"Research of traditional songs in Southern Bulgaria, 2010."

During the summer of 2010, I visited several villages in southern Bulgaria, where I met with the singers of folk songs. In each of the three visited regions of Bulgaria: Pirin Mountains, Rhodopy Mountains and the Shoppy region, I encountered a different technique singing, which is directly connected with the scenery - the shape of geographic space. It confirmed that the way we produce voice is related to the space. For instance, in the Rhodopy mountains the vocal line – legato singing without any particular rhythm reflects the shape of a very large mountain. In the Pirin mountains, which are sharp with many hills, songs are very rhythmical, also the rhythm is very dynamic with , 5/4, 7/4 and 9/4 metre dominating. People used to sing in two voices –with upper tones reflecting the sharp changeable line of hills and bourdon resonating upon the lower line of the valleys.
I also investigate – on the example of traditional songs - non-verbal communication among performers and the role of body language in vocal expression.
In my doctoral research I examine non-traditional theater spaces, mainly because of an interest in the impact of a specific geography on the way of using voice and performing.
For this, I completed an internship study in Bulgaria .

I come from Poland. Since 2006 I've been living in Prague,Czech Republic, where I'm now doing PhD studies in Theatre Academy DAMU in Prague.
I graduated
2007 - Warsaw University, direction: cultural science in Institute of Polish Culture, specialization: cultural animation
2004 - Theatre Academy Gardzienice (research of traditional music from Ukraine, Romania, Bugaria as a base by bulding perfomace)

My music interests is the traditional song and its connection with conteporary perception. In my music work I focuse on the dialog between the tradition and the modern styles , the collective way of singing (still alive in Balkans, less in my counry, unfortunatelly) and the personal expression.

I consider the traditional songs (from Western borders of Poland, Balkans and Slavic countries) as a common mother tongue for a many european countries as a source of creating the contemporary values in music and performances
In Prague I sing in a band KORJEN - with musicians from Bosna, Slovenia, Poland and Czech. Traditional songs from different countries (especially Middle European and Balkans) are inspiration to arrange them in our culturura context; in this way we share our music heritage, discover the ethnic patterns from diverse cultures as a point if departure in searching for our own music language.

Theatral experiences
Spectacles:

2010 - "Vodní Slípka", St.I.Witkiewicz, directed by Olya Rabets; Czech-Ukrainian-Slovinian-Polish theatre team, DAMU/WATER-TOWER, Prague
2010 - "Lanostory", site specifik performance that took place in the ski-ift in Czech Mountains Sudety; directed by Apolena Vanisova from DAMU. Prague
2009 - "Docasne v provozu", site specific performance directed by Biljana Golubovič from Monte Negro, Prague
2007-2008 – “Hat, stars and chicken pox”, “Willow Tree”, “Vakokodeska”, “Passing” - Continuo Theatre; Czech Rep.
2003 – “Zywot Protopopa Awwakuma” - Gardzienice Theatre; Poland
2003 – „Igraszki” - Theatre Academia; Warsaw

workshops:
Poland: Teatr Biuro Podrozy, Stowarzyszenie Teatralne Chorea
Czech: Divadlo Continuo, Rafael Degar – EOZ Theatre from Mexico
Denmark: Odin Teatret (actors training during Odin Week)
Slovakia: workshop with Gabor Goda from Hungary

Music experiences
Concerts with alternative groups from Warsaw: Zespol Polski, (traditional polish music enriched with the Tuvinian and Persian patterns), Yerba Mater (ethnic group inspirated by folkor of Persian, Armenian, Balkan music) , Ryszard Latecki (improvizing style), Rafael Roginski (sephardic and polish songs).
Workshops of traditional songs with: Natalka Poovinka, Monika Maminska, Mieczyslaw Litwinski, Elina Toneva, Mariana Sadowska,
„Voice alchemy“ with Olga Schweigier
Throat singing with Alash from Tuva

as a guest in Prague on concerts:
- MamaPama Banda, who is international group researching the music background of Hungarian, Balkan and Slavish folklor and creating their - conteporary version of traditional music patterns.
- ukrainien songs with Krystyna Salicka's concerts.

zurakowska.ewa@gmail.com

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