Children and young people from Ukraine who came to Slovenia in search of a safe shelter from the war will perform a concert in Cankarjev dom in Ljubljana, Slovenia on 11 May in order to collect funds to help Ukrainian people as they best know how: through music. The art and donor project “Music for the Future” saw young Ukrainian musical talents connect with young musicians from Slovenia under the auspices of the Slovene National Youth Orchestra; for this project, they joined forces with UNICEF Slovenia. Onstage, children and young people will be able to count on the priceless support of the soloist Gidon Kremer, one of the most important representatives of the artistic and musical field.
One bag, a mobile phone and their most valuable possession – their instrument which represents their life and all of their hopes and dreams. This is all that the young musical talents who found safe refuge in Slovenia took with them as they were fleeing Ukraine. Experiences of fleeing children can often dehumanise them, which is why children (the youngest of which is 7 years old) and young people from Ukraine are seeking support and strength through music as they continue with their mission. In doing so, they wish to develop their talents, rise above the trauma of war and contribute to a better future for themselves and others.
On 11 May, musical talents from Ukraine and young musicians from Slovenia under the auspices of the Slovene National Youth Orchestra, united in a common orchestra called “Music for the Future”, will take the stage in Cankarjev dom in Ljubljana, Slovenia. Before, during and after the event, donations will be collected in cooperation with UNICEF Slovenia in order to help the participating musicians and their families from Ukraine, and contribute to UNICEF aid programmes for children and families from Ukraine.
“Art is a perspective; in its essence, it is a brilliant light filled with values and principles of humanity. Young people who have opted for this mission and who have chosen the life path of a professional musician, of an artist, are currently under a lot of pressure; they are disheartened since they do not know how to cope without music, nor when (and if) they will feel its uniting power ever again. When fleeing from the war, they are only travelling with what they were able to take with them as they decided to leave their homes. Their instruments contain their lives; they give them the feeling of being alive,” says Živa Ploj Peršuh, the conductor and artistic director of the Slovene National Youth Orchestra.
The upcoming concert in Ljubljana is a demonstration and proof of the fact that children and young people from Ukraine wish to integrate into a new environment. Music strengthens human bonds and solidarity, and shows us that we can co-create and understand one another. Onstage, children and young people will be able to count on the priceless support of the soloist Gidon Kremer, 75-year-old violinist and Grammy recipient who shines out as one of the most important representatives of the artistic and musical field. For each and every one of them, the support of the audience means that they are being perceived, listened to and heard not only as young artists but, first and foremost, as human beings.
“No child should have to experience the horrors of war. The traumas suffered by children in crisis areas can change them forever. All of us have a duty to help them: first by providing emergency assistance in the field, but also in the long run, by giving them the possibility of getting back up on their feet and build a better life for themselves. Overnight, these children have had to leave behind everything they knew. The “Music for the Future” project allows them to participate in a common effort, thus empowering them by literally giving them power to actively co-create their own future, continue with their mission, and use their talents to help themselves and others to a better future,” says Tomaž Bergoč, the Executive Director of UNICEF Slovenia.
Since the beginning, UNICEF has been helping children and families from Ukraine where UNICEF workers in the field are reporting on the fact that, in the decades of their work, they have rarely seen so much destruction in so little time. Desperate families are forced to resort to unspeakable acts in order to obtain food, water, health care and safety for their children.
“Unfortunately, we no longer hope that this nightmare will end in the following days, which is why I feel that we must take care for these young people. We are striving to help them with our knowledge and experience, thus empowering them to remain brave, strong and unyielding. We must do whatever it takes to help them maintain hope and keep their dreams, their lightheartedness, and the spark ignited in their eyes. These are young people; we must give them a perspective and a future. Even if they currently don’t have a home, they still have a life, which must go on. Even if on another location,” adds Živa Ploj Peršuh.
“The young musicians from Ukraine demonstrate an unwavering will to live and to create. With the support of classical music fans and donors, we sincerely hope that many a family from Ukraine will remember not only the painful days that they are going through but also the solidarity that they experienced during this time,” adds Tomaž Bergoč.
The tickets for the concert which will take place on 11 May in Cankarjev dom in Ljubljana are already available at https://unicef.si/pomoc/musicforthefuture.
You can help children and families from Ukraine:
- by using this website
- with a bank transfer to the current account number SI56 0284 3026 4222 554, reference: SI 00 45000, recipient: SLOVENSKA FUNDACIJA ZA UNICEF, PAVŠIČEVA 1, 1000 LJUBLJANA.