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Liverpool ONE hosted Ukrainian Christmas performance

3 months ago

By The Guide Liverpool

Liverpool ONE hosted Ukrainian Christmas performance
Liverpool ONE Ukrainian Christmas performance. Picture by Gareth Jones

Liverpool ONE continued the legacy of Eurovision on Friday (8th December), hosting a Ukrainian Christmas performance by members of the city’s Ukrainian community.

Inspired by the Ukrainian tradition of Kolyada, which involves singing carols and greeting people during the festive period, the heartwarming singing and dancing performance took place on Sugar House Steps in Liverpool ONE.

At 4.30pm, visitors to the retail and entertainment destination enjoyed performances from Ukrainian Voice, with a 20-strong adult choir and an eighteen-member kids’ choir, who sung traditional Ukrainian carols, called Koliadky. 

Also performing were a troupe of 12 dancers called ‘Radist’, meaning joy in English, demonstrating a Ukrainian folk dance. 

All performers were dressed in traditional festive costumes and carried octagonal Christmas stars, a popular festive decoration from Ukraine.

Earlier this year, Liverpool hosted Eurovision on behalf of Ukraine, bringing Ukrainian culture to the heart of the city. With links going back decades – Liverpool has been twinned with the Ukrainian city of Odessa since 1957 – the shopping destination is continuing the legacy of the special relationship between Liverpool and Ukraine.

The event follows on from 2023’s Eurovision theme: United by Music. It was planned in collaboration with the Association of Ukrainians in Great Britain’s (AUGB) Liverpool branch, who support members of the community across the UK, many of whom arrived as refugees last year.

Liverpool ONE Ukrainian Christmas performance. Picture by Gareth Jones
Liverpool ONE Ukrainian Christmas performance. Picture by Gareth Jones

Among them was Liudmyla Sergiienko, who arrived in Liverpool with her nine-year-old son last year, leaving behind her husband and parents, to find a safe place for him.

Liudmyla and her son now live with sponsors in Liverpool, and she volunteers with the AUGB Liverpool branch, which aims to help Ukrainians feel at home by offering support and arranging cultural events. 

She said: “Kolyada is what Ukraine is all about; celebrating the country’s language, culture and traditions. The enchanting Christmas carols, Koliadky, signify Christmas in Ukraine – boys and girls prepare carols and verses, taking them from house to house and sharing Christmas joy in exchange for sweet gifts and tips.

“Koliadky are part of the rich Slavic tradition of hospitality, in which the master of the house, the Hospodar, is expected to warmly welcome carollers with bread and salt presented on a decorative rushnyk, a traditional cloth; and in exchange for his generous hospitality, the singers warm his home with glad tidings in song.

“We hope the people of Liverpool enjoyed our performance, as a thank you from us for welcoming us into their city.”

The city’s residents got into the festive spirit, watching the uplifting performances by members of Liverpool’s Ukrainian community and celebrating togetherness as Christmas approaches.

Donna Howitt, Place Strategy Director at Liverpool ONE, said:

“Back in May, the whole city was united by music as we hosted Eurovision on behalf of Ukraine. What better time to revive that incredible spirit of togetherness than Christmas?

“We’re proud to continue this legacy through our work with the Liverpool branch of the Association of Ukrainians in Great Britain, and hope this event and its celebration of Ukrainian culture has continued to help make Ukrainians in the city feel at home.”

For more on Liverpool ONE click HERE.

Get the latest Christmas news for Liverpool HERE and visit our calendar to see what’s on across the city region as the countdown continues HERE.

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