The Ukrainian singer conquered the world, he also played an important role when helping his fellow countrymen in need
Andriy Shkurhan was born on November 27, 1961 in the West Ukrainian town of Sambir in Soviet Ukraine. His mother’s family belonged to the Polish-Ukrainian aristocracy, which acquired this status in the 17th century. During World War II, they had to hide their origins from the Nazis and the Communists, and lost their extensive property in Ivano-Frankivsk. His paternal grandfather, who fought against the Bolsheviks in the Polish-Soviet War, was often put in danger by the Soviet Communists. The contemporary witness’s parents met at a music conservatory, and both later pursued music professionally, his father as an opera soloist and his mother as a choirmaster. The contemporary witness originally studied applied mathematics, but eventually also decided to pursue a career in music and graduated from the Lviv National Music Academy. Before the collapse of the USSR in 1991, he began working as an opera soloist in Poland, where he also studied translation at the University of Warsaw. He participated in a number of international vocal competitions, mainly in Europe, winning eleven of them. In 2000 he received the Taras Shevchenko National Prize, which is the highest cultural award, for his successes abroad and for the promotion of Ukrainian folk music. Since 1999 he has also performed in Czech theaters, and later he moved to the Czech Republic permanently. He got married and divorced twice, and his third marriage resulted in the birth of two sons. During the Maidan Revolution of Dignity in 2013 and 2014, he translated the statements of the Ukrainian opposition and sent them to the top political leaders of Poland. After the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022, he organized aid to refugees arriving in the Czech Republic and participated in the community life of his fellow countrymen. At that time he lived in Liberec, where he also worked at the F. X. Šalda Theater.