Ukraine’s victory on the Eurovision Music Contest introduced nationwide pleasure, pleasure and creative status to the rustic amid the devastation of battle. Now, it’ll additionally assist provide drones to the Ukrainian military.
Kalush Orchestra, the Ukrainian band that gained Eurovision after sweeping the phone-in standard vote, put its trophy and the crimson bucket hat worn through its lead singer throughout the competition up for public sale, and the pieces netted greater than $1.2 million, the band’s spokeswoman stated in a commentary on Monday.
“We consider that that is handiest the primary victory earlier than our largest victory over the Russian aggressor,” Oleh Psiuk, the band’s lead singer, stated in a Telegram message.
The cash goes to the Serhiy Prytula Charity Basis, a company based through a Ukrainian TV presenter, and will probably be used to shop for 3 drones that the military can use for surveillance, stated Maria Pysarenko, a spokeswoman for the root.
The trophy, a home made glass microphone designed through the Swedish artist Kjell Engman, used to be auctioned in cryptocurrency, Ms. Pysarenko stated.
WhiteBIT, a cryptocurrency change platform firstly from Ukraine, secured the trophy on Sunday for $900,000 following competing bids within the closing mins of the public sale from businessmen from Kalush — the Ukrainian town Mr. Psiuk is from — and a charity fund from Washington.
“It’s a large quantity, however we take into account that the purpose is far larger,” stated Margarita Populan, a spokeswoman at WhiteBIT, including that her corporate had labored to offer and coordinate fortify for Ukraine because the starting of the battle.
The winner of the bucket hat “with the sweat and tears of Oleh,” as Mr. Prytula described it, used to be selected at random in a separate raffle, the place every price ticket price 200 Ukrainian hryvnia, or lower than $7. Greater than 30,000 other folks participated, elevating greater than $300,000.
Volodymyr Onyshchuk, a Ukrainian IT engineer dwelling within the Czech Republic who’s a typical donor to Mr. Prytula’s charity, gained the prize. He stated in a telephone interview that he had purchased a number of tickets as a result of he concept it used to be “a fab scenario,” including that he deliberate to take a “image for Fb” with the hat earlier than donating it to a museum in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, or in Kalush.
After profitable Eurovision, Kalush Orchestra prompt its lovers to turn fortify through donating to assist the Ukrainian military. “Each euro you donate will assist save the lives of Ukrainian squaddies!” the band wrote in an Instagram submit selling the public sale.
Eurovision’s laws state that this is a “nonpolitical tournament,” however the festival hasn’t ever been in point of fact remoted from international politics.
Kalush Orchestra’s profitable tune, “Stefania,” used to be written to honor Mr. Psiuk’s mom. Whilst it does now not have openly political lyrics, it’s been reinterpreted as a patriotic hymn to Ukraine as a motherland.
After the competition, the band launched a track video for “Stefania” that displays wrecked structures and girls squaddies wearing kids amid the rubble, in a transparent connection with the battle. It’s been considered just about 20 million instances.
“If Stefania is now the anthem of our battle,” Mr. Psiuk wrote within the video’s caption, “I’d find it irresistible to grow to be the anthem of our victory.”
John Ismay contributed reporting.