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Music & Songs


See if you can recognize this melody, Dear Reader.

Mykola Leontovych wrote first version of this melody in 1901, but only in 1916 Kievan University chorus officially performed his Shedryk for the first time (press the link to listen)


Ukrainian language is considered to be one of the most melodic in the world. For example, according to 1934 Paris linguistic contest, it was recognised as #3 after French and Persian. Current musicians tend to rank it #2 after Italian though.

Anyway, it's up to you to make your own opinion based on the couple of following examples:


Amrecian singer of Ukrainian origin Kvitka "KC" Cisyk spent her own quarter million dollars to record two discs of beatiful Ukrainian songs. 

(By the way, "kvitka" in Ukrainian means "flower")

(and KC (pronounced as Casey) - are just the initials of her Ukrainian name and surname.)

Here these two albums are:

Songs of Ukriane  &  My Two Colors


The Ukrainian folk songs are so melodic, that many people do not even imagine how they influenced the world modern classic!

Many musicians including Ukrainian-Canadian composer and singer Alexis Cochan believe that the world famous "Summertime" was created after George Gershvin heard

Ukrainian lullaby "Oi, Khodyt Son Kolo Vikon" ("A Dream Passes By The Windows") at a New York City performance by Ukrainian National Chorus in 1929.


To finish the topic of national songs, it needs to be stressed one more time that unlike Russian three-stringed balalaika, the Ukrainian national instrument is bandura which has up to 68 strings.



Of the modern Ukrainian singers, the only group on the post-Soviet territory that manages to constantly attract full stadiums is "Okean Elzy" (Elza's Ocean).

An article in The Economist as of October 2016 is here

Here is their recent concert at 70-thousand Olympic stadium in Kiev for example


For those who prefer English lyrics, there is another Ukrainian cool group named "Hardkiss" and their live concert also in Kiev 


Of the most recent news, the track "Imya 505" ("Name 505") of a Ukrainian group "Vremya i Steklo" ("Time & Glass") was included on the list of a very popular Dance computer game Just Dance 2017.


Movies about Ukraine


The soundtrack to the American movie about Ukrainian Cossaks "Taras Bulba" in 1963 was nominated for Oscar.

Currently Hollywod is about to release in 2017 the movie about Holodomor with actors from "The Game of Thrones'' and Ukrainian actors in it. The movie is called "Bitter Harvest" (please see the link to the official site of the movie).


Of the Ukrainian production, filmed in 1964,  "Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors" is considered a classical one and one of the best movies of its time.


Oleksandr Dovzhenko's "Earth" filmed in 1930 was recognized by UNESCO among 5 World Masterpieces