Grammy winner Nadia Shpachenko released an album in support of Ukraine

Надія Шпаченко

The Ukraine-origin American pianist Nadia Shpachenko has released a new album — Invasion: Music and Art for Ukraine.

The release includes the works of the American composer, Pulitzer Prize winner, Lewis Spratlan: Invasion (for piano, saxophone, horn, trombone, percussion and mandolin), Piano Suite No. 1, Six Rags for solo piano, Two Sonatas for solo piano, Wonderer for solo piano.

According to Nadia, the recording of an album with music of Lewis Spratlan was planned before the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine begun, but on February 24, the concept of the release changed:

“Watching in horror as my home city of Kharkiv was being destroyed, I resolved to express through music my feelings of despair and anger, as well as hope and resilience. On my birthday in February 2022, the war started, Lewis Spratlan began writing INVASION, and the character of our plan for a CD of his works shifted. Positivity, defiance, perseverance, peace, nostalgia, recollections, and hope – all are displayed by the people in Ukraine, and all are reflected in the pieces on this disc.” — Nadia Shpachenko

Lewis Spratlan and Nadia Shpachenko have been working together for seven years, since the pianist commissioned a piece from the composer for her previous album, The Poetry of Places, devoted to the connection between music and architecture. In his composition “Bangladesh”, Spratlan reinterpreted the transformation of the city’s space that changed due to the government center built by architect Louis Kahn. In 2020, the album “Poetry of Places” won a Grammy.

“Nadia’s performance was spellbinding, combining the muscular portrayal of a collection of massive buildings with the subtlest rendering of tenderness and intimacy. This emotional range is what drew me so strongly to Nadia’s artistry. It is on full display in the five works of this CD. The monstrous cruelty of war in Invasion, the intricacy and athleticism in Piano Suite No. 1 and Two Sonatas, the humor and occasional violence in Six Rags, and the enveloping and multi-dimensional humanity of Wonderer show an artist in full command of the communicative power of music.”Lewis Spratlan

For the booklet’s design, Nadia Shpachenko commissioned works from Ukrainian artists: Yurii Nagulko, Lesia Babliak, Kati Prusenko, Olena Papka, Aza Nizi Maza Studio children artists, art direction by Mykola Kolomiyets.

“I commissioned Ukrainian artists to create paintings/artworks to use in this booklet and in the accompanying music videos, as their responses to the music. Also featured are drawings/artworks made by children in Kharkiv, as their responses to the war”. — Nadia Shpachenko

Proceeds from this album will be donated to Ukrainian humanitarian aid organizations.

Read also:

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Antonio Greco: “I had only one way to demonstrate that I am really with you”

About the Author

The Claquers is a Ukrainian online magazine devoted to classical music that unites a group of music critics with the mission to foster a critical conversation about art music in Ukraine and beyond. The Claquers organization was founded in June 2020 by musicologist Stas Nevmerzhytskyi and three colleagues: musicologist Dzvenyslava Safian, music theorist Liza Sirenko, and cultural critic Oleksandr Ostrovskyi.

The publication’s provocative name suggests the context in which The Claquers was conceived. After two previous generations of proactive critics who had careers in education and cultural promotion, classical music criticism was limited to either positive reviews or no reviews at all. A fresh and uncensored eye on events in classical music life in Ukraine was needed to shake up the musical community and complete the country’s classical music ecosystem.

Unlike in western Europe and North America, art music audiences in Ukraine are much younger. The collective of writers with The Claquers is also young, and has taken on the task of explaining to these new listeners why a long tradition of classical music in Ukraine exists, and how it became a part of today’s cultural life. As a group The Claquers considers its main goals: to educate about contemporary classical Ukrainian music, to build bridges with popular culture by publishing about diverse musical genres and other arts (such as music in literature or in film), to expand the critical tools of music criticism with audio podcasts, and to cultivate audiences abroad via an English version of the website.

The Claquers was made possible by generous funding that enabled its establishment and is sustained by the generosity of donors on Patreon. This singular and engaged Ukrainian online hub devoted to classical music continues to engage people in this music and invite new authors.

Stas Nevmerzhytskyi (ФОП Станіслав Невмержицький), individual proprietor

The registration number of the taxpayer's registration card, or the series and number of the passport:

Location of a individual proprietor:
Ukraine, 04212, Kyiv city, TYMOSHENKA STREET, building 2K, room 302

Date and number of entry in the Unified State Register of Legal Entities, individual proprietor and public organizations:
10/16/2020, 2000690010002052048


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