8th INTERNATIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL
31 May – 4 June
9 – 13 June 2022
The Odessa Classics Festival will be hosted this year in Thessaloniki and in Tallinn.
The Odessa Classics Festival of Classical Music, a leading cultural event in the field of classical music, will be hosted in Thessaloniki, from 9 to 13 June 2022, organized by the State Conservatory of Thessaloniki.
As the Russian invasion of Ukraine made it impossible for the festival to take place in Odessa this year, the Minister of Culture and Sports Lina Mendoni immediately responded to the proposal of the artistic director of the Festival Alexey Botvinov, to take over the main body of events in Thessaloniki.
The decision of the Minister of Culture and Sports to finance the State Conservatory of Thessaloniki, in order to organize the Odessa Classics Festival, is a proof of the cultural solidarity of Greece towards the Ukrainian people and especially towards the city of Odessa, which is connected with deep historical ties with Greece.
In his letter to Lina Mendoni, the Minister of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine Oleksandr Tkachenko writes: "Let me express my deepest respect for you and thank you for the kind support and solidarity shown by your country to all the Ukrainians, during these difficult hours of the unprovoked war of the Russian Federation against peaceful Ukraine. Today, Ukraine is facing a difficult battle for democratic values and its right to freedom. The Odessa Classics Festival, one of the pivotal platforms for classical music in Ukraine, is fighting its own battle for survival. I am sure that the Odessa Classics Festival in Thessaloniki, as a high quality music event, will be another step towards the mutual understanding of our peoples and will help the Ukrainian musicians to be heard in the concert halls of Europe".
In her response to her Ukrainian counterpart Lina Mendoni notes: "The Russian invasion not only targeted the Ukrainian state, but also severely curtailed citizens' access to artistic creation, which is a pillar of freedom and prosperity. Since the organization of the Festival in Odessa this year became impossible, the Greek Government through the Ministry of Culture and Sports decided to offer temporary housing to your important artistic institution, hosting it in Thessaloniki. Odessa hosted the Greek intelligentsia and was the matrix of the rebirth of the Greek Nation. Two centuries later, as Ukraine fights for its freedom, Greece returns the hospitality in order to keep alive one of its most important cultural assets. The Odessa Festival of Classical Music, "a European Festival for a European City", reinforces Odessa's ties with Europe and the Ukrainians' expectation for a European future. Violence has never succeeded in overpowering Art in human history. We will not allow it today either. I hope this is the first and last time that the Odessa Classical Music Festival is looking for a home elsewhere. We look forward to the return of peace so as to watch the 2023 Festival in Odessa."
Alexey Botvinov, Artistic Director of the Odessa Classics Festival, emphasizes: "The historical correlation of Odessa support to the Greek liberation struggle two centuries ago with today's offer to return this hospitality to our suffering nation, is one of the most moving and substantial cultural acts of solidarity of any government friendly to Ukraine, from the beginning of the invasion".
The violinist and composer Simos Papanas, concertmaster of the Thessaloniki State Orchestra, artistic consultant of the "Odessa Classics" Festival and responsible for its organization in Greece invites the people of Thessaloniki "who have the hospitality deeply rooted in us - to make our distinguished guests feel it. We musicians are by nature against every war. It's time to prove it in practice!"
The first part of the festival events will be hosted in Estonia from 31 May to 4 June, followed by Thessaloniki concerts. Details of the program of the Festival will be announced in the near future.
The 8th ODESSA CLASSICS in EUROPE Festival will begin in Tallinn.
Due to the Russian aggression, it will not be possible to hold the classical music festival Odessa Classics this year in Odessa, at least not in June. Therefore, the festival will take place this year in Europe, starting on a smaller scale from 31 May to 4 June in Estonia – in Tallinn, the capital, in Tartu, and at the Arvo Pärt Centre in Laulasmaa.
Against the backdrop of the new situation in Ukraine, the VIII International Music Festival Odessa Classics is expanding its geography this year. The start of the festival will take place in Estonia, and the main part of Odessa Classics 2022 will take place on June 9 - 13, in another friendly European country, the exact place will be announced very soon.
According to Alexey Botvinov, President of Odessa Classics, the festival in Odessa has been postponed for as short a time as possible and as long as necessary until this blatant aggressor is finally repelled from Ukrainian territory.
“We made this inevitable decision with heavy hearts, but on the other hand with great gratitude to our European partners. Festival will start this year in Estonia. On initiative of our Estonian friends the various concert venues of this country will become the temporary home of the festival in the last days of May and the first days of June. Our partners in Tallinn are the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra which was to open this year's festival in Odessa, and our long-time friend Meelis Kubits, Head of Kultuuripartnerlus SA (Cultural Partnership Foundation). It is very important for us that the tradition of the festival is not interrupted, and we take every opportunity on the European stages to talk about the injustice that the aggressor is doing against the state and people of Ukraine. We are working with our partners on continuation of Odessa Classics this summer in other European location, we hope to announce this great news very soon. Now we express our gratitude to our Estonian friends. Our very first festival in 2015 was possible and became very successful with big help of our Estonian friends. And its very symbolic that now again Estonia gives us friendly support, its priceless ”, Botvinov said.
The festival will be officially opened on 31 May at the Estonia Concert Hall in Tallinn, featuring the Odessa Classics Artist-in-Residence Daniel Hope, Alexey Botvinov, and the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra conducted by Olari Elts. On 1 June, the International Children's Day, brothers Roman and Oleksandr Fediurko will perform at Tallinn Song Festival Grounds as part of a charity concert. On 2 June, Michael Guttman and Jing Zhao, and Alexey Botvinov will perform at Arvo Pärt Centre dedicated to the world-famous composer. On 3 June, the festival will move to Tartu with Alexey Botvinov and Hans Christian Aavik, Estonian violin talent and winner of the recent Carl Nielsen Competition, performing at the Heino Eller Tartu Music College.
The Odessa Classics Tallinn program is available in Ukrainian, English and Estonian on the website www.odessatallinn.com Tickets for all concerts are sold there. If you are interested, you can attend the concerts also via ERSO TV.
For Ukrainian viewers all concerts will be available via video streaming, free of charge.
Danel Hope: "Thrilled to announce a closer artistic relationship with the splendid Odessa Classics Festival from 2019. Alexey Botvinov and his team have done a wonderful job of building up this festival in a beautiful and historic city. And it is both extremely humbling and inspiring to think of many of my musical heroes and their role in Odessa‘s musical life: Pyotr Stolyarsky, David Oistrakh, Nathan Milstein, Boris Goldstein, Emil Gilels, Sviatoslav Richter, Zakhar Bron and many more. Looking forward to more music in Odessa!"
Odesa Opera House
1 Tchaikovsky Lane
15 Bunina Street
1e Marazliivska Street
of Western and Eastern Art
9 Pushkinska Street
Odesa Fine Arts Museum
5а Sofiivska Street
Cathedral of the Assumption
of the Blessed Virgin Mary
33 Katerynynska Street
Odesa Stolyarsky Special Music School
1 Sabaneev mist Street