• 24.6. - 2.7. 2016

      ŠE -545 DNI...

FOLKART – all colours of the world for all good people


06. 05. 2016

Lent Festival is a festival consisting of festivals, but Folkart has always been holding a very special place and role.

Folklore group from Benin, Folkart 2015

Folkart is the origin, the predecessor of Lent Festival, and remains its first and most important pillar. Its mission is unique, because it has been proving over the years, that diversity can only enrich us, and that a peaceful coexistence is possible. It preserves common lore, memories, and world folk traditions, and with that enriches the identity of the guests as well as Maribor as the host. 

The festival is one of the five big European festivals of this kind, and is the only Slovenian member of the NGO CIOFF®. In 2013 the honorary sponsorship of the Folkart Festival was taken over by Irina Bokova, the general director of UNESCO in light of the 10th anniversary of the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. Through the years, the international folklore festival Folkart has grown not only into the biggest Slovenian folklore festival, but also into one of the most visible and respected festivals on the folklore scene.   

Folklore group from Singapore, Folkart 2015

What is Alenka Klemenčič, the producer of Folkart, working on for this year’s edition?

“Each year our goal is to bring to Maribor as many different groups from at least three continents that will deliver folk traditions never seen before. But who to bring this year in order to experience something new? How to preserve the authenticity while respecting the deep-rooted spirituality of Australian Aborigines and American native inhabitants? How to avoid synthetic substitutes? We have to delight and convince a demanding, but loyal audience coming from all parts of Slovenia and abroad.

Alenka Klemenčič, producer of Folkart

Therefore this year’s spectrum of performing groups will be very broad – from South America to Europe and all the way to Asia. The cold of distant Finland will be heated up by Argentina. Ex-Yugoslavia will be represented by an excellent Serbian group, the Asian part of the world will be impersonated by mystical Kazakhstan. The beauty of the Pacific world will be brought to us by a group from Fiji, competing against the hot rhythms of Costa Rica.”

What can we expect in the years to come?

“My thoughts are already some sort of organised chaos, I have a bunch of raw and bold ideas. There is so much that hasn’t been discovered yet! For example China and Yakuts! A hard nut to crack, but not impossible to do so. I have been secretly working on some things for next year, but they still need to be sorted out. A counterweight would be the Maori, and something soft, calm: maybe the magical songs and dances from Polynesia? Maybe the lithe dancers from Cook Islands? The mysterious beauty of the Orient, and maybe a bit of mystical Africa? Let’s see what happens!”   

Folklore group from Benin, Folkart 2015

This year Folkart Festival will be taking place on the Big stage on the Leon Štukelj square; the big opening will be on Tuesday, June 28th, at 9:30 pm, the presentation of individual groups on Wednesday and Thursday, and on Saturday, July 2nd there will be the grand closing with the traditional fireworks. 

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