Ukraine’s Kyiv City Ballet will visit York Theatre Royal on 14th June, with 100% of ticket sales to be donated to UNICEF‘s Ukraine Appeal. The show, understandably, has already sold out but there may be last minute tickets available or you can always donate the price of a ticket to the cause to show your support if you missed out on tickets this time around.
This special gala performance will mark the Kyiv City Ballet’s first UK performance since their country came under attack, so it’s likely to be an extremely emotional evening for everyone.
The performance will be split into two parts, under the direction of Ivan Kozlov and Ekaterina Kozlova. Firstly, a class from the company of the Kyiv City Ballet followed by excerpts from ballets such as Swan Lake and The Nutcracker.
The Kyiv City Ballet have been invited to the city personally by Tom Bird, Chief Executive of York Theatre Royal, after he learnt that the company was stranded in France. The Kyiv City Ballet had been on tour in France as the war broke out in Ukraine and have resided there ever since, with it being too unsafe for them to return home to Ukraine.
City partners in York have come together to make this fundraising performance a reality, with Make It York, City of York Council and York BID supporting York Theatre Royal with organisation and logistics to bring the Kyiv City Ballet to York. Eurostar and LNER stepped in to arrange the company’s return travel from France to York for the fundraising performance, while Visit York members Elmbank Hotel, Malmaison, Middletons, Sandburn Hall, The Grand, The Principal and York Marriott have all offered to accommodate the Kyiv City Ballet company and crew while they’re in the city, with additional hospitality offered from City Cruises and Bettys. The company will also receive a Civic welcome at Mansion House.
First Bus will support on the visa costs to bring the company to York, with remaining costs and company fees for the performance to be covered through corporate sponsorship. Isn’t that just the most magical and heart-warming story? It’s truly spectacular to see so many incredible companies coming together to help such a good cause.
The evening will be a magnificent way for York to publicly show its support for the citizens of Ukraine, while celebrating an incredible evening of dance. 100% of the ticket sales from the performance will go to UNICEF to support people in Ukraine, as nominated by the ballet company. That’s right – 100% of ticket sales. Not all profits, not a percentage but 100% of ticket sales. That’s a truly special thing to achieve and it’s incredible to see York Theatre Royal spearhead the project.
Tom Bird, Chief Executive of York Theatre Royal, said: “It is a huge honour to be hosting Kyiv City Ballet at York Theatre Royal. This is the company’s first UK appearance since their city came under attack, and we are proud that York is able to stand in solidarity with Kyiv by supporting these extraordinary dancers for this one-off visit.”
Sarah Loftus, Managing Director at Make It York, said: “We are so proud of our city pulling together to bring the Kyiv City Ballet to York. This is a special opportunity to celebrate world-class performers, while raising vital funds for the people of Ukraine. The generosity of businesses and residents in York has made this possible.”
Councillor Darryl Smalley, Executive Member for Culture, Leisure and Communities, said: “In what are incredibly dark times, it has been heartening to see York’s response as the city has come together to show our support and solidarity with our Ukrainian friends here in York and in Ukraine. From donations and heart-warming signs of solidarity to housing refugees, it’s clear that we as a city are united and ready to do all we can to stand with Ukraine and its people.”
Andrew Lowson, Executive Director at York BID, said: “It is always good to hear of high quality cultural offerings coming to York, but for our City to attract the Kyiv City Ballet will feel really special. Many of us feel helpless on how we can support Ukraine, but I know residents and businesses will want to show support and solidarity, as well as celebrate the visit of a world-renowned group of performers.”
Adam Wardale, Chair of Hospitality Association York (HAY) and General Manager at Middletons Hotel, said: “The members of HAY are incredibly proud to be able to offer Ukraine’s Kyiv City Ballet performers accommodation throughout their stay in York. This is a fantastic opportunity to support Ukraine, whilst also celebrating the arts, and I would encourage people to attend the show and show their solidarity.”