HAMTRAMCK, Mich. – Cellist Natalia Khoma and Pianist Volodymyr Vynnytsky will perform music made by Ukrainian composers. The two are married and planned to perform in Michigan months ago. When Russia invaded Ukraine, the couple decided to turn the concert into a benefit concert.
Khoma and Vynnytsky live in South Carolina but were born and raised in Ukraine.
“Our heart is broken,” said Khoma. “To see the cities bombed, to see suffering.”
“They kill women, pregnant women, kids, everybody,” said Vynnytsky.
Then, a few days ago, Vynnytsky’s mother, who lived in Lviv, died at the age of 95.
“He could not even come to her funeral,” Khoma said. “She was such a sweet lady. She was an angel. I think she also died from a broken heart from the stress.”
The couple would fly to Ukraine at least once a year; now, they cling to their phone every day, waiting for an update from friends and family.
Playing music is what’s getting them through the heavy times.
“Through the music, we will express ourselves because the truth is what we play,” said Vynnytsky.
While music is their livelihood, Khoma said donating 100% of sales to a Ukraine fund is the least they could do.
“We are here safe, you know, and people over there lost everything,” Khoma said.
The Ukrainian Arts Society is hosting a concert in Hamtramck this weekend to benefit Ukraine.
The benefit concert will take place at 6 p.m. Saturday (March 19) at the Ukrainian American Archives & Museum of Detroit, which is located at 9630 Joseph Campau in Hamtramck.
Tickets are $30 and can be purchased by clicking here. RSVP at 313-366-9764 to speak directly with organizers or leave a message.