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English Section

Poland’s Gdańsk joins int’l music project in response to COVID-19

21.05.2020 08:00
The Polish Baltic city of Gdańsk is among 12 cities around the world where a musical piece for carillon will be performed on Thursday at noon local time.
Carillon player Monika Kaźmierczak.
Carillon player Monika Kaźmierczak.Photo: PAP/Tomasz Waszczuk

The international event marks UNESCO’s World Day for Cultural Diversity, Dialogue and Development.

The project brings together carillon players from Poland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Spain, France, Denmark, Norway, the United States, Brazil, Australia, South Africa and South Korea.

They will perform “Healing Bells,” a musical response to the coronavirus pandemic by American composer and carillonist Pamela Ruiter-Feenstra and Dutch journalist Jet Schouten.

The piece is based on an Ukrainian folk song called Plyve Kacha. The title “Healing Bells” refers to an old folk wisdom that bells can ward off disease and doom.

The event in Gdańsk can be followed live in the vicinity of the Town Hall and online on the Facebook page of the Museum of Gdańsk.

It will be the first concert from Gdańsk Town Hall to be broadcast with the use of drones, thanks to which viewers will be able to not only see how the carillons are played but also get a panoramic view of the city.

"Healing Bells" will be performed in Gdańsk by Monika Kaźmierczak.

Gdańsk is the only city in Poland and one of eight in Europe to have carillons.

In addition to the one in the City Hall tower, there is another at St. Catherine’s Church.

The carillon is a musical instrument consisting of a series of up to 77 cast bronze bells (at least 23) played serially from a manual and pedal console to produce a melody, or sounded together to play a chord.