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Conductor Hirofumi Yoshida Launches Crowdfunding Campaign to Bring Odesa National Academic Opera and Ballet Theater Performance to Japan

File photo / Courtesy of the Odesa National Academic Opera and Ballet Theater
Hirofumi Yoshida conducts an opera at the Odesa National Academic Opera and Ballet Theater in Odesa, southern Ukraine, on Sept. 10, 2023.

Hirofumi Yoshida, principal guest conductor at the Odesa National Academic Opera and Ballet Theater, launched a crowdfunding campaign on Monday to fund orchestral performances by the opera house in Japan. The theater is located in Odesa, southern Ukraine, an area currently facing a Russian aggression.

Based in Italy, Yoshida, 55, became the principal guest conductor of the Ukrainian opera house in 2021. In September last year, following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, he visited Odesa to conduct an opera and witnessed the audience being moved to tears.

“[That experience made me] feel a strong desire to bring Ukrainian music to Japan,” he said.

Yoshida aims to raise between ¥10 million and ¥30 million through crowdfunding. The amount raised will determine the scale of the orchestra and the particular venues of the performances. The crowdfunding campaign is underway on a website operated by Readyfor, Inc. and will run through Feb. 29. S-class seat tickets and the opportunity to conduct during rehearsals are two of the rewards planned for donors.