Schiller Institute NYC Chorus Pays Tribute to Alexandrov Ensemble

Members of the NYC Schiller Institute Community Chorus sing outside the Consulate of the Russian Federation, December 30, 2016.


On Friday, December 30, me mbers of the Schiller Institute Chorus gathered in front of the Consulate of the Russian Federation in Manhattan to pay tribute to the victims of the Christmas day Black Sea crash of the TU-154 plane carrying nearly the entirety of the famous Alexandrov Ensemble, and several others, including a beloved doctor, Dr. Elizaveta Glinka (“Dr. Liza”) who was on her way to deliver medical supplies to the children of Syria. They sang the Russian National Anthem, which was composed in 1942 by Alexander Vasilyevich Alexandrov, the founder of the chorus.

This performance went viral on YouTube, generating thousands of comments including: “This is what is called human values. These peoples did more for Russian-American relations in several minutes than Obama’s administration for 8 years.”

The performance was done on the same day that the Obama Administration announced the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats and their families to leave the United States within 72 hours, in the middle of the holiday season. Russian President Vladimir Putin responded by inviting the children of U.S. diplomats in Russia to join him for the holidays in the Kremlin. This action, or non-action, by Putin made Obama’s pathetic, shrinking, lame-duck stature all the more obvious to the rest of the world.




Message of Condolence to the Alexandrov Ensemble and the People of Russia

  Alexandrov Choir and Yosif Kobzon sing in Warsaw, October 2009. [photo: Loraine/]

In the name of the International Schiller Institute, I wish to express our deep condolences for the tragic loss of the 92 human beings who died in the plane crash on the way to Syria. This accident is all the more a cause for sadness, as the music and patriotic spirit characteristic of the members of the Alexandrov Ensemble would have brought a message of hope to the people of Syria. This is a population victimized by more than five years of the criminal policies of regime change and treated as the pawns in a geopolitical game in complete violation of their sovereignty.

The Alexandrov Ensemble has been an expression of the highest moral values of Russia and, like Classical choral singing in general, speaks to the soul and the creative potential of the audience. It is therefore extremely important that Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu announced that he is initiating auditions to pick the best talents to fully restore the Alexandrov Chorus.

The training of the singing voice is important for everybody, since a well-placed voice can express the creative intention of the composer and directly speak to the same faculty in the audience. It represents, therefore, an irreplaceable element of the harmonious development of the character. Let me therefore share with you the idea that, in addition to rebuilding the Alexandrov Ensemble, thousands of Alexandrov choruses be established in schools all over Russia to honor the heroic contribution of Russia in the liberation of Syria and, at the same time, broaden the uplifting effect of choral singing to the young generation.

There is a New Paradigm in the process of becoming, as exemplified by the integration of the Eurasian Union and the New Silk Road Initiative, establishing a completely new kind of relations among nations. We need a dialogue of the best traditions of each culture for this New Paradigm to grow into a new era of civilization — the knowledge of the best of another culture will lead to a love for it, and therefore supersede xenophobia and hatred with more noble emotions. In this new era, geopolitics will be overcome forever and the dedication to the common aims of mankind will establish a higher level of reason. It is a reason for consolation for all of us, that the tragic death of the victims of the plane crash contribute with their immortality to the building of that better world.

Helga Zepp-LaRouche
Chairwoman, International Schiller Institute

[This message was received at the Russian Consulate in New York on the afternoon of Dec. 30, and also sent on request to TASS.]

Members of the NYC Schiller Institute Community Chorus sing the Russian National Anthem outside the Russian Consulate in New York on Friday in honor of the passengers, many of them members of the Alexandrov Ensemble.
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