Východná turns 50

THE LARGEST festival of folk traditions in Slovakia, Východná, will celebrate its 50th anniversary from July 2 to 4.
"It's thanks to the people behind its organisation that the festival has lived to such a ripe age," said Jozef Burič, director of the National Culture Institute at the National Educational Centre (NOC).
Growing from a local form to reach a national and then international level, the festival will present 1,500 folk singers, musicians, and dancers during its 50th jubilee.


MOST visitors are not so stiff.
photo: Courtesy of NOC

THE LARGEST festival of folk traditions in Slovakia, Východná, will celebrate its 50th anniversary from July 2 to 4.

"It's thanks to the people behind its organisation that the festival has lived to such a ripe age," said Jozef Burič, director of the National Culture Institute at the National Educational Centre (NOC).

Growing from a local form to reach a national and then international level, the festival will present 1,500 folk singers, musicians, and dancers during its 50th jubilee. Apart from local folk ensembles, including the professional Lúčnica and Slovak Folk-Artistic Collective (SĽUK), the little village of Východná near Liptovský Hrádok will also welcome guests from Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic.

"All blocks, programmes within the festival are basically dedicated to the anniversary. The two main programmes specifically dedicated to the 50th celebration of Východná, however, are Čriepky [Little Shards,] and Sviatok tanca [The Feast of Dance]," said Burič.

Both of the programmes will take place on Saturday, July 3 in the local amphitheatre.


THE FESTIVAL and its performers continue to mature each year.
photo: Courtesy of NOC

The former, starting at 18:00, is a programme reflecting on the festival's history and various performances that over the years have helped to shape it into its current form. The latter will begin at 21:00, and will offer a dynamic parade of dance shows.

The amphitheatre's programme will unofficially start at 19:00 on Thursday, July 1 with the musical Na skle maľované (Painted on a Glass). The highly successful performance, which has enjoyed over 500 reprises at the Pavol Országh Hviezdoslav Theatre in Bratislava, will feature the popular Michal Dočolomanský in the main role of Jánošík.

On Friday at 14:00, the Bratislava folk ensemble Lipa will come to the town's square of Liptovský Mikuláš in order to lure visitors to Východná, where the programme starts at 18:00 on the prehliadkové pódium stage. Two hours later the show will move to the amphitheatre, which will stage performances until well past midnight.

Saturday will deliver a dozen programmes from 10:00 until midnight. The last day, Sunday, will culminate in the Beauty Heritage gala-programme at 16:00.


photo: Courtesy of NOC

Visitors can also purchase a CD mapping the 50-year musical retrospective of the festival and learn about other accompanying activities, such as a dance school, a woodcarvers' symposium, traditional crafts demonstrations, and an exhibition of traditional female clothing featuring a specific technique of printing.

Tickets for the whole festival cost Sk600, students pay Sk300. Tickets for individual performances or blocks of performances can be bought on site.

For more information visit www.nocka.sk/utk/ff_vychodna.

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