To begin with, could you introduce yourself and give me an idea of your musical background and early influences?
My artist name is Egor Grushin, I’m from Ukraine. I am a neoclassical pianist and my career was highly influenced and inspired by musicians Ludovico Einaudi and Philip Glass and bands Muse and Okean Elzy.
Your chosen instrument is the piano, how has your compositional process developed over the years?
The pillars of my compositional process are harmony and melody. My music is not that complicated technically, but it always has a great deal of soul and a story within. It is able to set a certain mood and make you feel something that is not necessary around you.
How would you introduce Lviv to a tourist and which are your favorite things about it?
In my opinion Lviv is the best city in Ukraine. Its rich history, mind blowing architecture and kind people have been always contributing to my ability to create and to maintain an artistic mindset.
How would you describe the experimental music scene in your own city and in Ukraine in general?
Music is definitely a vital part of our culture. Our experimental scene is broad, full of unprecedented mixes and unexpected takes. Being bold is in our blood and you can absolutely sense it in our music.
How has the live scene been impacted by the pandemic in the past couple of years and has lockdown curtailed your creative life?
Yes, pandemic hit our musical scene as hard as it did around the world. In 2019 I had a Ukrainian concert tour supporting my album “Ritorno”, followed by a set of gigs in China and I had another tour for 2020 already planned but pandemic started and everything halted. Before 2020 I was doing around 40 live shows per year but since march 2020 I managed to only perform 6 times but it is what it is. We need to save lives first of course. Despite the circumstances though I keep writing music and releasing new material, no virus can change that.
Granted that the situation on the ground is evolving very quickly and dramatically, could you give us a sense of the current state of play on a day to day level in your own city in terms of transport, food chain supply, medical care? And what have been the more immediate changes in your life on a personal level?
The western part of the country right now is not suffering by active shelling or military actions but we’re busy with providing 24/7 support for our army and helping refugees from other regions. At this moment we have food and medicine, provided both by my country and our European partners that keep actively helping us with fighting Russia. As for me personally, together with my friends, I have enrolled into the Civil Defense force and we’re trying to keep Lviv safe and free from Russian spies and infiltrators.
What can one do to help the artistic community in Ukraine? And on a more general level, are there any local charities that operate in your town/region you would like to highlight?
The usual stuff really. Keep listening to our music on streaming services, support us on Patreon and Bandcamp. Follow us on social media and make sure the world knows our music, we’ll need that after the war is over. In the near future our country will be focused on rebuilding the cities destroyed by this Russian war and unfortunately live shows or festivals won’t be on the menu here but we will be glad if there will be a chance for me and my fellow musicians and artists to perform abroad.
If you want to help us win this war, support people who became refugees or lost their loved ones, you can donate to Savelife fund