A Kings Langley singer has travelled to her grandmother’s long lost Russian home.
Daria Kulesh described the trip to Ingushetia as: “by far the most exciting and eye-opening journey, not only in my music career, but my entire life”.
In November, Daria Kulesh performed her song The Moon and the Pilot, based on her Ingush grandmother’s stories, live on the BBC World Service.
Described by Mike Harding as “one of the most beautiful new songs of the last 10 years”, it led hundreds of people to contact Daria to thank her for the song and for speaking out about the events of February 1944, when the Ingush and the Chechens were brutally deported from their homes on the orders of dictator Joseph Stalin.
Despite the deportees being allowed to return in 1957, the pain still lingers.
The song has made Daria known in Ingushetia and she was invited to visit her grandmother’s lost homeland.
During her visit, she appeared on Ingush national TV and radio and performed two concerts. She also visited the breathtaking mountains and their unique tower-studded fortified villages, including her grandmother’s ancestral village of Fourtoug.
She met Ingushetia’s Minister of Culture as well as local musicians, dancers, poets, historians, actors, artists, and was reunited with relatives.
Daria hopes to reflect her memories and experiences in her forthcoming album, Long Lost Home, due out in February.