2 min read


Dancing, music, eggs, Chernobyl and sovereignty. Ми стоїмо разом з Україною

Something to watch: Ukrainian dance Hopak by Sonechko (Zhytomyr, Ukraine)

The hopak arose as a male dance at the Zaporozhian Sich in the 16th century and gradually spread throughout Ukraine, particularly through the Kyiv region. As it spread it became transformed into a group dance performed by couples with males retaining the lead role.

Something to listen to: Young Ukrainian girls playing the bandura

Because its development closely reflects the history of the Ukrainian nation, the bandura is more than a national musical instrument: It is the voice of Ukraine. From a musical perspective, the bandura unifies acoustic principles of both the lute and the harp. This produces a sound that is emphatic and gentle, resembling that of a harpsichord, but with a wider range of dynamics and tonal control.

Something to strew: Petrykivka Painting coloring pages

Petrykivka painting or just “petrykivka” is a traditional Ukrainian decorative painting, which originates from Dnipropetrovsk oblast of Ukraine, Petrykivka village. Pertykivka painting traditionally decorated house walls and everyday household items, the earliest known samples of it dates back to the 17th century

Something to read: Life goes on at Chernobyl 35 years after the world’s worst nuclear accident

Every April 25, as night deepens, people gather around an angel that stands atop a stone plinth in the northern Ukrainian town of Chernobyl. The angel’s entire body is made of steel—mostly rebar that makes a stark silhouette against the sky—and it holds a long trumpet to its lips. This sculpture represents the third angel from the Book of Revelation. According to the Bible, when that trumpet sounded, a great star fell from heaven, the waters became bitter, and many died.

Something to discuss: How does a country become a country?

International law states that people have the right to determine their own destiny, including political status. Our right of self-determination is enshrined in the UN Charter, and clarified in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. This could be taken as the right to have sovereign statehood recognized by the international community.

Something to try: Pysanka

Simply put, it is an Easter egg decorated using a wax resist (aka batik) method. Its name derives from the Ukrainian verb “pysaty,” meaning “to write.”  (“Pysanka” is the singular form; “pysanky” is plural.) But it is much more than that.  Ukrainians have been decorating eggs, creating these miniature jewels, for countless generations. There is a ritualistic element involved, magical thinking, a calling out to the gods and goddesses for health, fertility, love, and wealth.  There is a yearning for eternity, for the sun and stars, for whatever gods that may be. (Website includes full instructions here)

“Oh, there’s no use in talking to him,” said Alice desperately: “he’s perfectly idiotic!” - Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
drawn by John Tenniel