EFN March's newsletter, #1: the first step of this new path
EFN Newsletter March 2022 #1
WELCOME AND SUMMARY
We begin this EFN initiative at a time of absolute shock, outrage and grief at the violence we are witnessing with the invasion of Ukraine. A few days ago we made a statement on this issue, which we repeat in this newsletter. We cannot let the horror of the situation curtail our mission.
· We welcome in this newsletter news from several of our members: 10th edition of the Eurofonik festival, open call of the Italian magazine Lineatrad, open call of WOMEX, new CD with Izvika singing, from southwestern Serbia and the announcement of the 1st North Atlantic Song Convention. · Our first featured member is Mr. Geoff Cripps. · Our first featured artist is Ms. Norma Waterson, who died on 30 January. · And we share three special contents: a recap of VONK Festival and Showcase, a panoramic view on the Calabrian Tarantella and our statement about the invasion of Ukraine.
At the end of the newsletter you will find indications on how you can contribute to future editions, whether you are an EFN member or not. By the way, we are always looking for new members. Thanks for your attention, have a fruitful reading.
News from EFN Members
EUROFONIK CELEBRATES ITS 10TH EDITION
By Aurélie Caudron
Eurofonik, the European folk music festival, will celebrate its 10th edition from March 10 to 20. Each year, the festival begins with a professional seminar organized with the Fédération des acteurs et Actrices des Musiques et Danses Traditionnelles (FAMDT), a French federation which promotes folk music and dance.
This year, this professional seminar will focus on the French presidential elections and will welcome some representatives of the candidates for an interview highlighting their aims for culture and specifically for folk music and dance.
More information on our website (in French).
Feel free to ask us more information: email@example.com
LINEATRAD, ITALIAN MAGAZINE, HAS AN OPEN CALL FOR MEDIA PARTNERSHIP
By Eric E. van Monckhoven, from Music4You
Do you have an artist, album or event you would like to present to the Italian world/folk music community? Lineatrad is a free bi-monthly online magazine with thousands of readers.
For any further details, feel free to contact: Loris Bohm, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Download Lineatrad for free, here.
NOW OPEN: WOMEX CALL FOR PROPOSALS FOR 2022 PROGRAMME
By Gaurav Narula, in charge of press, media and communications for WOMEX
WOMEX has opened the annual Call for Proposals for the 28th edition of the event that will take place in Lisbon, Portugal, from 19 – 23 October 2022. Call for Proposals addresses all musicians, film-makers and music professionals from across the globe.
Help shape the official WOMEX programme with creative ideas, projects, and visions you care about. Proposals can be made in four categories - Showcase | Club Summit | Conference | Film and can be submitted from the dedicated submission website.
Deadline to Apply: Friday, 18 March 2022.
NEW CD WITH ARCHAIC SINGING FROM SERBIA
By Marija Vitas, Editor-in-chief of Magazine Etnoumlje and World Music Association of Serbia portal, Vice president of WMAS
The World Music Association of Serbia released the CD Izvika Singing in the Beauty of Female Voices, on December 24, 2021. Izvika is an ancient singing in pairs from southwestern Serbia. It is a vital but also endangered heritage, as it is nurtured mainly by older people. Based on a field recording, done in Nova Varoš last July, the CD includes 35 tracks – both songs sung by female and mixed couples – authentic folk singers – and some non-musical tracks that can bring us a bit closer to this area and its tradition. The rich, informative booklet is in English and Serbian.
FIRST NORTH ATLANTIC SONG CONVENTION
By the organizers
The first North Atlantic Song Convention will be held in Svendborg, Denmark on 8-10 April 2022. Svendborg is located 195 km southwest of Copenhagen on the island of Funen.
The event will see singers and supporters from far and wide congregating to discuss, learn and share our song traditions. There will be talks, workshops, panels, song circles, concerts and more.
