World famous Ukrainian musical group DakhaBrakha returns to Artpark

Thu Jul 7, 2022 8:40 PM

To perform original music live at the screening of Alexander Dovzhenko’s iconic silent film “Earth”

√ Talkback with Bruce Jackson, professor and film scholar at the University at Buffalo, will follow on July 14 at the Mainstage Theater

Artpark & ​​​​Company presents the return of DakhaBrakha from Ukraine, to perform live the musical accompaniment of the silent film “Earth” by Alexander Dovzhenko. This event is scheduled for 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 14 at the Mainstage Theater. The screening and performance will be preceded by a reception by the Ukrainian and Polish American community of Western New York to benefit humanitarian relief efforts.

General admission tickets are $12 and are on sale now at the Artpark box office (450 S. Fourth St., Lewiston) and online at ticketmaster.com.

A press release noted that DakhaBrakha is “back to Artpark after an unforgettable concert in 2019.

He continues: “DakhaBraka, an “ethnic chaos” group, hails from Kyiv, the war-torn capital of Ukraine. With their traditional multicultural instrumentation, theatrical costumes and surprisingly powerful vocal range of the quartet, they create a transnational sound rooted in Ukrainian soil. Currently on a world tour shortly after the start of the war, they have garnered critical acclaim and a large global fanbase since their formation in 2004, and perform regularly at the world’s most important venues and festivals.

“To live the quartet is an unforgettable and rare gift.”

Solely for Artpark on this North American tour, DakhaBrakha is providing the live musical score for a screening of the 1930 Ukrainian silent film “Earth”. Directed by Alexander Dovzhenko, “Earth” is considered one of the most important films of the Soviet era. The press release read: “Dovzhenko is a master of composition and the film is a passionate tribute to the countryside, nature and the people who work there.

“In a striking parallel to current events, ‘Earth’ captures a moment when traditional rural life in Ukraine was on the verge of massive upheaval due to overwhelming political forces. It was named one of the top 10 films of all time by the International Film Critics Symposium.

The band had this to say about creating their soundtrack for “Earth”:

“Making music for Alexander Dovzhenko’s ‘Earth’ was a great honor for us and a difficult creative challenge. Frame by frame, this Ukrainian masterpiece of world cinema impressed us every time we worked on it. No matter how we tried to work on the film as an autonomous artistic enterprise, avoiding ideological evaluation, we couldn’t. Of course, we expressed the film in 21st century human terms, while being aware that after 1930, when the work was completed on “Earth”, came the Communist famine years of 1932-33, the years of repression, and we know the difficult fate of the socialist empire Dovzhenko. Together we have tried to convey the authenticity, but also the naivety, of these feelings and messages brought from that time and time, to us today and to our Earth.

The performance will be preceded by a reception hosted by the Ukrainian and Polish American community of Western New York to benefit humanitarian relief efforts.

A discussion session with Bruce Jackson will follow. He is SUNY Professor Emeritus and James Agee Professor of American Culture at the University at Buffalo, and a well-known author, ethnographer, and photographer. For the past 22 years, he and Diane Christian (SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor at the University at Buffalo) have organized and presented the Buffalo Film Seminars.