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South Dakota composer presents soul music and stories from Ukraine

Calvin and Inga Jones
Carl Norquist
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Calvin and Inga Jones

This interview posted above is from SDPB's daily public-affairs show, In the Moment, hosted by Lori Walsh.

International composer Calvin Jones performs on September 22 at the Goss Opera House in Watertown as part of an effort to assist Ukrainian refugees and other immigrants relocating to South Dakota.

Jones was in Kyiv on February 24, when Russian rockets fired onto the city. The South Dakota-born composer spent years performing around the world and had made Ukraine his home. With the war on their doorstep, Jones and his wife were forced to flee.

"We had less than an hour to pack everything that we thought was important and see if we can stuff it in our little Fiat," said Jones. "The question is then where do we go? You've got to cross the Dnipro to get to western Ukraine. Somehow you have to get across that with 6million other people in Kyiv."

Jones said it took four days to get out of the country. The experience motivated him to help other refugees.

"This concert is exactly what I realized I could be fully 100% behind," said Jones. "I had helped a couple of Ukrainians come to get sponsored and get employment in the last few months, so I know what that entails and all the work and what is required to get this done."

Tickets for Calvin Jones: Soul Music & Stories from the Ukraine can be purchased online. Additional concerts are being planned for early November in Rapid City and Sioux Falls.

Lori Walsh is the host and senior producer of In the Moment.
Carl Norquist is a producer and writer for In the Moment. An EMMY-winning producer, Carl previously worked for KTIV News 4 in Sioux City, IA. Carl is a Minnesota native and graduate of Augustana University with majors in Art and English.