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Festivals

This is a fairly comprehensive list of online festivals, most of which have English pages. Sites with festivals from all over Europe are listed in the lower non-Eastern European section at the bottom.

Budapest Festival City - Festival Center
"As of January 1, 1996 the Budapest Festival Center Kht. has been the official organizer of various cultural events of the Municipality of Budapest. Since 1996, the three major annual festivals of Budapest, the Spring Festival, the Budapest Fair and the Autumn Festival have been organized, as exclusive coordinator, by the Budapest Festival Center Kht. It is our responsibility to ensure that these events, while demonstrating their distinct qualities, shall have a common trait -- a high artistic standard. [We wish to] further the image of Budapest as a Festival city both within and beyond the borders of Hungary."

Guca / Dragacevo Trumpet Festival
August. Serbia's largest festival, a wild three to five-day village event of 50 or so brass bands wandering the streets, competitions, beer and roasting pigs. It is estimated that more than 300,000 people attend over the duration.

Guca film website
This is the homepage for a long overdue film on the Serbian festival.

Tanchaz (Hungary) [find a dance house year round on the Táncházak page]
March. Hungary's tanchaz movement gained popularity in the 1970s and now there are several around the country, particularly in Budapest -- and not just Hungarian music. Romanian, Serbian, Bulgarian, Greek and Turkish are also available. For this reason, it is just as good to visit in October for the regular events throughout the week, but the festival is a more formal, condensed version.

Surdulica (Serbia)
July. This smaller, less commercial festival of gyspy brass bands takes place along the Vlasina river in (surprise) Surdulica. This is a site for the entire town, but there are photos of the festival and program information as well.

Valley of the Arts in Kapolcs (Hungary) [in Hungarian]
July - August. Jazz, contemporary, rock and folk music as well as theater, art, dance and other events. English version.

Khamoro (Czech Republic)
May. This Roma festival hosts the best in gypsy musical talent the world over, while discussing Roma history and issues as well. It began in 1999.

Koprivshtica (Bulgaria)
August. This massive festival in the mountains convenes every five years and is known as one of the more authentic showcases of music, dance and artistic traditions. A smaller, regional festival is held every year, however. The link is information about the town itself, as the original festival link has disappeared. If you find one, please email me.

Strakonice (Czech) [In Czech. English language site here]
August. This bagpipe bi-annual festival in the town of Strakonice, in the southwest of the Czech Republic. "The town of Strakonice is situated in the heart of the Prachen Region - the country always famous for bagpipe playing. The 'Prachensky' ensemble with its bagpipe band took up the regional traditions in 1949. This ensemble had held the South Bohemia Festival of Songs and Dances since 1955 and organised the first meeting of Czech and Slovak bagpipers in 1956. Then on the occasion of the 600-year anniversary of foundation of Strakonice in 1967 the first International Bagpipe Festival took place."

Omis (Croatia) [In Croatian. English language site here]
June. Omis is a small town along the Dalmatian coast, where klapa ("company" or "group," pl. klape) join each year to sing. These urban groups of four to eight men sing sweet, romantic harmonies.

Veliko Tarnovo (Bulgaria) [Less tech-heavy site here]
July. This folklore festival is held in the old capital of Veliko Tarnovo.

Vychodna (Slovakia)
July. Begun in 1953. Local (and some foreign) folklore groups bring music and dancing, plus fine art and architecture, exhibitions of the folk costumes and garments and folk woodcarvings and ceramic arts to this mountainous area.

Liptovska Teplicka (Slovakia)
August. Folk singers and dancers convene in the hills. Schedule and nice images here, but not much information.

Ohrid Summer Festival and Balkan Festival (Macedonia)
Details of two festivals, in Ohrid, on the Macedonian coast -- the Balkan Festival (July) and the Summer Festival (July - August), which includes theater.

Dubrovnik (Croatia)
July. A summer festival in this notedly beautiful waterfront town along the Dalmatian Coast.

International Folklore Festival in Zagreb (Croatia)
July. "In 1966, the International Folklore Festival was established and Zagreb has ever since been a vivacious meeting point for members of different nations and cultures, a stage for their music, dance, and other heritage."

Viljandi (Estonia)
July. This three-day festival has folk music, dance, handicrafts and participatory workshops for visitors.

Druga Godba (Slovenia)
May - June. Ljubljana hosts this near two-week event with folk and ethnic music from around the world.

Okarina Etno Festival (Slovenia)
August. Another internationally oriented festival, often in Bled -- a small town based on a picturesque lake and castle. Past performers include groups from from Madagascar, India, France, Brazil and Nepal.

 

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Non-Eastern European Festivals

Folk Dance Seminars
This site includes festivals, singing seminars, and other events from around the world.

FROG's European Folk Festival Links
Folk and Roots Online Guide's country-by-country list of festivals and reviews. Nearly all Western Euroepan.

Europeade (European)
July (or August). An international folk festival signifying friendship among nations and involving many European countires.

Kaustinen (Finland)
July. A week-long festival of various types of Finnish music.

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All materials © Kristin Fiore 1995-2009. Use without permission is strictly encouraged.