Polish folk group Mazowsze

Posted on 12. Jan, 2013 by in Countries, Culture, music, traditions

Folk culture was for some time, when Poland did not exist on the map, perceived as the tool to keep the national identity. The artists, so much avoiding the theme of poor citizens, started to make the villagers main characters of their works. In the time of technical development, when citizens of villages would flee to cities in search of better life conditions, folk culture was in danger. Although we live nowadays in the world of internet, cheap flights and mobile phones, although folk culture seems not to be fashionable at all (if one can use this word in connection with any culture), there are still some people who try to keep it and promote it.

Although Mazowsze (in Polish “Państwowy Zespół Ludowy Pieśni i Tańca “Mazowsze”“) the Polish Song and Dance Ensemble was created by the decree of Ministry of Culture and Art in 1948, its idea was born much before. During bombing of Warsaw in WW II two people – Tadeusz Sygietyński (great composer and lover of folk culture) and Mira Zimińska-Sygietyńska (actress) – promised each other that if they survive the war they will found a folk group. Together with their two other friends, they started to search for folk clothes, music and gifted youth. They gathered young members of the group in the palace called Karolin, nearby Warsaw. After 2 years, in 1950, the group was ready to give their first performance on the stage of Polish Theatre in Warsaw. At first their repertoire was based on folk music and dances from Central Poland but with time they started to use folk music from all over Poland. Already a year later Mazowsze started their world tour reaching Soviet Union and later on giving concerts in France and United States of America.

Throughout the years there have been many outstanding individuals that started their career in Mazowsze Folk Group (i.e. actors and actresses). The ensemble consists of ballet, choir and orchestra. The group has given out already 6.5 thousand concerts during over 200 tournée around the world and performed in almost 200 places of Poland. The melodies used by Mazowsze come from approximately 40 ethnic parts of Poland but the group tends to use now also music from other countries. In the place that gave the beginning of Mazowsze ensemble – palace of Karolin – there are plans to form European Centre for Promotion of Regional and National Culture. The centre aims at educating of future culture educators from all around the world.

Mazowsze ensemble is, however, not only about songs and dance. It is also about beautiful national (or more precisely regional) costumes used in accordance with music. It shows the richness and beauty of folk culture and gets wider audience closer to the world that is known now mostly from movies and books.

Do następnego razu… (Till next time…)

About Kasia

My name is Kasia Scontsas. I grew up in Lublin, Poland and moved to Warsaw to study International Business at the University of Warsaw. I have passion for languages: any languages! Currently I live in New Hampshire. I enjoy skiing, kayaking, biking and paddle boarding. My husband speaks a little Polish, but our daughters are fluent in it! I wanted to make sure that they can communicate with her Polish relatives in our native language. Teaching them Polish since they was born was the best thing I could have given them! I have been writing about learning Polish language and culture for Transparent Language’s Polish Blog since 2010.

2 Responses to “Polish folk group Mazowsze”

  1. folk music of india 20 January 2013 at 7:18 am #

    I never heard the Polish folk music, but i think it will be the same as english folk music.

  2. Kelly Kirsch 29 January 2013 at 2:25 am #

    I am first generation Polish American and have seen Mazowsze. In fact, I have old Christmas albums that belonged to my Babcia that they recorded in the 50′s.

    And having seen/heard both English and traditional Polish Music I can assure you that they are most certainly not the same!

    Do widzienia!


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