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Mainstream, VOL LX No 16, New Delhi, April 9, 2022

Music: Veryovka Ukrainian Folk Choir – Український народний хор ім. г. верьовки

Friday 8 April 2022


Veryovka Ukrainian Folk Choir
Art Director: Anatoly Avdievsky

Oh, I’m so pretty (Urkainian folk song)
A small willow board (arr. by A. Avdievsky)
Oh, that violin didn’t play (arr. by V. Samiylenko)
Lullaby (arr. by A. Avdievsky)
The barrow by the Volga (I. Shamo – D. Lutsenko)
My field (V. Filipenko – L. Reva)
Grey geese. Ducklings-goslings
Oh, I’ll go to the green grove
Oh, over the hill and into the woods
Oh, the rustling in the oak grove
(arr. by V. Stupnitsky)
Our field lies vast (arr. by A. Avdievsky – M. Singaivsky)
Guzul tunes
The green rye (Ukrainian folk song)
A leafy willow in the garden (Ukrainian folk song)
The snow is white (A. Avdievsky – M. Sam)
New Year’s song (Words by V. Danileiko)

N. Bocharova
V. Kaminskaya
V. Kharchenko
N. Matvienko
V. Cherkun
A. Gorova

Conductor: S. Pavlyuchenko

From back cover:
’Once Nikolai Gogol remarked that "the Ukrainian literally rings with songs". Indeed songs are everywhere in the Ukraine: on the boundless fields and in the blossoming gardens; their enchanting melodies are floating over the Dnieper and it seems that the voice of a human soul filled with infinite love for the fatherland is heard in them. "Ukrainian songs and poetry are one of the most charming and exquisitely-wrought branches on the tree of world culture", – wrote Anatoly Lunacharsky, an eminent cultural worker and statesmen.

And let us not forget about dances: Hopak, Kazachok, Marina – what a wealth of fantasy, sparkling humoir, plasticity and beauty.

We find all these qualities in the performances of the Veryovka Ukrainian Folk Choir whose present art director is Anatoly Avdievsky, a Merited Art Worker of the Ukrainian SSR and Shevchenko prize laureate. Over a quarter of a century this Choir has been carrying a ringing fame of the Ukrainian people around the world.

The Ukrainian Folk Choir was born at the time when German fascists trampled our sacred land crushing our national culture. Its birth date is September 11, 1943. Its birthplace is Kharkov, recently liberated from the fascists.

The task of organizing and coaching a national choir was entrusted to Grigori Veryovka, a famous Ukrainian composer and choir conductor. That was a Herculean job. But already a year later, in 1944, having moved to the liberated Kiev, the Choir found its own language of songs, music and dance.

Since that time the Choir had performed in many Ukrainian towns and villages, toured other republics of the USSR, had demonstrated its art in Poland, Rumania, GDR, Yugoslavia, Korea, Luxemburg, Finland, Belgium, and FRG. Everywhere the press was unanimous in praising its performances.

The Choir was made up of former collective farmers and workers, whoa had no special music training, but they worked and studied with persistency, mastering the art of choral singing, music, and dances.

Anatoly Timofeyevich Avdievsky – the art director and chief conductor of the Choir is deeply in love with folk songs, music and dances and is endowed with a subtle musical feeling, hence the inimitable features of the Choir’s style, the variety and the fresh hues. The Choir’s singing is emotional, original and deeply national in character.

One thing deserves special mention, namely: the Choir’s "a cappella" performances. The tradition of choral singing without accompaniment is not a new feature in Ukrainian folk singing but dates back well over the centuries. And it is not by chance that folk polyphonic singing had been preserved to this day.

The repertoire of the Choir includes folk and modern composers’ songs, vocal and choreographic scenes and national dances.

Much attention is given to the development of professional technique and perception of the underlying idea of the musical pieces. The result is a performance which is truly astounding.

"The beauty of the Ukrainian ensemble’s choral singing defies all expressions!" "The performances of the Ukrainian folk choir is the central event of the year", those were the comments of Mexican and Canadian newspapers during the Choir’s tour and Montreal "EXPO-67" performances.

Constant success accompanies the performances of the Choir’s soloists: Vassily Zavgorodny, Valentina Khitsenko, Nina Mantvienko – a talented singer from Polesye, Valentina Cherkun, Yevgeni Bobrovnikov, the sopilka player, etc.

The orchestra of Urkainian folk instruments is directed by Stanislav Pavlyuchenko, Kiev Conservatoire graduate, a Merited Artist of the Ukrainian SSR.

The Choir’s further plans include a cycle of ritual songs entitled "The Seaons", comprising spring, marriage, etc., songs, series of songs interpreted for the choir by modern composers M. Leontovich, K. Stetsenko, P. Kozitsky, V. Stupinsky. They also plan a programme for children consisting of spring songs and other Ukrainian folk choral pieces.’

- Mikhail Golovashcenko

STEREO 33CM 02707–08(a)
Made in USSR

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