ORPHEUS vocal ensemble founded in Lviv, Ukraine, in autumn 2000, is a male a cappella group with eight singers. All members are professional singers and musicians, all of them graduated the Higher Musical Academy in Lviv and their diverse musical backgrounds contribute to the musical expression of the ensemble.
The group is flexible in number to expend into different styles of singing. All music are performed a cappella. The main areas of speciality are Orthodox church music (liturgical), folk and popular Ukrainian songs and some examples of original Ukrainian, world music as well as well-known a cappella classics. ORPHEUS also perform new songs – composed and arranged by the group members themselves, all of them featuring surprising and exciting arrangements.
A principal line during group’s performances is based on the full-timbre vocal sound like in the best Slavonic traditions. Their repertoire mixes styles of music ranged from straight harmony pieces with an intricate blend of voices to exciting solo performances with the rest of the group members providing a swinging backing.
From 2001 till those days the group had many successful performances in Ukraine and abroad.
ORPHEUS started its concert activity in early 2001, during the Christmas period in Ukraine. Later, in June, the group greeted Pope John Paul II from Vatican during his visit to Ukraine and in October ORPHEUS was invited to the World Championship of Performing Arts in Hollywood (California, USA).
The first international success came in June 2002, when Orpheus participated at International Church Music Festival in Coventry (England), where they had an extremely enthousiastic welcomed both by the audiences and festival staff. After the festival the group gave a few concerts in Holland and Germany. In August and September 2002, ORPHEUS participated as a guest at XXV International Folk Festival in Wegorzewo (Poland), and at X Jubilee Folk Festival in Sovetsk ( Kaliningrad region, former – Konigsberg), Russia.
In May 2003, ensemble had a concert tour through France along with the dance children ballet “Veseli cherevychky” from Lviv; in June participated in two International Church Music Festivals 2003 in Bern (Switzerland) and in Chester (Great Britain). In July 2003, the ensemble participated in Festival D’ETE in Chaille les Marais in France under the name of “Le Kobza de Galicie” vocal group, and after that festival had a several successful concerts across Vendee-region in France. In November ORPHEUS had the next concert tour through France but in December was invited to Holland as a part of Christmas Proms 2003 program to perform together with Christmas Proms orchestra, choir and other soloists. During that period ORPHEUS had a successful chance to sing in the best concert-halls of Holland including the Concertgebouw (Amsterdam), Nederlands Congrescentrum (Den Haag), De Doelen (Rotterdam). The Christmas Proms concerts were presented by Stardust Theatre BV.
In 2004, ORPHEUS continued to cooperate with “Veseli cherevychky” dance ensemble and had a concert tour throughout the France (Lille, Paris, Vendee-region, Lourdes, Provence) in May. Then, in July – August 2004 the group was heartly welcomed on a series of successful concerts by their friends from Britagne and Vendee regions from France where also participated in two festivals:
5eme Festival d’Ete (Chaille les Marais) organized by Le Jean-Baptiste Theatre de Verdure; and
16eme Festival Musical “Mer at vie 2004”.
In October, 2004 Orpheus participated at TV Festival “Horytsvit” (Ukraine). In November had their first but rather successful concert trip to Italy. In December 2004 the group was again in the Netherlands where they participated in Christmas Proms 2004 concert programs and also had other concerts there. Some of them (like previous year) had place at the best world’s and Holland’s concert halls including: Netherlands Congrescentrum, Den Haag; Concertgebouw, Amsterdam; De Doelen, Rotterdam.
In 2005, the group had some concerts in Italy (February), in March – ORPHEUS participated at International Church Music Festival in Lourdes, France, in May has a concert tour in France with “Veseli Cherevychky” dance group. In June, ORPHEUS returned back from Bern, Switzerland where they participated at ICMF 2005. In August, the group spent two weeks in Vendee, France where they came together with their families, friends for series of concerts and vacation in the same time. This trip was perfectly and warmly organized by Association Vendee-Ukraine (president – Francois Blanchet). In November the group had some concerts in Italy but in December had a long concert tour through France and Holland.
In 2006, ORPHEUS continue its concert activity in Europe. In April, the group had many successful performances in Napoli, Roma, Salerno, Bolzano and other towns of Italy… In May – split concert tour through France with the children dance ballet “Les Joyeux Petits Souliers”. In June the group took part at the International Church Music Festival in Chester, UK; in July had a concert-tour through France, organized by French Association Vendee-Ukraine, in October visited Poland where participated at VI Festival of Ukrainian Sacred songs. In December travelled through France and Holland where had many concerts with a special concert programs.
