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"I think: now he will kick out of the office". Iryna Fedyshyn – about conversations with Valerii Zaluzhnyi, unpleasant moments during the tour in the USA and dreams of her daughter

Iryna Fedyshyn and Valerii Zaluzhnyi

Singer Iryna Fedyshyn has raised funds for 60 cars for the frontline during a 26-concert tour of the United States and Canada. She announced this on her social media.

In an interview with OBOZ.UA, the singer told how a famous man managed to raise $300,000 in donations overseas. She also answered a question about her personal life for the first time: is she pregnant? Recently, Iryna Fedyshyn released a video for the song "Secret", where she appeared with a rounded belly, making her fans guess whether it was a creative idea or the artist was pregnant.

''I think: now he will kick out of the office''. Iryna Fedyshyn – about conversations with Valerii Zaluzhnyi, unpleasant moments during the tour in the USA and dreams of her daughter

– Iryna, during the American-Canadian tour you had concerts almost every day. Was it hard?

– You know, I was so ready for these performances that I didn't even have time to think about whether it was hard or not. We hardly slept and ate very little, but we had a goal and we persevered. However, to be honest, I still can't understand how we managed to do it. The schedule was crazy – fifteen flights. In the morning, you get on a plane – in the evening, a concert, then a meeting with supporters, you have to sign autographs, and take pictures. Then you have to deal with the volunteers about the money they donated. And in the morning – a different place, people, and everything in a new way. I don't know how we did it. I understand only one thing: we could not do it without God's help, some supernatural power helped us, because there were many difficult moments.

Even when we were just flying to New York from Krakow with a stopover, the first plane was delayed and the second one left without us. It was good that we took tickets with one day's notice. Vitalik (the artist's husband, producer Vitalii Chovnyk – Ed.) wanted to take them so that we could go straight to the concert, but I refused, and it's good that I did. The airline of the plane that was late put us up in a hotel, and the next day they put us on a plane. We arrived safely, but we were very shocked by the incident because we realized that we had planes to fly almost every day, logistics were made, tickets were bought, and a lot of money was spent. And if this chain breaks somewhere, it will cause problems for all the performances.

However, everything worked out. The only plane that was canceled was in Toronto, from where we were supposed to go to Calgary. We just got to the hotel at half past three in the morning, and at five in the morning, we were on our way to check-in because we were scheduled to fly out at seven. Vitalii even said: "Why did we have to stay in that hotel for an hour and a half?" I laughed: "So maybe we'll live in airports?" Although you can understand him: accommodation in the US is expensive, and we tried to optimize our expenses.

And so we managed to just put our heads to the pillow and were on our way again. As soon as we left the room, we got a call from our friends who had bought us tickets, because it's not easy to figure it out – different airlines, each with different requirements, and we had a bunch of suitcases. They said: "Your plane has been postponed to ten in the evening." And we have a concert at seven. But we were lucky to find tickets for noon. We went back to the hotel, slept a little more, and arrived on time.

– At your performances, you hold auctions with charity lotteries. Before your trip to the US, as you can see from your Facebook post, you visited Valerii Zaluzhnyi. What lots did the famous military leader sign?

– Valerii Fedorovych was very responsive to our request to meet. I did not even expect this, and I was incredibly impressed with him. Perhaps, it is not for nothing that our people love him so much – he is a man with a big heart. He agreed to our offer immediately: "Ira, I'll sign everything." But I was a little uncomfortable, because there were as many as 26 flags, according to the number of concerts. I thought: "He's going to throw me out of the office if I tell him about this number." And he said: "No problem, go ahead." And Vitalii also puts three paintings and several shell casings on the table. We brought them from the east from the guys. In Lviv, they were processed and decorated with patterns. I whisper: "Take them away, they're uncomfortable." And Zaluzhnyi said: "No problem."

– What did you manage to raise the most money for?

– At one of the concerts, we sold two flags signed by Valerii Fedorovych for 16 thousand dollars. Two buyers were competing for one lot, so I reassured them that there were two flags, so everyone got one.

