The Festival aims at bringing together dancers from Latvia and different countries of the world, who would creatively explore, get to know and inherit folk dance traditions. There will be dance groups from Bulgaria, Chile, India, Indonesia, Cyprus, Russia, Poland, Senegal, Serbia and Ukraine. However, Latvian folk dance traditions will be presented by dance groups of different ages from Riga, Kuldīga and Rēzekne.
The central thematic axis of the festival programme is the number nine, which has always been magical for the Latvian people. It has been included in countless folk songs, proverbs, sayings, and is often referred to as a triple-size, or “three times nine”. The author of the artistic concept is Mrs Dace Circene. The Festival is organised by the Latvian National Centre for Culture in cooperation with municipalities of Kuldīga district, Liepāja, Rīga and Sigulda district.
The Festival “Sudmaliņas” will be opened in the capital city with a participant parade in the streets of Old Town on Tuesday, July 9, and with an opening concert at the Dzegužkalns OpenAir Stage on July 10. This is the second time when there will be a contest for the dance groups; the performance of participants will be evaluated by an international jury. Everyone is welcome to attend and support contestants on July 11 at the VEF Culture Palace.
The Festival will continue on July 12 with an open-air concert at Vērmanes Garden, masterclasses and charity concerts. However, on July 13, the participants will be going to Sigulda and Kuldīga to perform their own dance programmes. The closing concert and award ceremony will take place on Sunday, July 14, in Liepāja.
The International Folk Dance Festival-Contest “Sudmaliņas” has been taking place since 1992. The author of the idea is Mrs Ingrīda Edīte Saulīte, the Honorary Chief Group Leader of the Dance Celebration and a choreographer. During the years of its existence (1992, 1995, 1997, 1999, 2002, 2005, 2009 and 2016), the festival has gained traditional stability and received high evaluation from our foreign guests, Latvian dancers, the audience and the critics. In eight previous festivals, 117 Latvian dance groups and 100 dance groups from 46 other countries have taken part therein.
Atklāšanas koncertā trešdien, 10. jūlijā, kā daudzkārt tautas pasakās sacīts, no trejdeviņām zemēm, pāri trejdeviņām jūrām un trejdeviņiem kalniem Rīgas Dzegužkalnā dejas viļņus un “Sudmaliņas” iegrieza dejotāji no vairākām pasaules valstīm un arī Latvijas. Festivāla atklāšanā skatītāji klātienē varēja izbaudīt gan pazīstamus, gan neierastākus deju soļus, krāsainus zīmējumus, ritmus, katra ansambļa dejotprasmi un raksturu. Vairāku ansambļu priekšnesumus pavadīs mūziķu grupas, kas vēl pilnīgāk atklās dejas enerģētiski emocionālo atmosfēru.
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