Hamburg Symphony Orchestra commemorates Babyn Yar in Kyiv | Music | DW | 29.09.2016
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Hamburg Symphony Orchestra commemorates Babyn Yar in Kyiv

Nearly 34,000 Jews were killed by German forces at the Ukrainian ravine of Babyn Yar, 75 years ago. The Hamburg Symphony Orchestra is commemorating the massacre with a concert in Kyiv.

"We feel deeply honored that a German orchestra may participate in such a memorial concert," said Daniel Kühnel, director of the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra. The orchestra performs at the National Opera in Kyiv on Thursday (29.09.2016). The concert serves as the climax and conclusion of a week of commemorative events in the Ukrainian capital.

The concert is organized by the association "Ukrainian Jewish Encounter." The conductor, Oksana Lyniv, and the commissioned composer, Yevhen Stankovych, are both Ukrainian. Lyniv is also Assistant Music Director to Kirill Petrenko at the Bavarian State Opera. Stankovych composed the commemorative work "Kaddish Requiem" that will premiere on Thursday in Kyiv.

Ukrainian onductor Oksana Lyniv (Copyright: Oleg Pavlyuchenkiy)

Conductor Oksana Lyniv is Ukrainian

"Kol-Nidrei - Adagio on Hebrew melodies" by Max Bruch as well as "A German Requiem" by Johannes Brahms are also on the program.

Nearly 34,000 Jews killed in 36 hours 

Babyn Yar is the name of the ravine in the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, where German forces murdered nearly 34,000 Jews within 36 hours in 1941. It was the largest mass killing of Jews by Nazis to that date.

It is also estimated that over 100,000 people were later killed at the site during the period Germany occupied nearly the entire territory of Ukraine.

The Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich also wrote a work to commemorate the victims of the massacres, his 13th Symphony, " Babyn Yar," from 1962.

rf/eg (dpa,