Dnipro Ukrainian Choir
Sunday, July 3
Dnipro Ukrainian Choir 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 introduced the choir to new choral experiences while maintaining the calibre established by her predecessors. Together with assistant conductor, Gloria Zaharia, and collaborative pianist, Irena Tarnawsky, she has led the choir to successfully showcase diverse concert programs of newly commissioned works and repertoire from a rich repository of Ukrainian choral music of all genres.