We are glad to announce that Folk dance ensemble „Sietuva“ (Vilnius, Lithuania) in 2018 create new dance production: Dance performance „B+K“: the legend of Birute and Kestutis.
IDEA and CHOREOGRAPHY – EDMUNDAS ZICKA
MUSIC – DONATAS ZAKARAS
COSTUMES – NERINGA SAVODNIKIENE
SCENOGRAPHY – IEVA BELECKAITE
The subject of the dance performance is a beautiful legend, which was recorded in the Lithuanian chronicle of Bychowiec as follows: “Kestutis, ruling in Trakai and Samogitia, heard of a maiden of Palanga named Birute, who, according to the pagan custom, had promised the gods to preserve her chastity and was herself honored as a goddess. And Prince Kestutis himself went there, and the maiden pleased the Prince because she was very beautiful and wise, and he asked her to be his wife, but she did not wish to consent and answered that she promised the gods to remain chaste until the end of her days. And the Prince took her from there by force, and with great respect accompanied her to Trakai, his capital. He invited his brothers, held a large wedding feast, and took Birute as his wife.”
We have held premieres in Vilnius, Marijampole and Kaunas already!
Moreover, we are proud to inform, that our Youth Folk dance ensemble “Sietuva” won the highest award of amateur arts groups in Lithuania “Aukso paukštė” (“The golden bird”) as the best folk dance ensemble of 2017. This is the second award for our group! The first Golden bird our ensemblehave get as the best folk dance ensemble of 2003. We are very proud of these achievements.
This summer our Folk dance ensemble “Sietuva” participated in one of the biggest folklore festivals in Europe – Summerfest 2017 in Hungary. Ten days and nights folk dance groups from 17 countries, among them a lot of groups from South America and professional dance ensemble from Bashkortostan (Russia), had been participating in different festival events in Százhalombatta, Tököl and Ráckeve towns.
All participants were very good and complied with high standard of quality. Thus, it is more pleasant to announce that our folk dance group “Sietuva” got invitations to folklore festivals in Colombia and Mexico. Moreover, organizers of Summerfest 2017 invited us to come back in the future. We are very appreciated for these invitations.
We would like to thank all festival Summerfest 2017 guides, staff, volunteers, audience and festival director Mr. Jozsef Szigetvari, who definitely is the best director!
It may sound unbelievable, but we have visited China not only in 2015, but also in 2016! This year our Folk Dance Ensemble “Sietuva” participated in Macao International Youth Dance Festival. But let us start from the beginning.
First stop of our trip to China 2016 was Hong Kong. It is a modern city with wonderful night views from Victorian peak and warm water in Stanley beaches. Banks, hills, skyscrapers and ferries – it is the shortest descriptions of modern Hong Kong city – an “incense harbour”.
However, the main goal of our tour was Macao International Youth Dance Festival. The festival was really big: it unites 10 local and 17 foreign dance groups from all over a world. During the festival, participants represent various dance styles: starting from the folk dances and up to modern and contemporary dances. For us it was really interesting because such a variety of different dances is very unusual for the festivals taking place in Europe. Everything in the Festival was high quality: excellent organization and accommodation, professional dance groups, friendly and helpful organizers. It was really a great pleasure to participate in this Macao International Youth Dance Festival. We liked the Festival very much and we will keep it in our hearts for a long time 🙂
We are glad to inform, that our Youth folk dance ensemble “Sietuva” participated in TV show “Kadagys”. It was first TV project-competition in Lithuania where folk dance group from all the country every week prepare special performances for TV audience.
It this project our dance group tried to combine different dance styles. For example: folk with modern. So, we are present for you second our dance, folk in modern “The red evenings”:
2015 OctoberFestival in China
It was far far away. It was in China 🙂 We participated in Luoyang Heluo cultural tourism festival. This trip – the most interesting event in 2015 for our group! Because we were in China for first time! Another culture, food, people and air. It was really exciting trip. We visited Shanghai, Ancient city Chenghuangmiao, Luoyang, Longmen Grottoes, Shaolin temple, Shanxi jincheng Royal Prime Minister’s Palace, the Great Wall and Summer palace in Beijing. We tasted a lot of Chinese food, participated in different festival events and spend money in colorful markets. We like these ten days very much!
