Principal viola: I fled at four in the morningNews
Having second thoughts about the continued boycott of Putin-supporting musicians? Read this.
Kateryna Suprun, violist in the Ukrainian Freedom Orchestra, writes about her flight from the Russian invasion:
I left my home in Ukraine on the day that war broke out, fleeing my home with my two-year-old daughter, Mia.
We had woken that morning at 4am to the sound of sirens. I was so scared, and Mia was crying. The whole country went into shock …
I packed a few clothes, documents, and my viola, and we shared a car with a friend and her two cats. For two days we drove towards the border with Poland, one phone open on google maps, one on the news, so we could adjust our route to avoid the trouble, and we watched with horror at what was happening to our beautiful country.
It took us another two days to do the last 3km, as there were so many people also trying to leave, both in cars and on foot. But there was a strong sense of community within the terrible situation, with people sharing food, and local villagers bringing water. My daughter didn’t cry once – thank you Peppa Pig!
Once across the border we went to Berlin, to stay with a kind friend, but the early days were difficult. In the beginning I couldn’t play. I would wake up every day at 4am, remembering what had happened, get my phone out and read the news. Every night before I went to sleep I would pray for a Ukraine without sirens or bombs, without killings.
My mum and other family who could, joined us, but the men had to stay. With childcare help, I started to play my viola again and wanted to work. I began playing with other women whose husbands had stayed behind, and slowly but surely we begun to put on concerts…