AROUND SLOVAKIA

Východná bubbles with folklore

DESPITE chilly weather, thousands of people attended the open-air folklore festival in the amphitheatre in the eastern Slovak village of Východná during the first weekend in July. It was the 54th gathering in the village, which is nestled at the foot of the Tatras, the Pravda daily wrote.

DESPITE chilly weather, thousands of people attended the open-air folklore festival in the amphitheatre in the eastern Slovak village of Východná during the first weekend in July. It was the 54th gathering in the village, which is nestled at the foot of the Tatras, the Pravda daily wrote.

The amphitheatre is new and was recently completed at a cost of almost Sk100 million.

Numerous groups performed in the amphitheatre, including folklore groups Gymnik, Lipa, Partizán, SĽUK and many others. The auditorium with a capacity of about 6,000 people was filled for just about every performance.

This year’s festival focused on anniversaries for both groups and individual performers. Unfortunately, the popular group Lúčnica, which celebrates its 60th anniversary this year, did not perform.

“We were here last year, and we will come next year,” said Lúčnica choreographer Štefan Nosáľ, who is also president of the group that organises the festival. “We are presently preparing a performance for our 60th anniversary. The programme will premiere in November and we promise to perform it here at next year’s festival.”

Many folk workshops were also available to this year’s visitors. Traditional crafts were on display including the popular culinary specialties from Liptov. Under the new observation tower, children learned to make figures from corn husks, textile toys, and to weave on looms, while women in traditional costumes demonstrated a 200-year-old spinning-wheel.

But housing for participants turned out to be in somewhat short supply. It is recommended that visitors planning to attend next year’s festival book lodging well in advance.

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