MOSCOW, December 9 (Sputnik) – World-acclaimed Russian opera singer Anna Netrebko has donated 1 million rubles (about $19,000) to the Donetsk National Opera and Ballet Theatre, Russian news website Gazeta.Ru reported.
“I have colleagues in Donetsk, young musicians, whom I talk to. They told me that the theater is partially destroyed, it is cold in the theatre, but they still go on scene,” Netrebko said while making the donation, “I decided to help because art always supports people in any situation. And help is especially needed where culture is being destroyed.”
Netrebko stated that the donation should not be considered a political move, saying “I support only art and think that the war must end as soon as possible.”
The donation was done as part of a fundraiser for the theater during the 3rd International Cultural Forum in St. Petersburg, according to newspaper Argumenty i Fakty. Netrebko gave a certificate with the sum to Oleg Tsarov, founder of the Ukrainian Refugees Union, former Ukrainian Rada deputy and former Ukrainian presidential candidate, who currently holds a largely titular role as the speaker of the Novorossia parliament.
In return, the Donetsk Opera invited Anna Netrebko to perform at its theater during the Spring season, the Russian News Service reported. The theatre’s director told reporters that the theater’s employees have not been paid since June and that its decorations burned down as a result of military operations.
Anna Netrebko is a soloist operatic soprano singer at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, and was named one of Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people in 2007.