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December 25   -   Norman Lebrecht - Slipped disc

Disaster: Russian army ensemble vanishes in Black Sea air crash

The Russian Defense Ministry has announced the disappearance of Tu-154 aircraft with 91 people on board. The aircraft vanished over the Black Sea. A search effort has begun. The state news agency Tass reports that the passengers included the Russian army choir, the celebrated Alexandrov Ensemble, as well as orchestral musicians and nine Russian medi representatives. The musicians were heading to Syria to perform for Russian air crew at the Hmeymim airbase. The Alexandrov Ensemble, founded in 1939, was formerly known as the Red Army Choir. UPDATE: It is reported that 64 of the missing a members of the ensemble. Our thoughts are with the families. The Ensemble featured on the Eurovision Song Contest in 2009.

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