The Royal Danish Theatre will host a Gala for Ukraine on 19 March 2022.
Danish lawyer Philip Maury has managed to organise the event in the space of a few days to raise funds for the Red Cross' efforts helping victims of the war in Ukraine. He has gathered a team of dancers from The Royal Theatre, Kammerballetten and Verdensballetten.
Coming together on stage are some of the Royal Danish Theatre's most accomplished artists, who together with international guests and musicians from The Royal Danish Orchestra, will present an evening of ballet, opera and classical music.
Ukrainian prima ballerina Iana Salenko will be performing. Born and raised in Kyiv, and educated in Donetsk, she is now a principal dancer with the Staatsballet Berlin. Salenko lives with her husband and children in Berlin, but her family, friends and colleagues still live in Kyiv, and several of them have not yet left the city. Joining her on stage are Alban Lendorf, Andreas Kaas, Caroline Baldwin, Astrid Elbo and other artists from The Royal Danish Ballet. Opera singers Yana Kleyn and Nicolai Elsberg will also take part, and pianist Alexander McKenzie, cellist Jacob la Cour and violinist Adam Koch Christensen will also perform, alongside musicians from The Royal Danish Orchestra.
His Excellency The Ukrainian ambassador to Denmark Mykhailo Vydoinyk and his wife will participate as guests of honour.
The programme will show excerpts from Swan Lake, Balanchine's Jewels and Bournonville's A Folk Tale, alongside newer choreographic work by Paul Lightfoot and Tobias Praetorius, as well as The Dying Swan. The opera repertoire is represented by arias from La Boheme, Tosca and The Magic Flute. Musicians from The Royal Danish Orchestra will perform under the baton of the orchestra's guest conductor Paolo Carignani.
Organiser Philip Maury does not have a personal or professional relationship with Ukraine but has taken the steps to make the evening possible. He says,
It is quintessential that we help the victims of this war now! First and foremost the children, women and families. The innocent are always the first to suffer, and it is our duty to support them. There are many ways of offering this support, and although the basic need for safety, shelter and warmth for those enduring or fleeing the war must be taken care of first, I wish to rally the transformative and marshalling power of the performing arts, to show the world light where there is darkness, and of course to raise funds to support these humans desperately in need of our help. I wish to show them that they are not forgotten and that we are fighting for them on all fronts. Also with the arts!.
It is for this reason that Maury has rented The Royal Danish Theatre and asked some of his favourite artists to perform. All expenses have been paid for by Maury, and all the artists have waived their fees so that the total ticket revenue will benefit the Red Cross' work with the victims of war.
The Royal Danish Theatre, Old Stage – Saturday 19 of March 2022 at 8.30pm
Tickets are now on sale:
Iana Salenko, principal, Staatsballett Berlin
Alban Lendorf, principal, Royal Danish Ballet
Andreas Kaas, principal, Royal Danish Ballet
Caroline Baldwin, principal, Royal Danish Ballet
Astrid Elbo, soloist, Royal Danish Ballet
Sebastian Haynes, soloist, Royal Danish Ballet
Stephanie Chen Gundorph, soloist, Royal Danish Ballet
Rikako Shibamoto, Royal Danish Ballet
Yana Kleyn, soprano
Nicolai Elsberg, bass
Jacob la Cour, cello Alexander McKenzie, piano Adam Koch Christensen, violin
Musicians of The Royal Danish Orchestra
Conductor: Paolo Carignani
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.