Maria Nemtsova
Music for Peace Project

There are two definitions of the word “peace” in the Oxford dictionary:

  1. “Freedom from disturbance; tranquility; mental and emotional calm”.
  2. “A state or period in which there is no war or a war has ended; the state of being free from civil disorder”.

The “Music for Peace” project (MfP) is a charitable musical project which pulls inspiration from both of the above definitions. The Music for Peace Project was founded by two young Russian musicians, Maria Nemtsova (piano) and Vitaly Vatulya (saxophone). MfP‘s Mission is to benefit young musicians who live in today’s conflict zones. The “Music for Peace” Project uses the convening power of music as a vehicle to maximize the benefits of international and cross-cultural contacts between youth and young adult populations. Through music, MfP aims to bring individuals from all backgrounds and social status together into a relaxed and natural environment.

The concerts and master classes are offered to present new challenges for the artists to perform in a variety of settings, traveling to remote areas, giving master classes to talented young artists which are growing in areas of recent conflict and performing in countries with a history of cross-cultural and religious differences. Our main goal is to share knowledge, experience and joy with audiences.


– Offer concerts and master classes in conflict zones and devastated areas suffering from natural disasters or terrorism around the world

– Popularize classical music in the above-mentioned regions, where locals have less opportunities to attend concerts and study classical music

– Support young musicians and find talent in devastated territories to bring them to the best concert halls of Russia

Dr. Elena Kostyuchenko
Peter the Great Music Academy

Born in St. Petersburg, Dr. Elena Kostyuchenko is the General Manager of Peter the Great Music Academy. She is also the General Manager of Symfonia St. Petersburg Orchestra, General Manager of the British Music Festival, and has produced many festivals in Russia, such as the American Music Festival, the Swedish Music Festival, etc.

She has organized tours for various Saint Petersburg based orchestras in Europe (Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Sweden, Finland), USA, Costa-Rica and other countries.

From 1997 Kostyuchenko was the organizer of the Annual International workshop for conductors under Peter the Great Music Academy, featuring some of the best St. Petersburg orchestras, and featuring participants from all over the world. She has introduced many great artists to Saint Petersburg audiences at the Grand Hall of the D. Shostakovich Philharmonic: Gary Carr, double bass (1995); Barbara Hendricks, soprano (1996); pianist Rosalyn Tureck (1996); William Warfield, bass baritone (1998); John Bruce Yeh, principal clarinetist of the Chicago Symphony (1998), and others.

Elena has represented many successful artists from Europe, the United States and Russia, engaging them with many Russian orchestras in Saint-Petersburg, Moscow, Yaroslavl, Pskov, Novgorod, Kaliningrad, Sochi, Petrozavodsk, Mineralnye Vody, Maikop, Krasnodar, etc., as well as neighboring countries. These include recording activities, and presentation of new music to Russian audiences. She has collaborated with various European festivals in Finland, Switzerland, Latvia, Germany and France.

She holds a Certificate in Artist Management (following the internship in San Francisco, USA) and a Diploma from the Russian American Center of Citizens Initiative. She is also a candidate for PhD at Saint Petersburg State University.

Tatyana Polyak

Tatyana Polyak started Arts-NY site to share her passion for the arts. She is a strong believer in enriching the life by exploring various forms of art. The art doesn’t exist without the audience. Consuming the art makes you part of the art itself. This is known as the beholder’s share theory that is masterly covered in the 2012 book by Eric Kandel, The Age of Insight: The Quest to Understand the Unconscious in Art, Mind, and Brain. Tatyana’s work is inspired by this deep insight.

Tatyana graduated from NYU Stern Business schools and studied Art Management and Content Strategy. She closely follows NYC cultural scene with particular interest in orchestral performances, piano recital, classical guitar performance and artists from Pieter Bruegel the elder to impressionists to avant-garde to post-modernists. She takes very keen interest in the oeuvre of Vienna late 19th century artistic movement which intertwined music, art, theater, medicine and psycho-analysis and gave the world such giants as Klimt, Schiele, Kokoschka, Mahler and Freud.

Tatyana’s site,, offers a carefully selected sample of NYC cultural scene to please visitors’ aesthetic curiosities!

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