From humanitarian missions delivering medical tech gear to pediatric hospital to ramping up a fleet of ambulances for Ukrainian defense forces & civilians.

This Expedition Devoted to Documenting the Struggle and Graceful Grit of Ballet Dancers & Directors Fighting on the Front Lines To Preserve Their Cultural Heritage.

The Sky Was On Fire

Philadelphia area historian & documentary filmmaker Alfred (Fred) Hagen returns to Ukraine on a fifth mission next week for an extended period to complete filming and interviews for “The Sky Was On Fire — A Ballet At War.”

Within weeks after the unprovoked attack of Ukrainian sovereign soil by Russian Army of dictator Vladimir Putin, Philadelphia area entrepreneur and documentary filmmaker Fred Hagen completed a series of complicated and perilous trips to the battle zone, internationally sourcing, buying and delivering high tech medical equipment for Ukrainian pediatric hospitals.

Hagen’s friend and associate Mike Murray of Adrenaline Films accompanied him on trips to Ukraine and recorded scenes of devastation and interactions and extensive interviews with Ukraine Defense Forces and victims of the war. Hagen was particularly interested in connecting with key members of the professional ballet community so significant to the Ukrainian cultural identity.

Since the war began 6 principal Ukrainian dancers have been killed in action including one dancer that Hagen hoped to embed with on the front lines. Despite the tragic loss of young ballet dancers, Oleg Tokar, the 50 year-old Director of the Kyiv Ballet, has resigned his position and gone on active duty. Oleg will be accompanied by Alfred Hagen to the front lines.

Fred Hagen is an internationally recognized historian and documentarian best known for his recovery of numerous lost WW II aircraft and dozens of mortal remains of lost US and British military pilots and flyers in the jungles of the Pacific islands. The most famous of these recoveries was the legendary Swamp Ghost B-17 aircraft which was the subject of nationally televised PBS and HISTORY Channel presentations.

Hagen is also the President & CEO of a leading privately-owned US construction and development company with hundreds of employees.