2015 August“Erasmus+” and Italy
6-15th of August our group visited Italy. We participated in “Erasmus+” program “Hi bro”! It was beautiful trip. During this trip we visited Lavello, Pignola, Savoia di Lucania, San Gregorio Magno, Matera and capital Rome. Italian food, vine and melodies were everywhere! Thank you very much for such good program! It was very interesting to talk with refugees from Africa and meet with Italian Lavello community.
Best wishes for organizers!
2015 JuneWe win Grand prize!!!!!!
In May 2015 our Folk dance ensemble “Sietuva” participated in student’s folk dance ensemble contest “Kadagys 2015“ in Birštonas, Lithuania. This contest which is organized once in a four years is the biggest event for student’s folk dance community in Lithuania. In the competition every ensemble must represent a 30 min dance show accompanying by live music only. We are HAPPY AND PROUD TO ANNOUNCE THAT OUR FOLK DANCE ENSEMBLE “SIETUVA” WON THIS COMPETITION AND RECEIVED THE GRAND PRIZE!
2015 JanuaryTrips to neighborhood: Minsk (BY) – Gdansk (PL) – Daugavpils (LV)
2014 was the “trips to neighborhood” year for folk dance ensemble “Sietuva”. Our group participated in Baltic student’s song and dance festival “Gaudeamus XVII” in Daugavpils (Latvia) in summer. Also in the beginning of September we attended the festival “Wilno w Gdansku” and represented the capital of Lithuania for a visitors and citizens of Gdansk (Poland). Moreover in the end of 2014 our group visited Minsk (Belarus) where we performed in Christmas market show, which was held by Vilnius municipality.
2014 JuneGaudeamus and Song celebration
This summer our Youth Folk dance ensemble „Sietuva“ will participate in two big events: Baltic student‘s song and dance festival Gaudeamus XVII in Daugavpils (Latvia) and Lithuanian Song celebration „Here is my home“ in Vilnius (Lithuania).
27-29th of June Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian students will gather in Daugavpils town. This time dance groups, chorus, musicians will have separate performances. On 28th of June Folk dance groups from three Baltic countries will held two performances in Daugavpils Olympic centre.
The Lithuanian Song celebration will be held on 2-6th of July in Vilnius. This festival of folk art is the biggest event in Lithuania. Moreover, in 2003, UNESCO has proclaimed the tradition of the Song and Dance Celebration in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity and in 2008 it has been inscribed in the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
Dance day of Lithuanian Song celebration will be held on 5th of July in “Liepkalnio” stadium. In this event will participate two dance groups of our Youth Folk dance ensemble “Sietuva”.
Do not miss the opportunity to see this event!
2014 MayNew promo video
We represent new promo video:
2013 JulyFestival of Azores
Youth folk dance ensemble SIETUVA (Vilnius, Lithuania) will participate in XXIX International folklore festival of Azores in Terceira island. Groups from Costa Rica, Slovenia, France, Hungary, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Taiwan, Venezuela and Lithuania will present their culture for citizens and tourists of Terceira.
Our group participate in international festivals every year and is open for cooperation. You can send your information to firstname.lastname@example.org
2013 MarchAn event in Lithuania folk dance community
Folk dance in today’s Lithuania is an art branch that is propagated by different age amateur dancers. To be accurate, it is a community consisting of about 315 amateur and 1 professional dance ensembles, who every four years gather to national Dainų šventė (The Song Festival). The latter is not only the greatest event for the folk dance groups but it is also important as a major source for the renewal of their repertoires. Of course, seeking to spice up dance repertoires the majority of ensemble directors are trying to prepare their own dances or asking colleagues for help and only some of them decide to make a whole program on their own. It is quite natural, because the development of a nice concert program requires not only relevant human and financial resources, but also a lot of creativity and efforts from the authors. Quality of dance group performance, relations with both choreographers and composers, resources of ethnographic materials are no less important. However, lack of mentioned materials has been indicated already in 1983 by Vladas Bartusevičius – former artistic director of national ensemble Lietuva. In his monograph Lietuvos meno baruose (Lithuanian folk art bars) he has remarked that reserves of folk dances descriptions do not seem to exist anymore and that even a new title of the folk dance is a real discovery.
