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Koliada and Music from the Carpathians

Winter Songs and "troista" instrumental music
with Koliadnyky of Kryvorivnia
with special guests
Crimean Tatar violinist Nariman Asanova and percussionist Lennur Mamutov &
bandurist Julian Kytasty

December 6, 2014
Saturday at 4:00 & 7:00 PM

The Ukrainian Museum
222 E 6th Street New York City
tickets: $25/ $20 seniors, students & children
(212) 228-0110

On Saturday, December 6th at 4:00 and 7:00 PM Yara Arts Group will present "Koliada and Music from the Carpathians" at the Ukrainian Museum in New York. The Koliadnyky are a group of five men from the Carpathian Mountains in western Ukraine who sing traditional winter songs from the village of Kryvorivnia. The event will also feature the brilliant "troista" instrumental music from the Carpathians. We are excited that for the first time, Crimean Tatar musicians will be joining the Koliadnyky as special guests along with bandurist Julian Kytasty. The Koliadnyky were last in New York in 2012 and had two sold-out performance. (Current press photos and Koliadnyky performance at Ukrainian Museum in 2012)

The Koliada is a winter ritual that now coincides with Christmas, but long pre-dates it in some parts of Eastern Europe. High in the Carpathian Mountains, in the Hutsul villages where the oldest songs are preserved, Koliada is considered to be the most important event of the year. Groups of male singers visit each family and sing ancient songs that are believed to hold special powers. According to tradition spring and the harvest will not come unless the songs are sung in every household.
On Hutsul Koliada Ritual

Ivan Zelenchuk, is the lead singer or bereza. Now in his sixties, Ivan is the son of the man whose handwritten notebook of winter songs helped to preserve this tradition despite persecution under Soviet rule. Ivan considers the Koliada his personal mission. He met the members of Yara when they first visited the village in 2002 and has worked with them ever since. Mykola Zelenchuk, the son of Ivan, proudly carries on the tradition of his forefathers, both as a winter song singer and the best trembita (mountain long horn) player in the village. He also makes the traditional costumes for the winter song singers. He has taken part in Yara productions and was featured in "Still the River Flows," "Winter Sun" and "Midwinter Night" at La MaMa in New York City and at the Harbourfront Theatre in Toronto.

Mykola Ilyuk is a master fiddler and plays most traditional instruments. He is director of the renowned Hutsul Instrumental Ensemble and has his own museum of musical instruments from the area. He was the master fiddler for Yara's "Winter Sun" and "Midwinter Night," as well as all the Koliada events in 2010-2013. Vasyl Tymchuk plays the tsymbaly (hammer dulcimer) and teaches children to play Hutsul instruments. He has worked with Yara since 2010. Ostap Kostyuk plays the duda (bagpipes) and various flutes. He represents the newest generation that has become expert in this ancient tradition and was featured in Yara's shows in New York and Toronto.

Nariman Asanov, violinist, is a leading exponent of the musical tradition of the Crimean Tatars. He was born in Uzbekistan in 1973, the child of community activists who survived the Soviet mass deportation of Crimean Tatars to Central Asia in 1944. His family returned to Crimea in 1988, and he moved to the US in 1994 and graduated from the Music Conservatory at SUNY Purchase. He has performed at Lincoln Center, Symphony Space and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He will be joined by percussionist Lennur Mamutov.

Julian Kytasty is a third-generation bandurist. His music combines a mastery of traditional styles with a distinctly contemporary sensibility. He lives in New York, and his collaborators include artists as diverse as Chinese pipa virtuoso Wu Man, Mongolian master musician Battuvshin, performance poet Bob Holman, pioneering klezmer revivalist Michael Alpert and composer/saxophonist John Zorn. He has worked with Yara since 1998 performing in such productions as "Scythian Stones," "Raven," "Midwinter Night" and "Capt. John Smith Goes to Ukraine."

Instruments played by the Koliadnyky include: trembita (Carpathian mountain horn) made of hollowed pine tree that has been struck by lightning and wrapped in birch bark. Trembitas are used primarily in the mountain pastures. In the villages they are only used during the koliada and at funerals. Fiddle -- played in the Carpathian style. The musicians also play duda -- (bag pipe) made from a goat and tsymbaly -- (hammer dulcimer) and a variety of hand-made Carpathian flutes, including the tylynka. Yara has produced a CD Koliada: Winter Songs and Music from the Carpathians. For a sample with photos go to: Instumental from the Koliada CD

Yara Arts Group is a resident company at La MaMa Experimental Theatre in New York. A collective of artists of Asian, African, Latino, Eastern and Western European ancestry, Yara creates original work based on traditional material from often-overlooked Eastern cultures. Since 1990 they have made 30 original theatre pieces and hundreds of related events. Yara began its collaboration with the Koliadnyky in 2002. Photographs and video of the Koliada ritual have been exhibited at the RA Gallery in Kyiv, La MaMa's Galleria and the Ukrainian Institute in New York, Spring Street Gallery in Saratoga Springs, Bezpala-Brown Gallery in Toronto and as a major art installation at the Ukrainian Museum in New York.

Yara's Artistic Director, Virlana Tkacz, directs the show. She has created 25 original theatre pieces with Yara at La MaMa, which have performed in theatres and festivals in Ukraine, Central Asia, Siberia, China and Canada. Born in Newark, NJ she has received the NEA Poetry Translation Fellowship, nominations for a New York Innovative Theatre Award and was named Honored Artist of Ukraine in 2007. Projections will be by Kyiv artist Volodymyr Klyuzko, who was nominated for a NY Innovative Theatre Award for his work on Yara's "Raven."

Yara's participation in this event is made possible by Self-Reliance (NY) FCU, the Coca Cola Company, La MaMa Experimental Theatre and Yara Arts Group's numerous friends and donors.

Translation of a Koliada or winter song

Related Events in December 2014

Sunday Dec 7, 2014 at 1:30 PM
Koliada and Music from the Carpathians
with special guests Korinya, Max Lozynskyj and Julian Kytasty
UACCNJ, 60C N Jefferson Rd, Whippany, NJ

Thursday Dec 11, 2014 at 8PM
Koliada and Music from the Carpathians
with special guest Raphaelle Condo and Julian Kytasty
Bard College, Chapel, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY

Sunday Dec 13, 2014 at 7:30 PM
Koliada and Music from the Carpathians
with special guests Accolada Chamber Choir and Julian Kytasty
Ukrianian League, 800 N 23rd St, Philadelphia

Sunday, Dec 14, 2014 at 2:30 PM
Koliada and Music from the Carpathians
with special guests SPIV-Zhyttya and Julian Kytasty
Ukrainian National Catholic Shrine of the Holy Family
4250 Harewood Rd NE, Washington, DC

Tuesday, Dec 23, 2014
Volodymyr Klyuzko’s “Carpathian Photo Patterns”
as part of La MaMa Family Show Exhibit- Opening with Koliadnyky
Dec 23-Jan 4 Gallery Hours: Wednesday-Sunday 1:00-7:30 PM
La MaMa Galleria, 47 Great Jones St, NY

Saturday- Sunday, Dec 27-28, 2014
Winter Light
with Koliadnyky and Yara Arts Group
La MaMa Theatre, 66 East 4th St, New York

"In Search of the Hutsul Koliada of Kryvorivnia" by Virlana Tkacz


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