Luhansk Regional philharmonic – culture institution, which honorably represents Luhansk Regional philharmonic in Ukraine and all over the world, active popularizer of the best samples of world, Ukrainian and modern classic music.
Luhansk Regional philharmonic is one of the founders of region`s culture life, it`s main principium and aim is promote enjoying of music art and renaissance of Ukrainian cultural heritage.
The story of Luhansk Regional philharmonic begins from the year 1943. The first director had become D. Slashchov, the first artistic director – A. Kovalskii.
At first the Philharmonic did not have its own building structure, but this absence did not prevent the artists from astonishing listeners with concert programs, give concert tours throught the cities and districts. The institution of culture involved pop- theatre and the Young Communist ensemble of songs and dance. Symphony ensemble, ensemble of song and dance, ensemble of bandura players, theatrical jazz, as well as a group of philharmonic soloists were also approved.
By that time, S. Muratov was appointed as the director of the Philharmonic, and S. Ratner, the head of the symphony ensemble, became the artistic director. During this time, began the concert awareness-building: at the first post-war concert season, the works of famous composers were performed by the symphony ensemble.
The ensemble of songs and dance consisted of the best singers, dancers and musicians of the region. The repertoire included folk and classical songs, which were written during the Second World War.
As long ago as year 1945, in the city was established a symphony orchestra, upon an initiative of Anton Gayovy, the first secretary of the regional committee of the Communist Party of Ukraine.
On that particular 40's and 50's, philharmonic has established the main traditions of musical awareness-building in the Luhansk region: there were held lecture accompanied by music performance, a number of thematic programs for schoolchildren, students of secondary and higher educational institutions, factory dormitories and village halls. During this period, the symphony orchestra of the Philharmonic Society became the leading band of the region, the concert hall of the Philharmonic – the center of musical work of the region. Citizens of Luhansk, for the first time in their lives, saw well-known musicians: Boris Goldshtein, David Oistrakh, Julian Sitkovetsky, Leonid Kogan, Emil Gilels, Gregory Ginzburg, Reinhold Glier and many others.
During many years, prominent representatives of the Philharmonic, as the People's Artist of the USSR Yuri Bohatykov, the Honored Artist of Ukraine Petr Shapovalov, People's Artist of Ukraine Julietta Yakubovich, People's Artist of Ukraine Galina Murzay, People's Artist of Ukraine Volodymyr Kalashnikov, People's Artist of Ukraine Volodymyr Savchenko, actress of Ukraine Vera Andriyanenko, Honored Artist of Ukraine Lev Stavytsky, People's Artist of Ukraine Volodymyr Samartsev, had been presenting their incredible talents for listeners.
Even at that time the Philharmonic was not only the center of the spiritual life of the region, but also one of the leading concert organizations of the country. In the 60's and 80's, there were represented operas by worldwide renowned composers such as J. Verdi ("Traviata"), J. Rossini ("The Barber of Seville"), P.I. Tchaikovsky (Iolanta) and others.
The next 15 years were no less than rich in events. So, in 1985 in the hall of the Philharmonic was installed an organ, then the only one in Ukraine, made by the German firm "Alexander Shuket". This organ was specifically designed for this hall. Extremely high-quality registers, mechanics, inside structure, sound result have always made a conspicuous figure of visiting soloist-organists. But his permanent treasurer is rightfully considered the Honored Artist of Ukraine Anna Mokrova, who had been playing on this instrument since 1986.
One of the main creative department of the Philharmonic was the music lectorium. The soloists were Laureates of many international competitions and festivals Olena Bosenko and Igor Novikov, Honored Art Worker of Ukraine Yury Kalashnikov, Honored Artist of Ukraine Lyudmila Kolesnikova, Lyudmila Manasyan and Anna Mokrova, People's Artists of Ukraine Volodymyr Savchenko, Vera Andriyanenko and Volodymyr Samartsev.
