Svetilen (RU)

Svetlana Erofeeva (soprano)

Liubov Shagalova (alto)

Dmitri Garkavi (tenor, duduk, gusli, hatamba, hurdy gurdy)

Roman Shakhov (tenor)

Roman Kholodov (baritone, flute, hatamba)

Dmitri Lushnikov (bas, hurdy gurdy)


Artist message:

We kindly invite you the concert of Svetilen! The music performed will evoke numerous emotions, making you cry and smile. Authentic sounds in ancient interpretation are not well known, which is why Svetilen think that it can be very interesting for the audience to hear something new in ancient, orthodox, and Russian music.

About the concert programme:

The program of the ensemble demonstrates a variety of choral styles and genres. Among the most striking examples of the programme we find collegiate choral tradition, Cossack spiritual poems, prayers, laments and holiday Orthodox hymns. Following each other by contrast, they create an amazing, mysterious, and paradoxical sound atmosphere of the Russian Middle Ages. All works are executed in the specific way of singing in the regions where they were recorded by the researchers. The uniqueness of the program is thus due to the long-term research activities of the ensemble.
The concert therefore presents a journey back in time over the vast expanse of ancient Russia and the entire Orthodox world.
The impression is reinforced by the use of ancient musical instruments made by the best masters of Russia using the old instrument-making knowledge. Immerse yourself in the ancient atmosphere through music and costumes based on the old clothes of different classes and regions.

About the artists:

The ensemble of Soul Folk music "Svetilen" was formed in 1989 to preserve the old Russian tradition in singing. This tradition is reflected in two types of singing: church and secular singing. Both evolve around the meaning of the sacred word, which attests to their common "starting point" and the same cultural and musical background. Musical compositions are usually performed a-capella, but sometimes ancient Russian instruments (gusli, koliosnaya lira, duduk and hatamba) are used giving a peculiar sound.

"Svetilen" tries to evaluate this legacy from the view point of modern people and to bring new conceptions to old Russian choral culture. The search for original choral arrangements, rhythmic patterns and harmonies, reflecting the character and forms of sacred and folk music is the main guideline for "Svetilen", aimed at the final objective of adopting stylistic validity.

The specific profile of the ensemble is based upon two characteristic features. First, their sound quality has a distinctive open ethnographical manner, used to perform sacred music. The leader of the ensemble D. Garkavi thinks this quite relevant, following the results of musicological researches. According to him, this is dominant style in old Russia, when neither monks nor congregation had any notion of western academic choral traditions. Secondly, the repertoire of the group is quite intriguing and includes liturgical and sacred folk music. The most original item in the programmme of the ensemble is a set of spiritual chants, arranged by D. Garkavi.

"Svetilen" does not only bring sacred Russian music to contemporary audiences. It is concerned about the genetic memory and the idea of national identity. D.Garkavi and his five professional partners are united in their care about restoration and promotion of living tradition of ancient Russian choral culture.