13th World Roma Festival KHAMORO opens in Prague 22 May

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 7th of May 2011   Source: romea.cz

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If you would like to experience a week-long marathon of Roma culture, then come to the 13th annual World Roma Festival KHAMORO, which takes place during the week of 22. 5. – 28. 5. 2011 in Prague. The festival, held this year under the auspices of Czech PM Petr Nečas and the Mayor of Prague, Bohuslav Svoboda, has been held in the Czech capital since 1999. Over the years it has been supported by many leading public figures, such as Václav Havel. KHAMORO is organized by the Slovo 21 civic association and Studio Production Saga.


KHAMORO ("little sun" in Romanes) will start on Sunday, 22 May at the Mánes Gallery with a reconstructed performance of a traditional Roma wedding ceremony. Leading Czech ethnologists and Roma studies scholars contributed to the design of the performance. "For a moment, visitors can become wedding guests at a genuinely Roma celebration and can experience its inimitable atmosphere. Like any wedding, it will feature the typical music of Roma people from eastern Slovakia and traditional Roma food," festival producer Dľemil Silajdľić says.


More than 100 artists and experts from 19 countries around the world will perform and present at this year's festival. The musical program, which is every year's greatest attraction, will consist of six concerts. On Monday a concert of contemporary Roma music at Retro Music Hall, on Tuesday and Wednesday concerts of world-famous Gypsy jazz, and on Thursday and Friday traditional Roma music at the ROXY. The festival culminates on Saturday with a gala concert at SaSaZu. The concerts of traditional Roma music feature bands from Bulgaria, France, Hungary, India, Italy and Norway. The Czech Republic will be represented at the traditional concerts by Mário Bihári and Bachtale Apsa, by the group Connection as part of the contemporary concert, and by the other groups who will participate in the traditional defilé march through the center of Prague.


The KHAMORO festival is not only about music. The accompanying program features a multi-genre exhibition entitled "Segregation seriously harms you and those around you" as well as the premier of the documentary film "®ENYvPOLI", which follows the lives of two young Roma women who become politicians. Just as in previous years, an important component of the festival is the academic program that features world-renowned experts every year. This year Khamoro is offering, in collaboration with the Office of the Government of the Czech Republic, an international three-day conference on the topic of inclusive access in the education of Roma children. All of the states involved in the Decade of Roma Inclusion will participate in this conference.


The City of Prague is a partner of the festival, which is supported by the Czech Culture Ministry, Prague City Hall, and other entities. Czech Television is the main media partner.


ROMEA, translated by Gwendolyn Albert


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