In the 80`s the pop-music direction began to develop actively. At this time in the Philharmonic were working the rock groups "Plast" and "Grani", VIA "Alma mater", the theater of the song "Pryvit". But one of the most impressive events of this period is the appearance on the stage of the Philharmonic of the pop artist Valerii Leontiev. From 1982 to 1995, he was working in the Voroshilovgrad (now Luhansk) Philharmonic, as a soloist-vocalist of the pop genre, an artistic director of the vocal-instrumental ensemble “Echo”. It was during this period (1987) that the artist was awarded the title of Honored Artist of the Ukrainian SSR.
In the 90's the Symphony Orchestra was successfully giving music tours around Ukraine. In 1999, the first foreign tours to Italy place had taken a place. Later, the orchestra realised tours with Spain, Austria, Sweden, Belgium, France, Germany, Denmark, Japan, China and Norway.
Comprehensive awareness-building activity of the musical lectorium, successful performances and recognition of the symphony orchestra at the state level, the confering of the titles of "People`s" and "Honored" artist for many represantatives of the Philharmonic, the activity of the children's philharmonic "Rovesnik" – all these are the successes of the Luhansk Regional Philharmonic from 1980 to 2000.
At 2002, the orchestra was headed by Austrian conductor and composer Kurt Schmidt, whose activities began a new phase in the development of the symphony orchestra, the expansion of the repertoire and the tour map of the collective.
During this period, upon an initiative of Kurt Schmid, the Donbass Symphony Orchestra was founded on the basis of the Academic Symphony Orchestra of the Luhansk Regional Philharmonic. The best musicians of the orchestra were included as a compound of the Donbass Symphony Orchestra.
Presentation of Donbass Symphony Orchestra was held on October, 2, 2004,
within the framework of the International Festival of Arts “Salt Symphony”. The first concert in the Soledar salt-mine, at a depth of 288 meters, had a great success. The participants of the concert were worldwide renowned opera singer, soloists of the Vienna Opera, People's Artist of Ukraine Viktoria Lukyanets and under the condaction of Kurt Schmid.
This successful performance within the framework of the "Salt Symphony" project was continued in 2005 in the hall of the National Opera of Kyiv with the participation of Honored Artist of Ukraine Anna Bratus, People's Artist of Ukraine Viktoria Lukyanets and soloist of Donetsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater Yevhen Udovin.
The third performance of the International Festival of Arts "Salt Symphony" was held in 2006, with the participation of the Donetsk Symphony Orchestra musicians, Turkish soloist Erdem Baidar and the choir of the Lugansk National Pedagogical University. As a tradition, the concert was held in the salt mine of Soledar.
Another interesting event, which was by the way organized by the Embassy of the Austrian Republic, was held in 2004, when the orchestra under the conduction of Kurt Schmid performed masterpieces of classic music at the Vienna Ball. The first time took place in the column hall of the Kyiv City Hall, and the second – in 2005 at the National Opera House and ballet of Ukraine. Among the invited guests were diplomats, ministers, politicians, businessmen and prominent personalities.
Accord a thank to the collaboration of Schmid with the Luhansk Symphony Orchestra, in 2005 Ludwig van Beethoven's Ninth Symphony was performed for the first time in Luhansk.
The same program was represented during a concert tour through Austria. It took place under conduction of Kurt Schmid, and artists of the orchestra (with the participation of the soloist of the National Opera of Ukraine Natalia Kisloy, People's Artist of Ukraine Sergey Magery, soloist of the Donetsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater Yevhen Udovin, soloist of the Donetsk Regional Philharmonic, Honored Artist Ukraine Anna Bratus, choir of the Lugansk National Pedagogical University, the choir of the church of Haydn in Eisenstadt and the choir of the city of Klosterneuburg (Klosterneuburg) perfomed at the most famous Austria halls: the large "Golden Hall" Musikverein (Musikverein) – world-famous center of classical music in Vienna, and in the cultural center "Kulturzentrum" Eisenstadt (Eisenstadt) where artists and bands of the highest rank perfomes.