Thus it is a pleasure to announce that the sixth decade counting Folk Dance Ensemble Sietuva of Vilnius College of Technologies and Design is going to introduce a new folk dance program Teka upė (The River Flows). The composers of the program are Jūrate Baltramiejunaitė, Diana Moisejenkaitė, Nijole Sinkevičiūtė and Arūnas Rakšnys. Lithuanian folk dance melodies were harmonized by Laurynas Vaitkus (conductor of ensemble’s folk instruments orchestra). Choreography author is Edmundas Žička – an artistic director of ensemble Sietuva. This is the first program of this author the realization of which took almost three years.
Teka upė is almost an hour-long concert programme which was designed on the basis of Lithuanian folk dance traditions without using any elements of modern and classical dance. It is comprised from 10 dances created especially for this programme. The majority of dances have folk grounding or equivalent in folk choreography and three of them are totally made by author himself. There has been carried out a significant preparatory work in studying Lithuanian folk dances and folk choreography examples.
When creating a concert programme it was an attempt to unite dances into a single story thus bringing programme closer to dance performance. The audience should decide on was it a success. The main theme of the program is a fictitious story about Him an Her whose fates were unexpectedly interrupted by powers of nature.
The first performance of the programme Teka upė will be on 11th March in Šalčininkai Cultural Centre.
The main theme of the program:
They live on different sides of a wide and torrential river. Every evening He passes the bridge and meets Her on the other side of the river. They dance together until the dawn in village celebration. But once…
Celebration comes to the end and the time for everyone to say goodbye is very near. Musician merrily plays the last polka for this night and gets ready to go home. However the youth wants to continue dancing and asks the musician to play at least one more melody. He agrees to play only if the chosen girl will fulfill his request. Dreamy tune of waltz calmly flows in the air. Only She is not happy with this last waltz. She anxiously seeks for a displeased lover’s look. The dance is over, everyone goes home and She misses a chance to explain everything for Him. Stormy and swollen river breaks down the bridge and they can’t meet. So He decides to rebuild the bridge and with group of fellows goes to the forest for timbers. She waits for Him on the other side of the river till the night comes hopping to give an apologize…
The bridge is rebuilt and new celebration starts. Being in a dismal mood She is the first who comes to the dancing place but He is not here yet. Youth plays and dances. Couples are eager not only to compete with each other by showing more and more difficult steps, but also to learn new steps and dances. Enjoying the dance it seems that the evening will never end…
2012 JulyReturn from France
Folk dance ensemble SIETUVA has just come back from 48th International festival de Folklore de Chateau Gombert in Marseille and we are eager to share with you our impressions: huge open stage, warm weather, refreshing sea and of course very interesting and great participants.
The organizer of the festival, dance ensemble from France, impressed us by a large number of dancers and high dance quality. Participants from Singapore enraptured everyone by their oriental colourful costumes and the abundance of decorations. Specific features of Montenegro ensemble were sportive appearance and quickness of feet. That was incredible to listen to professional orchestra from Martinique. Furthermore it is worth to mention ensemble from Paraguay which astonished spectators by tricks with the bottles and sounds of harp. In the festival we became good friends with professional ensemble from Armenia and group from Scotland. There is a short video reportage about all mentioned participants of the festival. Sorry in advance for the low quality of the video, but nobody has donated a video camera to SIETUVA yet 🙂
In the festival SIETUVA captivated others by Lithuanian lyricism and northern reserve. We played our traditional wedding programme and some dances from the new repertoire. We won’t hide that time tested wedding programme got the most applause.
In the end we would like to thank everyone who traveled together, our great drivers, support team in the homeland – Jolita and Andzelika for the surprising parcel, Ausra for the flag – and all others who were waiting for us to come back.
2012 JuneFestival in France
Folk dance ensemble SIETUVA (Vilnius, Lithuania) will participate in 48th International festival de Folklore de Chateau Gombert in France. Group from Armenia, Scotland, Montenegro, Paraguay, Singapore, Martinique and Lithuania will present their culture for citizens and tourists of Marseille and surroundings.
2011 JuneGaudeamus XVI
„Sietuva“ this summer will participate in student‘s song and dance festival „Gaudeamus XVI“.
