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Kyiv Contemporary Music Days

Kyiv Contemporary Music Days is a concert and educational platform for contemporary classical music.

The mission of the KCMD team stands on the idea of co-forming a community around new music, developing its ecosystem, and creating new formats and opportunities for education, professional interaction, and professional self-realization of artists in Ukraine and around the world. 

Things KCMD does are festivals, concerts of the chamber, orchestra, and electroacoustic music, video concerts, masterclasses for composers and performers, lectures (including video lectures) for professional musicians and a wider audience, and projects related to the development of the new music community.

Throughout 2015–2021 we did over 150 events in Ukraine, Portugal, and Japan with musicians from around 25 countries.

Among the performers KCMD worked with are soprano Sarah Maria Sun, Gerald Preinfalk (saxophonist from Klangforum Wien), KONTRA Trio, pianists Ozgür Aydin and Antonii Baryshevskyi, musicians from IEMA—violinist Junya Makino (he’s also a co-founder of KCMD), flutist Yuri Matsuzaki, cellist Milosz Drogowski, Nina Janssen-Deinzer (clarinetist from Ensemble Modern, 2007–2017), and many others. 

As for composers, Åke Parmerud, Alla Zagaykevych, Annette Vande Gorne, Jaime Reis, Maxim Kolomiiets, Mehmet Can Özer, Michael Quell, Sergej Newski, Stefan Prins, Svyatoslav Lunyov, and others contributed to our mission by working with us. 

Throughout the years, we had the privilege to partner up with organizations such as Art Ukraine Gallery (Kyiv), Balassi Institut, CelloBello, Word And Voice Theater Centre (Lviv), Closer art club (Kyiv), Collegium Musicum Lviv, Mystetskyi Arsenal National Art and Culture Museum Complex (Kyiv), Dias de Música Electroacústica festival (Seia–Lisbon), Docudays UA International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival (Kyiv), Cultural Center Dom Master Klass (Kyiv), Goethe-Institut, Impuls festival, initiative neue musik berlin, Kyiv Mohyla Business School, Mezzanine club (Kyiv), Minor Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Lviv Concert House, Mishima Contemporary Music Days, Mizhvukhamy cultural institution (Kyiv), Module EXCHANGE, Muzikalkė space (Vilnius), Naked Room gallery (Kyiv), National Music Academy of Ukraine, National Oleksandr Dovzhenko Film Centre, OSTAR Music Network, IZOLYATSIA. Platform For Cultural Initiatives, Port Creative Hub (Kyiv), Synaesthesis (Vilnius), and National Union of Composers of Ukraine.

After Russia’s large-scale invasion of Ukraine started, we streamlined our activities into two groups:

1. Preserving the Ukrainian musical community (both classical and contemporary classical) by supporting Ukrainian classical musicians. To this end, we’ve started the Support Fund for the Ukrainian classical music community.

2. Presenting Ukrainian contemporary music and musicians internationally. To do that, we’ve organized (or participated as invited guests in) multiple events (live and online) in Europe and North America to present Ukrainian music, shed light on the context in which Ukrainian music finds itself in 2022, on historical events that preceded it, while also presenting the Fund and the needs of Ukrainian musicians based on the analysis of requests to the Fund.


Kyiv Contemporary Music Days festival, Edition 1

11–21 December 2015, Kyiv, Lviv

17 events with 24 participants from eight countries 

Organized by a group of volunteers, and mostly voluntarily joined by the participants of the festival from Ukraine, Germany, Poland, Austria, Japan, Portugal, Spain, and Italy. The festival laid the foundation for two main areas within which KCMD has been functioning since: educational (lectures, master classes, workshops) and concert activities. Since then, the KCMD team has organized 7 festivals—in Ukraine, Portugal, and Japan.


International masterclasses for composers and performers

September 2016, December 2016, September 2017, December 2017, December 2017, September 2018, September 2021 (Kyiv, Ukraine), June 2018 (Lisbon, Portugal)

Partners: Art Ukraine Gallery, Closer, Dias de Música Electroacústica, Goethe-Institut Ukraine, Mezzanine, Minor Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Module EXCHANGE, IZOLYATSIA. Platform For Cultural Initiatives, Port Creative Hub.

The KCMD masterclasses are aimed to strengthen the professional level of composers and performers of any age and nationality, networking and presenting their works within the framework of KCMD events in cooperation with local performers. The framework of masterclasses usually consists of private and group lessons with mentors from several countries, public lectures, rehearsals, and concerts in collaboration with soloists or ensembles (local or invited), also networking events and parties.

Among composers who contributed to the masterclasses as mentors are Åke Parmerud, Alla Zagaykevych, Annette Vande Gorne, Jaime Reis, Junya Makino, Mehmet Can Özer, Milosz Drogowski, Nina Janssen-Deinzer, Stefan Prins, and Yuri Matsuzaki. Throughout the years, over 80 musicians from 20 countries have joined the masterclasses as students. 

Science of Beethoven’s logic

Video lectures series by Mykola Kovalinas

December 2020 – June 2021

With the support from Goethe-Institut Ukraine

“Science of Beethoven’s Logic” is a series of video lectures-conversations about the creative process and the famous “secrets” of the composer who in 2020 turned a quarter of a millennium old.

Presented to over 3,000 viewers in a form of a monthly issue of six series, “Science of Beethoven’s Logic” appeals to the composer’s historical and philosophical counterpart—Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, who also turned 250 that year. And if Hegel created the Science of Logic, then Beethoven is the author of a “science of musical logic,” that is, something that can be understood and taught.

This series of lectures is not about the traditional “what, where, and when,” but about the “how” and, most importantly, the “why.” These questions are distinguished by their extreme abstractness and a significant degree of relativity, as they largely depend on the subjective qualities of the author-researcher himself, who seeks to reveal what has forever remained one of the aspects of the inner, “otherworldly” existence of musical works.



Quarantine music days

In March 2020, in the midst of quarantine that aimed to slow down the spread of COVID-19 in Ukraine, KCMD launched the Quarantine Music Days project with the hope of making the days spent in self-isolation emotional and useful for the community. 

We invited musicians—wherever they were, using whatever technique they had at hand—to create short videos with their own music or with the music of contemporary composers. In addition to making music, the musicians in those videos reflected on a new way of life in self-isolation with its rituals such as a proper hand-washing with soap, helping the elderly, or sometimes just exhaustively killing time within four walls in the apartment, etc. Therefore, we (each in our own way) spread the message that contributing to slowing down the pandemic is both possible and extremely important.

Composers and performers who had been in self-isolation in Kyiv, Kharkiv, Yalta, Baltimore, Shizuoka, and Izmir joined the project.


Funded by the Stabilisation Fund for Culture and Education of the German Federal Foreign Office and the Goethe-Institut. goethe.de

Project team: Les Vynogradov, Albert Saprykin, Mariia Tytova, Polina Horodyska, Daria Vdovina, Dmytro Babenko, Olha Sauh