Home » Music » Ukraine’s Kalush Orchestra advances to the Eurovision last : NPR

Ukraine’s Kalush Orchestra advances to the Eurovision last : NPR

Members of Ukraine’s band “Kalush Orchestra” have a good time their qualification throughout the first semifinal of the Eurovision Music contest 2022 on Tuesday on the Palalpitour venue in Turin. The second semifinal is on Thursday, with the grand last set for Saturday.

Marco Bertorello/AFP by way of Getty Photos


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Marco Bertorello/AFP by way of Getty Photos


Members of Ukraine’s band “Kalush Orchestra” have a good time their qualification throughout the first semifinal of the Eurovision Music contest 2022 on Tuesday on the Palalpitour venue in Turin. The second semifinal is on Thursday, with the grand last set for Saturday.

Marco Bertorello/AFP by way of Getty Photos

Ten international locations superior final night time from the primary spherical of Eurovision semi-finals to the ultimate spherical of the songwriting competitors, which is able to happen on Saturday in Turin, Italy.

Amongst them was Ukraine, represented by rap-folk band Kalush Orchestra. The three-member group — with their iconic pink bucket hat, energetic breakdancer and colourful conventional clothes — is favored to win the competitors, with bookmaker Parimatch Ukraine placing their odds at 73% on Wednesday. (Votes are solid by skilled juries and viewers from the collaborating international locations.)

They acquired a standing ovation after final night time’s efficiency, throughout which Ukraine’s Eurovision commentator might be seen broadcasting from a bomb shelter. And it wasn’t simply Ukrainian followers rooting for them: Acts from different international locations, together with Lithuania and Iceland, confirmed their help for Ukraine with statements and symbols.

The core members of the group, which was based as Kalush in 2019, are Oleh Psiuk, multi-instrumentalist Ihor Didenchuk, and dancer Vlad Kurochka, also called MC Kilimmen.

They launched Kalush Orchestra, which mixes hip-hop with components of conventional Ukrainian folks music, in 2021 with extra musicians, together with Tymofii Muzychuk, Vitalii Duzhyk, and Dzhonni Dyvny.

The band’s Eurovision entry, “Stefania,” is a singular earworm combining previous Ukranian melodies and conventional flute with up to date beats and rap. The efficiency itself included each folks dancing and break dancing, and the musicians wore a mixture of embroidered Cossack shirts and fashionable streetwear.


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Psiuk wrote “Stefania” about his personal mom earlier than Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Since then, many Ukrainians have come to affiliate the tune — with translated lyrics like “I’ll at all times stroll to you by damaged roads” and “the sector blooms, however she is popping grey” — with their very own motherland.

“After it began with the warfare and the hostilities, it took on extra that means, and many individuals began seeing it as their mom, Ukraine, within the that means of the nation,” Psiuk instructed the Related Press final week. “It has change into actually near the hearts of so many individuals in Ukraine.”

The tune has broad recognition in international locations throughout northern Europe, the place it is climbing up a number of Spotify charts.

Whereas Eurovision calls itself a nonpolitical occasion, Russia’s warfare in Ukraine has loomed massive within the worldwide competitors. Organizers banned Russian acts again in February, and Kalush Orchestra changed Ukraine’s unique contestant, Alina Pash, after the nation’s nationwide broadcaster suspended her whereas investigating a 2015 journey she made to Crimea.

The all-male group wanted particular permission from Ukrainian authorities to journey to Italy for the competition, because the nation has banned males of preventing age from leaving the nation. One unique band member stayed behind to battle, the AP experiences, and all plan to return to Ukraine after Eurovision ends.

Whereas they’re hoping to spice up Ukrainians’ morale with a win, they’ve stated in interviews that shining a worldwide highlight on the nation’s tradition and identification is in itself a type of victory.

“We perceive that we have to be completely targeted and concentrated, as a result of we’re right here to indicate that Ukrainian tradition and Ukrainian music exist,” Psiuk stated at a press convention, in line with an English translation. “They’re alive and so they have a really stunning and particular signature. So we’re completely targeted on this goal.”

This story initially appeared in the Morning Version dwell weblog.



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