In 2006 the Luhansk Symphony Orchestra performed Mozart's Requiem together with young and talented vocalists Olena Bosenko, Igor Novikov, Natalia Paranych, Andriy Datsenko, as well as with the choir of the Lugansk National Pedagogical University. The premiere concert took place in the city of Luhansk, and then in Austria, the homeland of the prominent composer Mozart. With this program, the orchestra visited Vienna, Rum, Eisenstadt, Innsbruck, Graz. That same year the Symphony Orchestra was awarded the title of "Academic".
In 2007, a number of concerts of the symphony orchestra were held in the framework of the Festival “The days of culture of Austria in Ukraine”, with the support of the Embassy of the Austrian Republic and in honor of the maestro anniversary. The program is included performance of prominent vocalists, condactor – maestro Kurt Schmid.
In 2007, the Luhansk Academic Symphony Orchestra took part in the 50th Festival "Dei Due Mondi", which was founded by Gian Carlo Menotti, the famous American composer of Italian origin. The Festival was regarded as one of the famous culture events in Spoleto and united the best artists from Europe and America. The programs were performed under conduction of David Charles Abel / USA, United Kingdom / Mark Stringer / Austria.
Since 2008, the reconstruction of the Philharmonic building was completed and it was the beginning of the next stage of the creative development. So an ensemble of diverse and jazz music "SOMVO" upstarted, and in 2013 – the ballet "Flame Dance".
2014 is make-or-break year in the life of the Lugansk Regional Philharmonic.
On April 1, 2015, due to the fact of occupation of the city of Luhansk, the regional philharmonic was transferred to the city of Severodonetsk, where it recommenced the activity.
Igor Shapovalov was appointed in a position of director of the Lugansk Regional Philharmonic. Thanks to his hard work, the activity of Academic Symphony Orchestra, music lecturium, cooperation with outstanding artists and conductors from Ukraine and Europe were restored. Later, two new collectives were created on the basis of the Philharmonic – the song and dance Ensemble "Radany" and the pop group "BeZMezh".
As of today, all collectives take an active part in regional events and holidays, create their own solo programs, and constantly realize concert tours.
So that, on March 15-16, 2016, in the framework of the Ukraine-wide Cultural Integration Project "Ukrainian Donbass", instigated by the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine, artists of the Luhansk Regional Philharmonic took part in the arts and culture event "Unbowed Lugansk Region", which was held to overcome cultural isolation and the destruction of the stereotype of the lack of Ukrainian culture in the Lugansk region. As part of this event, on March 15 the Academic Symphony Orchestra of the Lugansk Regional Philharmonic presented a concert program at the National Philharmonic of Ukraine. On March 16 the song and dance ensemble "Radany" of the Luhansk Regional Philharmonic has a performance in the National Museum of Literature of Ukraine.
For the first time after moving to the city of Severodonetsk, the orchestra went on tours to Austria in April, 2016. The artists performed the program of Ukrainian music in Vienna under the conduction of Kurt Schmid, with the participation of well-known soloists in Austria and abroad (Ukrainian opera singer Zoryana Kushpler, soloist of the National Opera of Ukraine Mykola Gubchuk, Austrian violinist Yaromir Babsky).
In Severodonetsk, Luhansk Regional Philharmonic has been cooperating with Western Ukraine within the framework of the project "Change the Country Together". In 2015, under the conduction of Kurt Schmid, there was realised a tour of the Academic Symphony Orchestra to Uzhhorod. The song and dance Ensemble "Radany" had a concert tour through the cities of Lviv region with a concert program "From East to West" in October 2016.
