When art finances the Ukrainian army The war in Ukraine

In the center of Kyiv, Marusya Ionova and Nadia Golubtsova go to the basement of Dakh, a well-known Ukrainian theater school. Playing a few notes on an untuned piano that has survived the best days, Marusya is preparing to meet several students who are going to rehearse experimental theatrical choreography tonight.

Marusya Ionova and Nadiya Holubtsova greet the small troupe of acting students of the Kyiv school “Dakh”.

Photo: Radio Canada

The course takes place in one of the cramped rooms, in a small, very dark room, which serves as a stage. While young people dressed in black are busy setting up chairs in the center of the room, Marius chooses sharp electronic music, and Nadia gives instructions for today’s rehearsal.

A soulful artistic performance for Marusya, who three months ago, when the war began, was forced to postpone all her art.

We didn’t know what to do for our country, with our art, so we started writing a military diary. »

The quote h Marius Ionov

So she and Nadezhda turned this military diary into a play they wanted to present abroad. To promote Ukrainian culture during the war and artistically explain what its people experienced.

: qu’est-ce qu’un être humain, comment ne pas être absorbé par les ténèbres pendant cette guerre? Mais aussi de simples questions, comme qu’est-ce que l’amour, qu’est-ce que la haine? Comment des gens qui sont loin de la guerre peuvent avoir de l’empathie? Ceux qui étaient en train de mourir ne sont pas juste des numéros. Alors, comment fait-on pour se tenir tous ensemble?”,”text”:”On a exploré certaines questions sur le thème: qu’est-ce qu’un être humain, comment ne pas être absorbé par les ténèbres pendant cette guerre? Mais aussi de simples questions, comme qu’est-ce que l’amour, qu’est-ce que la haine? Comment des gens qui sont loin de la guerre peuvent avoir de l’empathie? Ceux qui étaient en train de mourir ne sont pas juste des numéros. Alors, comment fait-on pour se tenir tous ensemble?”}}”>We considered the question: what is a man, how not to absorb the darkness during this war? But also simple questions, such as what is love, what is hatred? How can people who are far from war have empathy? Those who died are not just numbers. So how are we all together?

For Marusya Iona, being on stage is an opportunity to express herself and an act of support for her country during the war

Photo: Radio-Canada / Frédéric Arnould

Thus was born Human, a question mark, a set of musical and theatrical performances against the background of the war and its deadly bombings. The show was presented a few weeks ago in Hanover, Germany and in Budapest, Hungary. Not without emotion for the two artists, but it was after returning to their land that they felt the full impact of their art on their land.

In Kyiv, a few days after this European escapade, Marusya really decides to offer this spectacle as part of a special one-day event she organizes and baptizes. Art as a weaponart as a weapon.

In the basement of the Dakh school, these students of actors are rehearsing choreography, which will be presented in Kyiv as part of another benefit for the Ukrainian army.

Photo: Radio-Canada / Frédéric Arnould

An event filled with theater, music, creative workshops and fine arts, which was an unexpected success; hundreds of curious people came.

This was the first cultural event since the beginning of the war, and there were many spectators, we did not expect. Marusya remembers.

The show they developed for the Europeans actually won over their fellow citizens. The audience cried and laughed, all together, and in the end everyone stood and said “Glory to Ukraine”, and it gave us so much energyadded Marius.

Poster of the event “Art as a weapon”, a day dedicated to art for the benefit of the Ukrainian army

Photo: poster of the event

Thanks to the success of the event, the money was raised through ticket sales. Several thousand dollars, which may seem ridiculous to the Russian enemy, but which donated to the Ukrainian army.

It’s a way to take care of the people we love, if it’s patriotism, then yes, it’s a patriotic act admits Nadia Golubtsova.

Marusya Ionova plays several notes on a slightly untuned piano, which she saw in her best days in the basement of the Dakh acting school in the center of Kyiv.

Photo: Radio-Canada / Frédéric Arnould

Event Art as a weapon According to her, it has never been so aptly named. Culture is a very powerful weapon, it is a matter of reason. When you fall, when it’s hard, when darkness engulfs you, it’s important to understand what you’re fighting for, not what you’re fighting for.she adds.

For Marius, art is also a weapon of liberation. They can destroy our buildings, our houses, but they will never destroy what we call here in the Ukrainian language, our freedom, this is all that belongs to our nation.

Not only Marusya’s detachment gradually resumed its activities. Recently, the Kyiv Opera again began to accept a limited number of spectators for performances The barber of Seville. A way of symbolically resisting the aggressor, letting him know that fear does not prevent them from living a normal life.

For their part, Marusya and Nadia will offer another day of cultural events in Kyiv in the coming weeks. Another way to make famous artists and art over time is a more confidential success.

You should not immediately count on a very light and humorous tone, warns Nadia. We would like comedy to come after tragedy, but we have not yet achieved that.

Kyiv actress and artist Nadia Holubtsova believes that if helping the Ukrainian army with an artistic performance is patriotism, then being an artist is a patriotic act.

Photo: Radio-Canada / Frédéric Arnould

In any case, perhaps not until the future liberation of their country, they believe in unison.

I hope that soon we will be able to turn all this energy, created by hatred and aggression, into a new form of human consciousness, and I think that the last empire, Russia, will disintegrate.they shout together. Do you really think so? ”I asked them. Pffff, of course …they released, as if sweeping Vladimir Putin’s country with a simple wave of their hand.

So many Ukrainian hopes leave this dark place in the center of Kyiv, where these artistic performances are being invented, which really became a weapon of mass distraction during these times of war.