The 18th of October, at a concert in the Odessa Philharmonic, Alexey Botvinov was given the annual award “William Tell-2020” from the Confederation of Switzerland. The honour was awarded personally delivered by the Ambassador of Switzerland to Ukraine H.E. Claude Wild.
I am extremely delighted to be personally here in Odessa tonight’s concert. This evening we are going to celebrate the extraordinary music of Bach. But before that, we will honour a very special person. The President of the Odessa Classics festival and a true Ukrainian virtuoso, who will give life to Bach’s music tonight: Maestro Alexey Botvinov.
Ladies and Gentlemen, each year the Embassy of Switzerland honours with the “William Tell Award” one Ukrainian personality. It is always a person who has made considerable contributions to Ukraine and who has actively helped to strengthen the relations between Ukraine and Switzerland. Maestro Botvinov is one of the most famous cultural Ambassadors of Ukraine. In his capacity he has also built many musical bridges to my country Switzerland. For example, invites Swiss artists to Ukraine and he plays himself often with the Zurich Chamber Orchestra. He also performs with the ballet productions of the Zurich Opera and not just in Switzerland, but all over the world. In July of this year he even played especially for our President during the first evening of her State visit to Ukraine.
I can say that, for my President, this was the best possible introduction to the Ukrainian soul, to the Ukrainian talent and to the Ukrainian generosity. Because Maestro Botvinov plays piano not only with his hands but also with his soul and with his heart. Maestro Botvinov, Switzerland wants to confer you tonight in recognition of your extraordinary personality, talent and achievements in music and as cultural Ambassador. It is my pleasure and true honour to hand you the “William Tell Award-2020”. Congratulations, thank you for what are you doing and for who you are!H.E. Claude Wild, Ambassador of Switzerland to Ukraine