Midway, COVID happened, so we immediately went online, running intimate concerts for people, teams and organisations coming from the most unexpected corners of the world. As a non-profit, we are committed to working with niche artists who do not necessarily fit into the mainstream, and the online format helped us do so: we got to present Belarussian folk tales sung over jazz, experimental flamenco, Brazilian author songs, rural Turkish rhythms, just to boast a few.
When the war in Ukraine started, we mobilised all the artists and the audience we had worked with for a festival “Artists for Ukraine”, within a week collecting over 14 600 euros – that we forwarded without a single commission to charities directly helping Ukraine. We have also started working with artists performing from Ukraine: we are planning yet another concert from Odesa, terrified of the rockets flying over artists’ homes while hoping to help more bands from other cities.
What we do, however, is still an accurate reflection of the Russian roots: a fascination with Moscow’s theatre culture, the quest for the universality of expression, and that thirst for poetry.