May 06—21, 2023, Soma.majsternia: Musical. Concert vitan’, curated by Olha Marusyn

with: Dmytro Tkalenko, Tamara Tkalenko, Oleksandr Pylypenko, Olena Mordyk, Olha Marusyn, Katya Libkind, Dymetrii Starkgard-Venier, Volodymyr Pylyprenko, Myro Klochko, Oleksiy Min‘ko, Ira Loskot, Tomi Hazslinszky, Larion Lozovyi, Tonya Zelenina, Pušča band

My-musical” (We-Musical) is a vocal-participatory action based at the Kukhnia-Lviv volunteer initiative, Pidsoma shelter and soma.majsternia, all located in what used to be a book factory in Lviv, Ukraine. With the beginning of the full-scale aggression of Russia, the soma.majsternia dance floor turned into a refugee shelter and an emergency kitchen. Soma.majsternia is an organization working with contemporary dance and performance; it was founded in 2019 by a group of self-taught choreographers, artists, and musicians.

Eight months later ten internally-displaced Ukrainians, aged 20 to 60, continue to live on site. Gradually, the arrangement of the common space by the efforts of IDPs and activists took an artistic turn. This culminated in the “musicalresidency” supported by the European institutions (Baltic Art Center, Milvus Artistic Research Center, Swedish Institute). The lack of direction or a clear script encouraged a joint activity even in the absence of a common vision — which, in turn, supported the practices of self-organization and shared responsibility that had emerged in this newly formed wartime community.

The “List of Improvements” sung by the participants of the musical calls into question wartime necessities, the superficiality of culture and the very dynamics of international solidarity. Another story, where self-defense skills are taught by the refugee Volodymyr, collates the narratives of pacifism and productive aggression. IDPs and artists exchange dreams and memories, make wishes, cook food in the midst of constant uncertainty. Ultimately, the musical takes the form of a concert of greetings: a series of empathetic messages between different contexts, generations, and types of experience.

The residency was convened in the frame of the Kindling project co-organised by Baltic Art Center and Milvus Artistic Research Center in collaboration with soma.majsternia and Sorry No Rooms Available and supported by the Swedish Institute and Freefilmers Mariupol.

Curated by: Olha Marusyn
Video: “My-musical” (We-Musical), 2023, HD, 42 min, edited by Myro Klochko

Opening May 5, 7pm

Over the duration of the first weekend after the opening performances by Dymetrii Starkgard-Venier, Oleksiy Minko, Ira Loskot, Tomash Hazslinszky, and Olha Marusyn will take place (to be announced).

On view: May 06—21, 2023