces personnel.
A number of the artists involved have previously taken part in a similar tour of Western Ukraine.
Zhadan said he wanted people to “remind each other […] that it is the third year of real war taking place in our country”, and that “we can’t see any prospect that it will end soon”. He went on that that as long as this is the case, “we have to stick together and help our fellow citizens in the east, both those who are fighting in the war, and civilians who live there in the zone of military conflict”.
He also said that he thought people in the Donbas had become “more confident” over the past two years, and were more likely than previously to feel like “citizens of Ukraine”.
The group will set off following Independence Day celebrations on Tuesday.
Pictures and reporting: Olena Sokolynska