The three Baltic States share not only the Baltic Sea and the unique culture, but also an old tradition of song celebrations. The students’ song and dance celebration “Gaudeamus” having existed for more than a half of century is a significant live cultural event of the three States, a shared tradition of students’ song celebrations on the Baltic seacoast. The first Baltic students’ song and dance festival “Gaudeamus” was held in 1956 in Tartu, Estonia, then followed by festivals organised in turn in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
Lithuania continues this meaning mission by hosting the 16th “Gaudeamus” celebration to be held in Vilnius from 24 to 26 June 2011 and looking forward to receive over 4500 singers, dancers, musicians and performers of other genres coming from all three Baltic States.
The festival‘s events will be held in the Vilnius City Hall, in the old town, at churches, at the White Bridge and Kalnų Park.
2011 JuneThe world culture festival in Berlin
Folk dance ensemble „Sietuva“ together with Lithuanian student folk dance ensembles from country’s all Universities – about 300 dancers – will dance in the World Culture Festival in Berlin.
After celebrating the 16th Baltic students’ song and dance festival “Gaudeamus” in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius on the eve, the students will present their joint dance composition “Lithuanian folk dance suite“ in the Olympic stadium in Berlin. Several folk dances from country’s several regions are united in one joint swirl and burst from students’ young hearts.
More information: http://www.worldculturefestival.org
2011 JanuaryKrakow and Vilnius
Firstly, we would like to inform that at the end of 2010 our ensemble “Sietuva” has visited Krakow town in Poland where has participated in “Vilnius days”. Four couples of dancers from our Folk dance ensemble had performed in the main square of Krakow Old Town.
Secondly, according to the contest “Kadagys” results, which was held at the 14th of November in Vilnius, our Folk dance ensemble “Sietuva” has the best folk instrumental orchestra! Moreover, our musicians got a special prize for the most expressive musical composition.
2010 October“The road of freedom”
„Sietuva“ has its own personal brick in the recently opened “The Road of Freedom“ sculpture at Vilnius!
We are very happy that our ensemble had an opportunity to participate in the creation of this historical sculpture. We believe, that this brick of „Sietuva“ will be a symbol of everything what we together hold and dear.
2010 JulyFestival in Italy
This summer Folk dance ensemble SIETUVA has participated in international SILE FOLK festival 2010 in Treviso, Italy. Group from Slovakia, Mexico, Switzerland, Italy, Holland and Lithuania have presented their culture for citizens and tourists of Treviso and surroundings.
We are proud that the organizers of the festival gave us opportunity to close the most important concert in this festival.
In this trip we have visited such cities as: Venice, Burano, Jesolo, Verona, Wien.
2010 MayThe Sweet Taste of Victory
On May 15 „Sietuva” has performed at the contest at Klaipėda „Klumpakojis 2010“. We are excited that our ensemble won the first place!
25 dance groups from all Lithuania have attended at the event. The competition consisted of two parts and „Sietuva“ participated at the second part together with 16 competitors. However the jury decided that dances „Priegalvėlis“ and „Žemaičių galiopas“ were the best that evening, so we become the winners! For excellent performance and victory sincere thanks to all the dancers, musicians, supervisor V. Usovas and I. Česnienė. I. Česnienė gave advice and lessons how to make our dance “Priegalvėlis” perfect and helped us by participating in every rehearsal before the competition.
The first place requires further promoting folk dances, so on May 20 “Sietuva” will participate in the concert “Visi po viena saule” (All under One Sun), which will be held in Vilnius, the town square.
On June 24 “Sietuva“ is invited to participate at the „Joninės“ celebration in Naujoji Vilnia. „Sietuva“ will present a programme, which will be showed at the international festival in Italy on July.
2010 AprilUpcoming Performances
As every spring „Sietuva“ is actively rehearsing and preparing for many performances. April 29 together with other ensembles from Vilnius we will celebrate the international dance day and show a beautiful concert. On May 4 „Sietuva“ will participate in the opening ceremony of Spartakiad of the construction and engineering colleges from Baltic countries. One of the most important concerts this year will take place at Klaipėda: on May 15 there will be a contest „Klumpakojis 2010“.
„Sietuva“ has plans for summer too. We are invited to present Lithuanian culture and to show a programme of national dances at Italy on July.
