Ukrainian Freedom Orchestra Returns For August Tour

By Francisco Salazar

The Metropolitan Opera has announced that the Ukrainian Freedom Orchestra, under the music direction of Keri-Lynn Wilson, will reunite this August for a tour of major European festivals and cities, continuing to demonstrate Ukrainian artistry as the nation fights for its freedom.

The 74-piece orchestra includes Ukrainian musicians from across the country, with some male members having received special permission from the Ukrainian government to contribute to their nation through their music. The orchestra also comprises Ukrainian refugee musicians and Ukrainian members of European orchestras. Ukrainian violinist Valeriy Sokolov will perform as the soloist.

Under the patronage of Ukraine’s First Lady, Olena Zelenska, the orchestra will assemble once again in Warsaw at the Polish National Opera in coordination with the Ukrainian Ministry of Culture and the Metropolitan Opera.

The tour will commence at the Polish National Opera with a performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, featuring the Chorus of the Polish Białystok Opera and Ukrainian soloists Olga Kulchynska, Nicole Chirka, Dmytro Popov, and Vladyslav Buialskyi.

The rest of the tour will include a program featuring the Second Violin Concerto by Ukrainian composer Yevhen Stankovych and Beethoven’s Third Symphony, “Eroica.”

The tour will begin on August 20 and run through September 3, 2023. Concerts are scheduled in Warsaw, Gdansk, Berlin, Lucerne, Amsterdam, Hamburg, Snape Maltings, and London.