Las Vegas: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky made a surprise appearance at the 64th Grammy Awards, held at Las Vegas’ MGM Grand Marquee Ballroom. At the show, he was urging support for his country and asking the industry’s top artists to “fill the silence” brought by war with music.
Ahead of the performance from John Legend of the song “Free,” joined by Ukrainian singer Mika Newton, musician Siuzanna Iglidan and poet Lyuba Yakimchuk, a pre-taped message by Zelensky was played at the event.
In his address, he said, “What is more opposite to music? The silence of ruined cities and killed people.. Our Children Draw swooping rockets, not shooting stars. Over 400 children have been injured and 153 children died. And we’ll never see them drawing. Our parents are happy to wake up in the morning. In bomb shelters, but alive.”
“Our loved ones don’t know if we will be together again. The war doesn’t choose who survives and who stays in eternal silence,” he said.
Speaking of musicians he said that they sing for the injured at the hospital. He said, “Our musicians wear armor instead of tuxedos. They sing to the wounded in hospitals. Even to those who can’t hear them. But the music will break through anyway.”
He further added that we defend our freedom to live, to love, and sound. On land, they are fighting with Russia which brings horrible silence with its bombs. The dead silence.
He said, “Fill the silence with your music! Fill it today, to tell our story. Tell the truth about this war on your social networks, on TV. Support us in any way you can. Any – but not silence. And then peace will come.”
“To all our cities the war is destroying – Chernihiv, Kharkiv, Volnovakha, Mariupol, and others: They are legends already, but they have a dream of them living, and free.”
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