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Review for the festival Baltica'03, Viluoni,
4 January 2003

      A white cold of the Latvian winter, the broken by it boiler of Vilani system of heating and hospitality of Vilanians were a context of this activity. However, the concert induced on an idea of spring, summer and festival Baltica 2003. Certainly, it is uneasy to show summer programs and to sing songs about hay in winter-time, but nothing to do - the festival will take place in the summer, and its subject this year is hay, milk and related things.
      In the review participated 11 folklore and ethnographical ensembles of Rezekne district, which would like to participate in the festival. By the words, the Rezekne district will have a special role in the festival - in the city of Rezekne will be holded the final concert of the festival.

      Children and youth folklore group Biteites from Vilani have shown shepherd's roundels and songs. Children acted unchained, in ensemble there are a lot of participants capable to sing good.


      Rezekne folklore ensemble Rūta have prepared a program of a hay joint-work with songs, riddles and jokes. Some songs were accompanied by harmonica and washing board, maybe because the leader wants to give to the performance more interesting sounding, though it does not correspond to local traditions.


      Feimani folklore group Olūteņš acquainted the spectators with various joint-works in a Latgalian court yard - hay, potato, trip behind fire wood and "porks funeral". The interest of the ensemble in the folklore heritage of the area is evident, however in the performance sometimes is felt an uncertainty.

      Rogovka ethnographical ensemble has pleased the spectators with an authentic manner of singing. Performance was devoted to a shepherd's life.

      In the folklore ensemble Atauga sing retaired teachers of the district. Sounding is close to traditions of vocal ensembles, instead of folk singing. Though the listeners was not too interested in the performance, the main thing is that the particpinats itselfs like what they are doing.

      Rikova ethnographical ensemble already for many years performs in the form of a dramatized play. This time ensemble showed performance about a break on haymaking. The performance has a good rate, brisk dialogues. Singing is regular, however showings of the contents of songs makes them artificials.

      Folklore group Viļuonīši have prepared a program of haymaking with characteristic conversations, songs and dances. In the performance some ethnographical things - wooden rakers and pitchforks - was showed, that acquaints spectators with their use. The ensemble dances well, it is felt, that the participants like to deepen their skills of the folk singing.


      Sakstagols folklore ensemble Kolnasāta has pleased all listeners with three perfect songs about haymaking, natural manner of performing, good sensation of the hall. They has created impression, that all of us are on a meadow.

      Bierzhgols ethnographical ensemble sang about joint-works, using both old joint-working songs and absolutely new shlagers. The manner of singing reminded a vocal ensemble, and the performance was illustrative and unnatural.

      Muokunkolns folklore ensemble sang about human life - from a cradle up to a tomb. The ensemble has a small experience of a dialogue with spectators, therefore at times they concentrated on themselves, instead of on a bringing songs home to listeners.

      Dancing collective of Makashani handicraft school Kūkleite has shown treatments of local dances. It is that case, when people underestimate their wealth - they have well preserved traditions - and are afraid to take it out on a stage in pure, not spoiled kind.

      Uzulmuizha folklore ensemble is only some months old, therefore it is possible just to wish them to not lose desire to master traditions of area.

      Article: Māra Mellēna, 11 February 2003
      Photos: Māra Mellēna

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