Ballet dancers pose to save soldiers’ lives in Ukraine


Culture, Ukraine

Article by: Olena Makarenko
Edited by: Alya Shandra

Ukrainian ballet dancers of the Krushelnytska Lviv National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet joined the international dance project Ballerina Project, the first part of which took place in Lviv. The pictures of the ballet dancers will be sold in a charity auction, and the money raised will be used to purchase medical products for the Ukrainian battalions which need it the most.

The Ballerina Project was founded more than 10 years ago by a New York-based photographer Dane Shitagi. The first series of photos were taken in New York to show how creative people are changing the area of a metropolis. The majority of ballerinas who had posed for the project were current or past dancers for major theaters and ballets.

Isabella Boylston​ - West 4th Street Courts (bp-11-195)

Isabella Boylston – West 4th Street Courts (bp-11-195)

Over more than a decade, the photographer had made more than 1000 pictures in this series. Moreover, the project set the trend for dance lovers in social media. For example, its Facebook page has more than 800,000 followers.

The first time in Lviv

Lviv dancers were the first participants of Ballerina Project Ukraine. Their next destination is a charity auction in Lviv.

The organizers of the Ukrainian project have a two-fold aim. On the one hand, to demonstrate the creative development of the country and its talented representatives, on the other hand, to show that creative people support Ukrainian military volunteers, whose help is still needed. People visiting the exhibition can both enjoy the works and help soldiers fighting in eastern Ukraine.

“This charity project was suggested to me by Andriy Stanko, a responsible person and professional photographer. The money from sales of his works will be allocated to buy hemostatics for different battalions which need it,” says Olena Komarova, the project’s coordinator.

She explains her motivation to take part in the project by her civil position which leaves no room for indifference:

“After the Revolution of Dignity and with the beginning of the war, ordinary citizens started helping the army and the families of the fallen soldiers in many ways. I stand for the civil responsibility and unity. Especially when talking about youth. If not we, then who will support our brothers at the front?”

Olena takes the example of her acquaintances and friends volunteers:

“When I have an opportunity to help I choose “the help for life” – medicines, things which help to survive, providing help for children who lost their fathers because of the war or if the fathers turned back as incapable.”

Photos by Andriy Stanko

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The exhibition will take place at the end of October (the preliminary date is October 20) in the S. Krushelnytska’s Lviv National Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet.

The organizers of the project are planning to take similar photo sessions in Kyiv, Kharkiv, and Odesa.

Edited by: Alya Shandra

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