As this is the first NAS Convention you will be able to directly get involved in the development and thinking behind the new international body NASC as well as meet like-minded people who are interested in supporting traditional/folk singing.
Learn more on the website.
Featured Member: Geoff Cripps
Geoff Cripps’s former occupation, from which he retired, was Artistic Director of RCT Theatres. At the end of 2018, after 22 years, he retired from his music making with Allan Yn Y Fan after 6 albums, many UK festival appearances and UK Tours.
He was Trac's first Development Director from 2001 to 2003.
Back in the 1980s, he produced and presented Folk on Monday for BBC Radio Wales.
Geoff was the chair for Creu Cymru – the theatres and arts centres development agency for Wales -between 2017 and 2020.
He has some useful experiences to share re: programming/theatres & arts centres/touring Welsh music to international audiences.
Check the website of Allan Yn Y Fan.
Featured Artist: Norma Waterson By Katy Spicer
One of the greatest and most admired singers of the British folk revival, Norma Waterson, died on 30 January 2022, aged 82. A performer for nearly 70 years, her name is synonymous with traditional folk song, forming The Watersons with sister Lal, brother Mike, and cousin John Harrison, in the 1960s and Waterson:Carthy with husband Martin and daughter Eliza in the 1990s. Film Director, Derrick Knight filmed The Watersons on tour “Travelling for a Living” which was broadcast on BBC2 in 1966.
“Travelling for a Living” film:
Although known for her fine performance of traditional song, Norma had eclectic musical tastes and demonstrated this in her solo albums particularly “Norma Waterson”, nominated for a Mercury Music prize in 1996. In 2002 she released her first solo album of traditional songs “Bright Shiny Morning”, the same year in which she was awarded an MBE.
Norma Waterson - Bright Shiny Morning
Norma’s passion and energy saw her performing and recording right up to 2010 when she and Eliza performed at the Union Chapel, London, and released a live concert recording as The Gift Band. This album, to which Norma brought her wide musical repertoire, won Best Album and Best Traditional Track (Poor Wayfaring Stranger) at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards in 2011. Five years later she was again honoured at the 2016 Folk Awards, being awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award.
Picture: cover of 1996 album Norma Waterson (fair use).
VONK FESTIVAL AND SHOWCASE, GHENT, BELGIUM By Nod Knowles
Although this new newsletter is generally for news of future events and activities, it’s a pleasure to recall the VONK festival that took place last month (18-20 February) in the historic city of Ghent.
First organised in 2019 – and then, like so many other activities, stopped by the pandemic in 2020 and 2021 – VONK is the new Belgian showcase for traditional music. Inspired by long-standing showcases such as EFEx, Folkelarm and Showcase Scotland, VONK is produced and promoted by EFN member Muziekmozaiek in the friendly, relaxed Lakenmetershuis venue on Ghent’s central Vrijdagmarkt square.
The 2022 programme provided an excellent mix of up-and-coming Belgian artists on the all-day Saturday programme, complemented by a host of amateur and community workshop groups on Sunday – both demonstrating the strength and depth of Muzikmozaiek’s work and the Flemish scene to enthusiastic local audiences and a very happy and sociable group of invited professionals from several European countries.
Full details of VONK 2022 can be found here. And if you like your showcases intimate,with great hospitality and high artistic quality, VONK 2023 has got to be one to watch out for.
CALABRIAN TARANTELL By Eric E. van Monckhoven
The music of Calabria is part of the Italian musical tradition. Like other regions of southern Italy, Calabria has a rich and diverse heritage of cultural traditions, including, for instance, the Calabrian Tarantella. Tarantella, pizzica pizzica, tammuriata are a large family of traditional dances. In some areas, they are associated with the ancient ritual against the bite of the tarantula, the poisonous spider.
Nobody knows exactly the Calabrian Tarantella’s origin, but the dance was transmitted orally from the most ancient times – supposedly when Calabria was part of the Magna Grecia and the home of many Greek settlers. Calabria is still hosting today a strong Greek ethnic minority in the Reggio Calabria and Locride coastal areas.
