"WIELKOPOLANIE" IN ESTONIA
The destination of departure was the International Folklore Festival Võru 2011 in Estonia. In total our group traveled over 3000 km and we presented ourself 12 times! Our first proper stop was Vilnius - capital of Lithuania and one of the most glamorous cities in Europe. The entire group has paid tribute to the mother of Marshal Pilsudski and to all fallen, Polish heroes, that are resting on Rossa Cementary. After a short stay in Lithuania, “Wielkopolanie” immediately journeyed on to Võru, a charming village on the south-east Estonia, to waiting for them organizers of the festival. There for 4 days Group participated in the Seventeenth Folkloorifestival Võru. In the festival participated 10 foreign groups from eight different countries in the world and the multitude of Estonian formations and bands. Many thousands of public were delighted with the colourfulness of Polish costumes, especially presented at the opening parade outfits of Cracow, and very enthusiastically responded to every single one of the Polish performance. According to the unique role as the representatives of the Polish Nation "Wielkopolanie" have to present an unique repertoire as well. In addition to the artistic program of dances from Greater Poland there were also dances form Beskid, Lowicz, Silesia, Rzeszow and Cracov. Remarkable impression on the public had “krakowiak” as well as other national dances – “polonez” (the polonaise) and “kujawiak with oberek”. During the festival also took place a concert in which musicians from selected by the organizers bands were involved. “wielkopolanie” were represented by Sebastian Dankiewicz, who show his extraordinary musical skills in playing violin. His performance has had a huge impression on the audience and the applause was unceasing. During the evening, common events our band was not only frequent but also expected by everone guest on the festival stage. Also, finishing the festival, bands of all participaiting countries played together previously prepared Estonian song, which was certainly a huge surprise for the audience. But the Festival meant not only artistic performances but also spreading of cultures. During an open to everybody teaching session of dances and plays, the ones from Greater Poland such as “Dupnik” or “Chusteczkowy” have domineted, but also more dignified dances like “polonez” (the polonaise) and “trojak” havewon the heartsof participants. Evening farewell song for the setting sun, sung on a bank of a lovely lake, was a beautiful and touching accent of participation in the festival. "Bandoska" and "Momenta" performed in such a setting would steal hearts of even the most unrepentant listener! So much for the spirit ... And for the body? "Wielkopolanie" were promoting Polish cuisine by treating with “bigos”, bread with lard and pickled cucumbers to all visitors on the last day of the festival. The speed in which Polish delicacies disappeared is best proof for popularity of traditional Polish food!
After a solemn and warm farewell in Võru "Wielkopolanie" have also visited the proud capital of Estonia - Tallinn. After far too short stay, but unfortunately “Wielkopolanie” had already have to return to the country, the Group journeyed back, but with a necessary stop in Riga, the capital of Latvia. We were strongly encouraged to the visit by Latvian group met in the festival.
Undoubtedly, this was another successful trip the Group has made and we hope that this was only the first of many visits to the hospitable Estonia. Dear friends, goodbye!Kallid sõbrad, nägemiseni!