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Celebration of Easter, Riga,
22 March 2003

The Open-air museum - it is time to begin to shake

      On Saturday, March 22 in Riga all the day the Latvian paganic Easter was celebrated. The day began by meeting of Sun on the Hares' island. There came about 30-40 "greens" and folklorists. Already after the third song, a red sun has looked out above roofs of Maskachka.

In the Open-air museum a mixed Latvian-Estonian bag-pipes players' band played

      At midday began celebration of Easter or, in other words, of Large day (or spring solstice) in the Ethnographical Open-air museum. As everyone year, celebrators drived birds, shooked, mocked in songs, threwed eggs through the pole of the swing, fried eggs, played roundelays and danced.

The evening concert - sings Margarita Šakina with Grodi

      All wishing to continue by a large bus have taken to the downtown, where in four PM on Bastion hill began the following activity. The fest begun to sound at the top of the hill, then rolled down to the scene near the foot of it, where performed a lot of ensembles: Dandari, Maskačkas spēlmaņi, Pērlis, Rija, Skandinieki and others.

The evening concert - sings Barta ethnographical ensemble

      The evening concert devoted to the summer's festival Baltica began at 19.00 in the House of Riga Latvian Society. If the previous activities were carelessly cheerful, this one was more serious and quiet. Memories of the first Baltica was showed by videostaff, songs and speeches, an artist has shown a poster of the new Baltica, sang various groups: Senleja (dashingly), Skandinieki (seriously), Margarita Šakina (unfortunately, it is already difficult to her to sing), Grodi (unprecedented case - with children's studio), Barta ethnographical ensemble (has surprised by consecutive singing of voices in false intervals), Klāni (very pleasant performance, but for such large audience of non-Latgalians - too silent), Laiksne (with force), Taureņi (good, but all the same we already saw at the ceremony of presentation with The Big annual folklore prize) and Pērkonītis (singing between the balcony and the stage has especially excited listeners). The concert had a smack of the childrens' folklore festival Pulkā eimu, pulkā teku, as it was organized by the same people.

      Article: Ansis Ataols Bērziņš, 3 April 2003
      Photos: Ansis Ataols Bērziņš

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