World, Russia-Ukraine War

Ukrainian artists ‘stand strong in face of war’ for our people: Eurovision winner Ruslana

Ukrainian artists ‘have to give our nation a strong message of resilience,’ songwriter tells Anadolu

Emre Basaran  | 25.09.2023 - Update : 26.09.2023
Ukrainian artists ‘stand strong in face of war’ for our people: Eurovision winner Ruslana Photo : ( Arif Hudaverdi Yaman - Anadolu Agency )


Ukrainian singer and songwriter Ruslana, famous for her 2004 Eurovision victory in Türkiye, praised her nation’s artistic community for its resilience in the face of the difficult realities of the ongoing war with Russia.

In an interview with Anadolu in Istanbul, the singer thanked the Turkish nation for their support to their “brotherly Black Sea neighbor.”

Ruslana also gave a preview of her new song and video, meant to keep the spirits of Ukrainians high amid the ongoing war.

“Ukrainian people, right now, resemble a symphony orchestra. They are just waiting for directives from the conductor, and that conductor is their heart,” she said.

“We are constantly surrounded by unreliability and insecurity. There is not a single space that is safe to live in Ukraine right now,” she said, adding that Russian missile strikes on urban areas have become more and more frequent.

She said the art scene in Ukraine has practically come to a standstill due to the war, but artists remain determined to do their bit for the people.

“Music has become quite the weapon during this time of war. Even though concerts are currently banned due to security concerns, I participated in some concerts for humanitarian causes,” she said, adding that one of the concerts was held in an underground metro station.

“We continue to stand strong in the face of war to keep our nation’s spirits high. As Ukrainian artists, we have to give our nation a strong message of resilience.”

Ruslana said that Ukrainians are “not an aggressive nation,” asserting that the war was “unprovoked” and “based on lies.”

“Why are they trying to kill us, just because we exist? Are they trying to kill us because we have a rich literature and art scene, or because we have arable lands?” she said.

“As we talk right now, people are dying in Ukraine. As artists, we have to give the whole world a powerful message,” she said, stressing that the war has to stop.

With her new song and video, Ruslana said she wants to give a message to the world: “Don’t close your hearts.”

“Freedom is what really matters for me. My new video clip tells you to not close your hearts,” she said.

Turkish nation’s valuable support

Expressing gratitude for the Turkish nation’s support to Ukraine and Ukrainians, Ruslana said: “You should know how grateful the Ukrainian nation is to you, especially during this time of war. Your humanitarian aid is saving lives in Ukraine, saving the lives of people like me back home.”

She also likened Ukraine’s resistance to the Turkish War of Independence in the early 20th century.

“The Turkish nation won 100 years ago. As Ukraine, we want to win this war just like the Turkish nation,” she said, while congratulating Türkiye on the centennial of the republic, which will be celebrated on Oct. 29 this year.

The singer also mentioned her victory in the Eurovision song competition, which took place in Türkiye back in 2004.

“I have felt the ties between our two nations strengthen over the last 20 years,” she said, stressing that “the two brotherly nations have grown closer to each other.”

Ruslana said the Turkish nation “mobilized immediately” to help Ukraine as soon as the war broke out, and Ukrainians did the same after the deadly Feb. 6 twin earthquakes in southern Türkiye.

“I spoke Turkish for the first time in my life when the disaster hit, to call for help for the Turkish nation,” she said.

“Because you gave all you had to Ukrainians, we tried our best to return the favor.”

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