The same year, the artists of the Academic Symphony Orchestra performed the Ukrainian rekvium of the Ukrainian composer Oleksandr Kozarenko in Lviv, Uzhhorod and Ternopil, under the conduction of Nazari Yatsky together with the distinguished Ukrainian academic choir Trembita, soloists of the Lviv National Academic Opera and Ballet Theater named after Solomia Krushelnytska (Svetlana Mamchur, Tetyana Vakhnovska, Oleg Likhach, Igor Mikhnevich). In December 2017, the artists of the song and dance Ensemble "Radany" traveled around the cities of Lviv region with a festive Christmas program.
In 2017, the orchestra has visited Austria two times (Semmering, Vienna, Linz, Salzburg, Krems, Grieskirchen). Together with famous soloists of the Wiener Staatsoper (Zoryana Kushpler, Clemens Witerriner, Olga Bessmertna, Eugene Capitula, Tetyana Diu, People's Artist of Ukraine Yuriy Kirichenko, Laureate of International and Festivals Olena Bosenko) orchestra presented the Austrian listener European and Ukrainian pieces in the framework of celebration of the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Ukraine and Republic of Austria.
In 2018, the orchestra has had a concert tour to Italy under conduction of Nazar Yatskiv, where the collective performed a series of concerts in the framework of New Year and Christmas holidays.
Today, the Academic Symphony Orchestra of the Lugansk Regional Philharmonic has already recorded 14 academic CDs and 3 DVDs.
Conductors and soloists from different countries (Austria, Japan, USA, Spain, Brazil, Germany, Switzerland, Argentina), as well as Honored Artists of Ukraine, Merited masters of the Arts are invited to participate in the programs of the orchestra very often.
The Lugansk Regional Philharmonic constantly supports young artists. Young talents of Ukraine regularly take part in concert programs: pianists, laureates of international, national competitions and festivals Tetyana Belikova, Irina Dotsenko, Viktoriya Shvets, Julia Sherstyuk, Anastasiya Baturova, as well as clarinettist from Japan – Hikaru Kumagai. The Philharmonic also supports own young instrumentalist soloists. There were held many concerts of classic music, where the young workers of philharmonic took part as soloists.
The Luhansk Regional Philharmonic has been cultivating love of art from the first days of it`s existence: it performs programs of Ukrainian composers, invites Ukrainian conductors and soloists to take part in the concerts, popularizes Ukrainian music among Ukrainian and foreign populations.
The pieces of play Ukrainian composers have a critical part in the repertoire of the Academic Symphonic Orchestra; group “BeZMezh” also considers the Ukrainian contemporary song as a priority way for activity, the song and dance ensemble "Radani" popularizes only the national music: Ukrainian folk and modern.
Collectives of the Philharmonic and their artists have been rewarded at various times by Commendations of the Luhansk Regional Military and Civil Administration, the Lviv Regional Council, the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine, and others for a significant personal contribution to the popularization of Ukrainian culture, the high professionalism.
Artists of the philharmonic collectives have repeatedly awarded by honours. So, Viktor Druppov and Tetyana Tsikalovska received the well-deserved title "Honored Artist of Ukraine". The director of the Philharmonic Igor Shapovalov, who has been working in orchestra for many years, takes part at perfomances as a soloist and a member of the collective, was awarded the same honorary award. The honorary title " Merited master of the Arts of Ukraine" was marked by Yevgeny Tutevich – the main conductor of the Academic Symphony Orchestra of the Lugansk Regional Philharmonic.
The formation of the cultural life of the Lugansk region, the constant presentation of the Lugansk region in Ukraine and in the world, the popularization of Ukrainian music, the expansion of listeners' audiences, honorary prizes, cooperation with outstanding artists, composers and conductors Ukraine and Europe – this is a great result of the Philharmonic's work during its staying in the city of Severodonetsk.
Keep on going, the Philharmonic collectives continue to create new programs. The plan for the future – more fascinating concerts, repertoire updates, new concert tours and regular meetings with our favorite viewer