UC Berkeley Student Organizes Benefit Concert for Ukraine

San Francisco’s Herbst Theatre is offering the grad students a space on Mar. 13.

NBC Universal, Inc.

A UC Berkeley grad student is closely watching the situation in Ukraine because the devastation is a personal one for him. His grandmother is from Ukraine.

Lucas Spangher, who is a Juilliard graduate, is working on his Ph.D. in computer science at UC Berkeley.

Spangher is now making his musical talent to work on a more personal project, a concert to raise money for the people in Ukraine.

“My grandmother is from Kyiv,” he said. “One of the first thoughts I had when I first started watch this complex is that Kyiv is gone.”

Spangher told NBC Bay Area Thursday that he’s leaning on his friends to put together a special performance to raise money for Ukrainians, who are taking up arms and fighting for their country.

“There are people with lives similar to mine being disrupted that made me feel like this was a tragedy we are watching unfold,” he said. “I originally planned on having this in a friend’s living room but it started to snowball.”

People like Adam Bouyamourn didn’t hesitate to be a part of the concert in the making.

“We were kind of sitting around feeling sad, feeling hopeless and I printed out the Ukrainian national anthem,” he said. "It helped me process my emotions a little bit."

San Francisco’s Herbst Theatre is offering the struggling grad students a space on Mar. 13.

It will cost them $3,000. They are hoping to get that money donated, so they can use all the profits to send to Ukraine.

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