August 8, 2011

Tamburitzan Extravaganza 2010

Here is a previously written post, which I just got finalized today.....
First...remember how I am very fond of Eastern European (and etc.) folk music, song, dance, etc.?
Remember how we found the Duquesne University Tamburitzans, and became life-long fans?
Well, whether you do or not:
When Tamburitzans graduate, most of them actually join other music groups, or start their own! Amazing, isn't it! You can only begin to realize how many CDs that makes for a fan to buy...!
Anyway. If the ''Tammies'' have Croatian or Serbian (or both) in their background, they have or belong to, a ''Tamburitza'' ensemble. We know several of these groups which comprise mainly of ''Duquesne Tamburitzan'' alumna!
And...once (or twice) in a lifetime....several of these groups come to SAINT LOUIS!
And I am in St. Louis!
I never thought I'd get a chance to see these people/groups live, but as a surprise for my Birthday last fall, my Mum found out about it, and we went! (It turns out one doesn't have to pay a mass fee just to get in at all, as I assumed. One just has to pay for what one is interested in attending.)
It was held at a big hotel near the airport.
It's the Tamburitza Association of America Extravaganza, which takes place at a new city every year.

Us girls who attended, eating our lunch out by the hotel pool.
(We didn't stay at the hotel,BTW)

Sisters enthusiastically hopping about
The Extravaganza, lasted a few days. We went twice, (Thursday and Friday) and on both days got to learn dozens of Croatian/Serbian circle dances! (Kolos) In the picture we are struggling to get our feet to do what they were meant to. It is semi-difficult to enthusiastically indulge in energetic steps and at the same time keep them small and tight. But we learned a lot, enjoyed ourselves and had a very pleasant time.

The second day, we were excited to attend a costume workshop, where we learned about dozens of beautiful antique folk costumes from Croatia, Serbia, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Slovakia, and the like!

I love this Bulgarian sleeve! Look at how intricate it is!

Typical Balkan dancing shoes (opanci)

Serbian costume (a fav.)

The back of an amazing Croatian costume- I love how the back of it is just as beautiful as the front!

One of my favorite Bulgarian costumes

Two Macedonian costumes
(Surely you recall reading of ''Macedonia'' in the Bible!
Acts 16)

The Croatian gift company which sells my sister Nikola's beautiful hand designed and crafted beaded bracelets was there, with four remaining ones to sell. Nikola bases each design on a Croatian folk motif. (From costumes, etc.)

My Mum!
We also went to a ''Gypsies of Eastern Europe'' workshop, which was highly informative and interesting, as we love Gypsy music!

Later,  dozens of musical groups played from 10 pm to 1 am in several different rooms, so one could wander at will from room to room, listening to one's favorite groups! There was even dancing in the bigger rooms. What fun to dance folk dances to such wonderfully performed music!
And....we met several favorite ''Duquesne Tamburitzans'' alumna.
We know a wide range of ''Tammies'', since we have many old videos, even from the 80s. So, at the Extravaganza, we got to meet musicians  who had been ''Tammies'' in the 80s, 90s, and even recent ones whom we had seen on stage more than once.

We finally got to meet one of our favorite Tamburitzan alumna, Katia Romaniw!
She is one of the friendliest people! We showed her pictures of our little sister Katia, who was, in a way, named after Katia R.!
When she was a ''Tammie'', she was one of our favorite singers and dancers:

Katia, who is Ukrainian, in a costume from that country.

I wish you could hear her melodious voice! She still accompanies her husband Peter Kosovec, another favorite Tamburitzan alumna, on his numerous and fantastic instrumental/vocal CDs!
We had seen Katia on stage recently, but never met her. And her husband, Peter, who is famous in the Tamburitza world, we had never even seen on stage. But we have the ''old'' videos of when he was a ''Tammie'', and his new CDs, and that's enough to make him a favorite.

Peter Kosovec

He plays that little ''tamburitza'' instrument fast as lightning!

You can pause my music at bottom of blog, and listen to this as you finish reading the post!

Peter, second from left, in one of the 3 groups he is part of! He certainly was busy, going from room to room to play with the groups!

The Jerry Grcevich Tamburitza Orchestra. (Jerry is on right)

Us dancing the first day

peter k.

Dario Barisic- a Croatian singer/tamburitza player.....
(A Duquesne Tamburitzan alumna, too!)

Mark Stafura (also a Duquesne Tammie alumna)

The previously mentioned Peter K.

Hope you enjoyed the post!

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