We are glad, that this year „Sietuva“ was asked to participate at many international festivals which take place at different countries. On August some dancers from „Sietuva“ together with an ensemble „Vilniaus pynimėlis“ will perform at Azores Islands (Portugal).
Good luck and successful concerts for everyone!
2010 MarchWho’s Who in Dance
We where invited to update information about our Folk dance ensemble “Sietuva” to the CID global directory Who’s Who in Dance.
CID (Conseil International de la Danse) is the official umbrella organization for all forms of dance in all countries of the world. It is recognized by UNESCO, national and local governments, international organizations and institutions.
On February 16 we had a performance in Vilnius to commemorate the day of restoration of Lithuania’s independence. On March 5 we will take part in the concert in Birstonas. And on March 11 our ensemble will perform at Vilnius Cathedral square.
We are glad to inform that according to Lithuanian folk dance ensembles classification by Lithuanian folk culture centre our ensemble grant 1st (highest) category.
2009 OctoberA Good Start
A new dance season has just started, but we had some performances already. On September 1 Sietuva greeted teachers and students at the collage. On September 3 we congratulated the principal of the collage, as she was celebrating an anniversary. On September 19 we dance for “Travel channel”.
We are happy, that this year a lot of new members have joined Sietuva. They participate at rehearsals and soon will have their first performance.
This year we are planning to participate at the festival „Linksminkimos“, contests „Kadagys“ and „Klumpakojis“, visit Moldova.
2009 OctoberOur Motto: to Participate
The Millennium Song Celebration of Lithuania Songs of the Centuries has passed but it is still alive in our memories. However it is not the only thing to remember. Last summer was very busy for Sietuva. We are happy that there was no time to have a rest.
After the celebration in Lithuania Sietuva has gone to international festival in Bitburg, Germany. Every day we showed our program at the town squares while every night we participated at entertaining parties in the hotel. Youth from Poland, Slovakia, France, USA, Croatia, Czech Republic and Lithuania agreed that nights are suitable not only for sleep and rest, but also for meeting and having great time together.
After the trip we planned to have holidays and finish dance season, but Sietuva was asked to participate at TV show music video shoot. Dancers took an offer with enthusiasm. Just some rehearsals and we were ready to make a great performance. Now Sietuva can show not only national dances, but also can make some classic or hip hop steps easily.
2009 SeptemberGreetings to Sietuva
“This year was the second year that I was able to enjoy the friendship of the members of Sietuva. After the visit to our festival in 2008 in the Netherlands, I have been twice to Lithuania to visit the members of Sietuva again. This year I was even able to join them on the trip to Bitburg in Germany. I would like to thank all the people of Sietuva for the interesting, but most of all fun time, I had both in Lithuania, in the bus and in Germany. Really thanks for a great time…”
Rob van Hofwegen
2009 JuneIn July
Busy time come to the ensemble, as preparation and rehearsals for the Millennium Song Celebration of Lithuania Songs of the Centuries start on July 1. The final performance Dance day In the Trails of Time will take place in the Žalgiris Stadium on July 5.
Straight after celebration on July 8 the ensemble goes to international festival at Germany, where we hope to meet participants from more than ten different countries. We are planning not only to show our program at the festival, but also to do some sightseeing and visit Berlin, Trier, Luxembourg and Prague. This trip will remarkably finish 2008/2009 dance season.
2009 April Spring – Busy Time
Even when the sun shines brightly and calls to spend some time outside, the members of the ensemble are happy to attend rehearsals and improve dancing technique. After a beautiful anniversary concert of the art director Vladimiras Ūsovas and concertmaster Arvydas Baleniūnas, “Sietuva” started to prepare for Millennium Song Celebration of Lithuania Songs of the Centuries. On April 21 we entertained and showed Lithuanian traditions to participants of “International week” at college. After that on April 23 the ensemble introduced Lithuanian national dances to foreign students. A busy month was finished on April 29, when together with other national dance ensembles from Vilnius “Sietuva” celebrated international dance day.
2009 March Partway of the Season
On February 16, “Sietuva“ together with other national dance ensembles from Vilnius participated in traditional concert to commemorate the day of restoration of Lithuanian statehood. Specially for this occasion we prepared new dances. However this is not the only important concert to “Sietuva”. On February 4, dancers performed at charity evening, all money what comes from the evening was for sanatorium school.
