We at Delos thought it was high time we reminded you of our efforts to expose the musical world to Ukraine’s unique native culture and artists. And the first such effort that came to mind was our 2003 collection of Favorite Ukrainian Songs (DE 3274), featuring famed Ukrainian baritone Vassily Gerello with the Moscow Chamber Orchestra under the deft and sympathetic baton of Maestro Constantine Orbelian.
It should come as no surprise to sensitive listeners that there’s a certain Russian “ring” to these largely folk-inspired Ukrainian songs, considering that the cultures of Ukraine and Russia have long been “joined at the hip,” so to speak. Other authentic regional touches are also heard, thanks to the Russian folk ensemble Style of Five, playing instruments like the balalaika and the domra.
These songs are highly appealing and memorable, whatever your own musical heritage may be. They include love songs (“Dark Brows,” “My girl”), nostalgic reminiscences of families and times gone by (“Two colors,” “My dear mother”), songs in praise of nature (“The mountain”), sentimental tear-jerkers (LOTS of those), and even a downright funny number or two (“Dumplings”).
Mr. Gerello, whose unmistakable vocal timbre and exceptional artistry have made him a cherished star of the opera and concert stage worldwide, has graced several other notable Delos releases as well – to include Rachmaninoff’s opera Aleko (DE 3269), Great Scenes from Queen of Spades (DE 3289) and Tchaikovsky’s powerfully moving Coronation Cantata (DE 3196).
We thus invite you to join us at Delos in our celebration of Ukrainian music and culture by giving a listen to the excerpts offered here – and we’ll even make it easy to own this remarkable album, by offering it to you at the very special price of $7.98, through April 22nd.
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