''I think: now he will kick out of the office''. Iryna Fedyshyn – about conversations with Valerii Zaluzhnyi, unpleasant moments during the tour in the USA and dreams of her daughter

– In a previous interview with our publication, you told us that it was sometimes extremely difficult to collect donations during concerts. How was it now?

– You know, in America, compared to Europe, much more people donate. There were some concerts where lots just flew away, for example, in New York and Toronto. But there was also one performance (I won't name the city) where nothing went from the first lot. At such moments, it becomes so painful... I left the stage, I just wanted to cry. But I can't blame people, because everyone came with their situation. You don't know who is sitting in the audience, whether they have money or not. But you also think about our efforts: we came from so far away, so much work was put into the tour...

However, there was only one performance. And I'm not the only one who holds charity auctions, I have a husband. He has his lots, I have mine. He is a very good auctioneer, he jokes: "Do you think we are here to sing you songs?" Every time I listen to him, I am amazed at how he can do it – subtly, and professionally. That's why we also raised a good amount of money at that performance. We complement each other because selling lots is very difficult.

''I think: now he will kick out of the office''. Iryna Fedyshyn – about conversations with Valerii Zaluzhnyi, unpleasant moments during the tour in the USA and dreams of her daughter

– Did any of the artists, your colleagues, congratulate you on your success in bringing money for 60 cars for the Ukrainian Armed Forces?

– Almost no one. I thought to myself: why doesn't anyone call? We know many people, we say hello. However, we have no close friendship with anyone. On Instagram, she left a comment under Jamal's post – I saw it. It was very nice.

''I think: now he will kick out of the office''. Iryna Fedyshyn – about conversations with Valerii Zaluzhnyi, unpleasant moments during the tour in the USA and dreams of her daughter

– Your husband's relatives live in the United States. Did you manage to meet them?

– It even happened that we got to see them just in time for my mother-in-law's birthday. She is now visiting her son, Vitalii's brother. He has been living with his family in America for a long time, about 12 years. The last time we saw each other was a year after the start of the Great War. When we went to Canada to give concerts, we left our sons with relatives because they didn't have visas for that country. And our last performance was in the United States, so my brother gave us a ride with the children. And we all returned to Ukraine together.

''I think: now he will kick out of the office''. Iryna Fedyshyn – about conversations with Valerii Zaluzhnyi, unpleasant moments during the tour in the USA and dreams of her daughter

– Iryna, tell us, did we understand correctly from your last video that you are now pregnant?

– To be honest, I thought that everyone realized that it was just a clip. But it turns out not. Even my mom, who knows everything about me, watched the video and said: "I don't understand, what is this?". We didn't tell our parents what the video was about, we only discussed it with the director. We're thinking about having a third child, but I'm not pregnant at the moment. My husband and I dream of a girl. Even my music video is a kind of message that our dream will come true.

''I think: now he will kick out of the office''. Iryna Fedyshyn – about conversations with Valerii Zaluzhnyi, unpleasant moments during the tour in the USA and dreams of her daughter

– In your social networks, you announce new foreign concerts. Have you already received a call from Valeriy Zaluzhny?

- Yes, in mid-July we will have performances in Portugal and the Czech Republic. But there is practically no free time - now we are all in cars. My husband's phone is just bursting with calls. There are calls from the military who want cars, but the ones you saw on social media are all given away. We have to keep working.

Yesterday I wrote to Valerii Fedorovych, shared the results of the trip, and thanked him very much. He is to be credited for all of this because the flags with Zaluzhnyi's signature were flying. He wrote me back that we did a great job. He advised me to get some rest. I said: "We have tours scheduled again. Can you sign the lots?" And he didn't say no.

– Have you counted how many cars you have bought so far?

– We have already purchased 242 cars. There have been cases when a car did not serve the guys for several days because there was fierce shelling, the war destroys everything. But more often than not, the vehicles work at the front for a long time – the guys write to me and tell me stories. It is very inspiring. You realize that no matter how tired you are, no matter how difficult the tasks are, you are motivated to work and bring our victory closer.

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