In 2007, the group had three concert tours in France, one tour in Holland and also participated at church music festival in Switzerland. In autumn 2007, ORPHEUS made the recording of musical DVD-film and managed a big concert project “Autumn Rhapsody” that took place in Lviv on 27 October, 2007.
In 2008, the group participate in Christmas program “Schedryi vechir” organized by Ministery of Culture and Tourism of Ukraine in Kyiv and also has a lot of concerts with Christmas program in Lviv region. On 10 March, Orpheus organized a charity concert program dedicated to the 194 anniversary of birth of great Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko (Lviv theatre). During this concert charitable gathering money for children sick on a leukaemia was carried out. On 11 March, the group participated in the concert program “We are your children, Ukraine”, organized by the Kyiv National University of Culture and Arts taken place at National concert hall “UKRAINA” in Kyiv. This year the group had many concerts in France, Holland and Germany.
In January 2009, the group organized next charity concert during which the charitable gathering money for children sick on a leukaemia was carried out again. On 24 February the group participate on the public concert of the modern composer O.Saratskyy that took place in the National Philarmony of Ukraine.
At the beginning of 2010 Orpheus participate in Ukrainian TV-show “Ukraine Got’s tallents”. In July 2010 the group had been awarded by the medal of St. Nicolas by Patriarch Philaret in Kyiv (Ukraine). In July 2010 for significant contribution to the development and promotion of church music Ukrainian church in Ukraine and abroad, group members have personal honor – the Orders of St. Nicholas from the hands of His Holiness Patriarch of Kyiv and All Rus-Ukraine Filaret. In November same year the group celebrated it’s 10th anniversary with some new show program “History of Music” at the National Opera Theatre in Lviv.
August 2011 – participated in the solemn event celebrating the 20th anniversary of Independence of Ukraine (Lviv National Academic Opera and Ballet theatre named by S. Krushelnytska).
More information about the dates and places of our performances in 2012 please find here.
Except those main events ORPHEUS usually gives concerts in Ukraine and Lviv region on demand. In 2006, ORPHEUS organized two charity concert in Lviv. All money from the concert were collected for the hospital of the children with illnesses of blood and to the children reabilitation centre “Dzerelo”. ORPHEUS also mostly perform in private occasions, sing frequently in different companies’ and organisation’ official events, celebrations as well as in other private parties. ORPHEUS also takes part at Divine Services on Sundays periodically and gives many performances through Lviv region during Christmas celebrations with a special concert program.
By the Decree of the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko on May 4, 2019, all the singers of the Orpheus vocal group personally received the honorary titles “Honored Artist of Ukraine”.
In July, 2001 group released their first demo CD, but in a year in July, 2002 they released CD – “Ukrainian sacred music and Christmas songs”. In November 2003, ORPHEUS recorded a new CD “Popular Ukrainian songs” that was released by Mirasound record company in December 2003. In September 2004 the group recorded theirs third CD by the same company with the popular world’s pieces! This CD – “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” has been released in the Netherlands in December 2004! At the end of 2007 Orpheus recorded and released its first DVD film “Songs from the heart”. In August, 2010 the group released the new album under the title “Lenta za Lentoju” and in 2011 released the double DVD – “Anniversary concert” in two parts. In 2013 Orpheus had a project “Let’s Swing Together” and recorded the live double CD from the concert under the title “Let’s Swing Together” and in 2017 released a new CD of Orthodox sacred music. The latest DVD was recorded in the concert “Christmas in Lviv” in 2018. You can look more closely at our CDs and DVDs, order them or listen and view some music samples and video trailers on our music page.
Gratitude of listeners give a confidence in precision of the selected course that is based on the classical vocal and traditions of Ukrainian choral singing.
“We hope to meet honourers and new friends in order to find a mutual road to the “Temple of Music” – eternal and excellent!”
Ljubomyr Končakivskyj – tenor, leader
Oleh Sadeckyj – tenor
Petro Kukuruza – tenor
Roman Fedoriv – tenor
Petro Petryk – baritone
Andrij Chavunka – baritone (honorary artist of Ukraine)
Semen Pihura – bass
Vadym Suchyj – bass