at war

The Culture Fights Back project to share stories of artists and civil society representatives who have joined the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

In this section, read the stories of modern Ukrainian artists who, at the cost of their lives and health, protect us against Russia’s military aggression in the 21st century.

Andriy Khlyvnyuk

Andrii Khlyvnyuk is a Ukrainian musician and vocalist, known for the popular band BoomBox. 

During Andrii’s university years, he began to admire musical styles such as funk, rock, jazz, groove and reggae. In 2004, together with Andriy Samoilo, he formed the funk group BoomBox, gaining wide popularity in Ukraine and beyond.

At the beginning of the full-scale Russian invasion, Andrii took up arms and began to defend Kyiv from invaders. He recorded an acapella version of the old Ukrainian song Oh, the Red Viburnum in the Meadow (1914). The music video was shot featuring the Cathedral of Saint Sofia in the background —  the song went viral, becoming a symbol of indomitability for millions during the war. South African musician, The Kiffness, remixed the performance, sending all profits from the track to help Ukrainians. Pink Floyd also recorded a cover version of the song – Hey, Hey, Rise Up! – in support of Ukraine.

Andriy has been serving in the Sofia police battalion. Its crew performs combat missions and evacuates civilians from shelling. Khlyvnyuk became an operator of an attack drone, engaging in aerial reconnaissance and combat missions. In March 2022, the singer received a shrapnel wound to the face after coming under mortar fire.

Andrii manages to combine military service with his music, performing worldwide charity concerts and collecting funds for the vital needs of Ukrainians.

1 - TabloID
2 – Boombox Instagram-page