English

LATVIA

 

Otaņķi folklore group

Artistic director Solveiga Pētersone

Otaņķi folklore group was founded in 1964. It is a custodian and a promoter of the traditions of Nīca municipality Otaņķi parish: the members actively perform, participate in festivals and master classes, embody and pass on the local traditions by singing and storytelling. The ensemble consists of 18 participants between the ages of 7 and 87, they all are like a family. In fact, many singers are relatives to one another: mothers, daughters, spouses, aunts, nephews, daughters-in-law, etc.

The members of ensemble wear Nīca folk costumes with honour – many singers have inherited parts of the folk dress from generations before – mother’s vest, grandmother’s skirt, aunt’s woollen shawl, all from around the end of 19th century.

Otaņķi ethnographic ensemble is the winner of National Grand Prize of Folklore, which in Latvia is the highest evaluation in the field of folklore.

In the festival, the ensemble will perform special traditional songs, also called “long calls”, funny popular songs ziņģes, Nīca towel dance, other dances and games, and will accompany them with accordion, violin, drums and kokle, Latvian zithers.