On February 22, the writer (who is a grandfather of one of “Sietuva” dancer) introduced a book and asked the ensemble to entertain guests. That evening was great and warm not only for the audience, but for the dancers too. People were glad to see our dances and wished good luck.
“Sietuva” performs not only at Vilnius, but also at other towns of Lithuania, so on March 11 we were invited to Šalčininkai. The audience was amazed how many different costumes we have and how fast we can change them.
2009 JanuaryNew plans for 2009
In 2009 ensemble „Sietuva“ prepare to participate in traditional concert to commemorate the day of restoration of Lithuanian statehood (February 16), in the beginning of march to celebrate 70th years of ensemble director, to prepare for millennium dance and song celebration in July and to visit International folklore festival In Germany.
We hope that all plans will realize successfully.
2008 AugustGuest from Terneuzen (NL)
This summer we had a guest from Netherlands. It was a volunteer from “Folkart” festival – Rob, which for more then two weeks come to Lithuania. Specially for such occasion our group had organize a trip to Dzukija region (South east of Lithuanian). The region, which is famous for its forests, hills and mushrooms.
“Gruto park” (the park of Soviet sculptures), museum “The voice of forest”, Druskininkai town, Liskiavos abbey, Merkine town, black ceramic workshop and finally sauna – it are the places which we had visit that time.
Moreover, we had show Vilnius, Trakai and Uzutrakis. We hope that it was nice aquitance with our country
2008 JuneFolk festival in Netherlands
In May dance ensemble “Sietuva” had participate in folk festival “Folkart 2008”. Together with groups from Slovenia, Belgium and others our group took part in different events ant concerts. For the ensemble it was the second introduction with Netherlands. In 2006 “Sietuva” had participate in International Folklore Festival “OpRoakeldais” in Warffum.
Ensemble would like to say Thank you for an invitation and for the opportunity to present our culture. The whole ensemble had a wonderful time in Netherlands. It was a really beautiful, warm and sunny feast of folk dances. We are grateful for hospitality. Especial thanks for all volunteers. Good luck.
2008 MayTrip to Riga
In 23 of April Folk dance ensemble “Sietuva” went to the nearest foreign country – Latvia. The group had participate in Opening ceremony of Baltic countries Games among colleges of constructions and gave concert together with Latvian’s ensembles.
We expect that this cooperation will continue and next year all ensembles meet in this event again.
2008 April Performance in Klaipeda city
In 12 of April Folk dance ensemble “Sietuva” performed in Klaipeda city in anniversary concert of Song and Dance company “Zilvinas”. An invitation to take part in this event were not accidental: recent director of ensemble “Sietuva” Vladimiras Usovas almost 20 years had been the director of ensemble “Zilvinas”.
2008 FebruaryNew dance “Ausra”Dance “The dawn”
The members of ensemble are glad every time then the repertoire are replenished by new dances. This time it is dance for 12 girls “Ausra” (“The dawn”). Choreographer – Alfredas Kondratavicius. This dance is creating especially for the our ensemble and the premiere is supposed 0n 16 of February.
It is stylized dance with difficult music and light effects applied for the beginning of the concert.
2008 January Last year
The season of 2006/2007 was successful for ensemble: group participated in Lithuanian Song festival, International Folk festival in Germany, held more than 15 concerts. Reproduced the dance programme, stitched new costumes.
In the beginning of 2008 ensemble arrangement is as follow:
16 of February – Performance to Commemorate the Day of Restoration of Lithuanian Statehood (Vilnius, Lithuania)
22-25 of April – Trip to Riga (Latvia)
3-14 of May – Trip to Netherlands
2007 SeptemberTrip to International Folklore Festival in Erfurt
After the rehearsals and performance in Lithuanian song festival (the biggest folklore event in Lithuania) ensemble “Sietuva” went to Erfurt. Group had been invited to participate in International Folklore festival “Danetzare’07” (Erfurt, Germany).
Groups from Hungary, Slovakia, FYR Macedonia, Serbia, Chine, Spain and Indonesia had present their culture on this festival. Almost all week the city of Martin Liuter were home for international meeting and it were really wonderful week.