Whether formally or informally, whenever there is an event, small or big, that brings together two or three seasoned musicians with tambourines and concertina, a crowd will invariably gather and begin to dance with the sort of precise and energy-saving movements that characterize the Calabrian Tarantella dance steps. As a passerby, you first hear the rhythmic pulses and accompanying jangle of the tambourine, then the bouncing, reedy tones squeezed out of the concertina. Upon turning the corner, you see the little crowd, swaying and tapping to a snappy folk tune. An impromptu assembly invites audience participation.
This video shows the tarantella "riggitana", played, sung and danced by pilgrims devoted to the Madonna of the Mountain at the Sanctuary of Polsi di S. Luca (RC) on the feast days of 1 and 2 September.
A dance master (mastru d’abballu) is chosen and takes his position at the center of the circle composed by the assembly who is clapping hands. Then, he heads to the audience and chooses a partner, inviting her with a slight bow as a sign of respect. After some rounds, he invites other dancers to join in. The dance is strictly codified and limits physical contact. A dancing party can last long, with haunting and enthralling rhythms – also thanks to the abundance of wine.
Musical instruments of Calabrian Tarantella are: zampogna (bagpipe), substituted often by organetto (concertina/button accordion), with tamburello (tambourine). Additional instruments are the Calabrian lira, the “chitarra battente” (strummed guitar), “Pipita” and “Fischiotta” (shepherd flutes), depending on the area. Rhythm is based on terzine (1-2-3) with time in 12/8 and sometimes in 6/8.
Interested in Calabrian Tarantella music and artists? Contact Calabria Sona in email@example.com, a full service music agency dedicated to the promotion of music “Made In Calabria”.
Picture of landscape: Santa Domenica Talao, Cosenza, Italy, from Pexels.
EFN STATEMENT ABOUT THE INVASION OF UKRAINE
On March 1st, the Board of the European Folk Network made this statement, that we want to repeat here:
The European Folk Network celebrates what distinguishes us as people and what we have in common as people. The waging of war undermines these precepts.Therefore, we condemn in the strongest terms the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, and the death, destruction, and disruption of everyday lives it has brought. We particularly condemn the violence against civilians, especially children and the vulnerable.
The European Folk Network is a network of musicians, organisations and communities across the whole of Europe and we know that dialogue and not aggression resolves disputes. We invite our members to develop practical steps to support those artists and music professionals, and above all, people, who will suffer from the effects of this war and to work to create a dialogue for peace.
If you are able, you can donate directly to a number of funds at the following URL: https://ukrainewar.carrd.co
HOW TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS NEWSLETTER Are you already a member? Then, remember that you can submit contents for this monthly newsletter. Email your content to firstname.lastname@example.org, for these sections:
· News from EFN Members. Brief announcements – of maximum 100 words and a link.
· Featured artist. A profile with 200 words, an embedded video and one link. Members are invited to submit profiles, considering solo and ensemble living or not living artists who have achieved lifelong artistic and technical quality or historical significance in the field of folk art from/developed/settled in Europe. If you have any artists in mind that you'd like to feature, please ask in advance, just to be sure there is no other member already doing it.
And whether you are a member or not, you can participate in this section:
· Special sections. For instance, an interview with someone from an institution that is not a member or a thematic article by a guest writer or anything that can appear and be considered as interesting. This section can also host guest writers that are not members. If you'd like to share any content, contact us in advance to schedule it, in email@example.com
Of course, self promotional articles lacking interest won't be accepted. In case of doubt, the board will be consulted and it will decide.
BECOMING A MEMBER? EFN membership is growing rapidly – why not join the network of traditional arts organisers and artists that stretches across Europe from the Irish Sea to the Baltic, the Mediterranean to the Black Sea? Find out more about membership and download an application form from www.europeanfolknetwork.com/membership.
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