Dnipro Ukrainian Choir
As performers who graced the stage at Pysanka Festival’s inaugural year in 1974, Dnipro Ukrainian Choir is honoured to join in the celebration of the Festival’s 50th anniversary!
Dnipro has a rich history spanning close to seventy years. In 1953, the late Roman Soltykewych and a group of fellow devotees of Ukrainian choral music founded the Dnipro Ukrainian Male Chorus. In 1971, Dnipro became a mixed choir. As conductor of Dnipro Choir, Soltykewych made an important and distinctive contribution to the development and retention of the Ukrainian choral tradition in Canada. At his untimely death in 1976, Maria Dytyniak assumed the baton. In collaboration with former conductor and artistic director of the Kyiv State Opera and Ballet Theatre, the late Maestro Wolodymyr Kolesnyk, Dytyniak led the choir on an increasingly ambitious course, which included the staging of full-scale operas and oratorios, international tours, and numerous collaborative performances with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra.
In 2011, Irena Szmihelsky became Dnipro’s third artistic director and has embarked on new choral experiences with the choir while maintaining the choral calibre established by her predecessors. Under her baton, the Ukrainian Dnipro Ensemble of Edmonton has showcased numerous performances and productions in Canada, United States and Ukraine. The choir continues to feature works of both classical and contemporary Ukrainian composers of Ukraine, Canada and in the diaspora.
The Ukrainian Dnipro Choir of Edmonton is proud to have joined the imperative movement of showing support and hope for our brothers and sisters in Ukraine with their recent fund-raising concert which raised $14,000 for humanitarian needs.