Vjekoslav Šutej: “I will perform anywhere to help the Ana Rukavina Foundation”

While preparing for his impending great humanitarian concert that will raise money for his leukemia treatment, maestro Šutej gave an interview to a journalist from Večernji List:

You have always gladly accepted invitations to take part in humanitarian concerts. Even now, when your own life is at stake, you agreed on the condition that part of the proceeds must go to the Ana Rukavina Foundation. Why?

Because very little money has been raised so far for this foundation. There are 17 million blood samples in the world, and we have no more than 10 thousand. People need to live; everybody has the right to life. I have insisted and I will fight until the day I die for money to be raised for the Ana Rukavina Foundation. There simply has to be money for them, and I will do my bit by performing wherever necessary.

Besides participating in charity concerts, you have always helped little, ordinary people wherever you could. Would you say that this is a fine example of the proverbial good that shall be repaid? 

I am not the only one who has helped. There are many people who give up things they have in order to help others. In my profession, this goes without saying. I do not know a single artist who will refuse an invitation to take part in a humanitarian concert. Sanader has called me. Biškupiċ has sent me e-mails.

We know that your colleagues often call you, the Philharmonic asks for your advice every now and then… Do you still find time to rest?

I have been told that I have too much contact with people; I have been told that a mere sneeze may be perilous, but I will not give up. Every contact fills me with immense joy because the only thing I really need at this moment is for other people not to leave me alone. I need my family, friends, colleagues; they give me the strength to go on. Prime Minister Sanader has called me and asked me how I am. The Minister of Culture has been sending me e-mails. This really means a lot. The Philharmonic cellist Kuzmin was in Vancouver in August and came to visit me, although Seattle is quite a long way away. I was very happy to see her. It is true that I get a lot of e-mails and calls, but this is what keeps me going, this and my family.
SOURCE: Večernji List, 16.11.2008. – Journalist: Tanja Pacek

With all our heart, we wish the world renowned artistic director and head-director of the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra, maestro Vjekoslav Šutej, a successful bone marrow transplant and a very speedy recovery.

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