2023.10.06_IV CZANGO_Toruń

IV Csángó Festival in Poland – summary

Between 6 and 8 October, the 4th Csángó Festival in Poland took place in Toruń. A festival which unites supporters of the traditional cultures of Hungary, Poland and Ukraine and allows them to experience the goodness and beauty of dancing, singing and making music together. Although the event has passed, the emotions will remain with us forever.

Csángó (Csángó) is the official and popular name of the Hungarians living in Moldova, a region within the borders of Romania; they are an ethnic minority of Hungarian origin in that country. The Csángó arrived there partly in the 9th century and partly in the 13th century and speak the Old Hungarian language. For many years, the Changs were not allowed to cultivate their own culture.

Today, thanks to the efforts of the Consulate General of Hungary in Gdansk and the Aeris Futuro Foundation, we can learn here in Gdansk about this extraordinary culture that has maintained its identity and traditions for 500 years in a land governed by foreign nations.” – this is what the hosts of Dom Zarazya, where we opened the autumn edition of the Festival, wrote on their website.” – this is what the hosts of Dom Zarazya, where we opened the autumn edition of the Festival, wrote on their website.

The Csángó Festival in Poland is a good example of the flourishing of the dance house movement and, at the same time, of traditional culture: we dance, make music and sing together. The fusion of temperaments and the explosion of joy in making music and dancing together by Polish, Hungarian and Ukrainian artists created the extraordinary atmosphere of the next edition of the Festival.

The richness of the Csángó culture was presented by Hungarian artists, including representatives of the Csángó people: from Moldova – Mária Petrás, the most famous folk singer and artistic ceramicist, and from Gimesz – the great violinist and dancer István Lukács, a pupil of the legendary blind violinist Janos Zerkula. Csángó melodies were also played by outstanding reconstructionists and multi-instrumentalists – violin virtuoso Gergely Sámsondi, flutists – Dániel Bolya and Vajk Máté Gyulai. There was also Farkas Gyulai, an acclaimed violinist and Csángó singer. Csángó dances at the highest level were taught by Juliá Skopp, István Lukács, Farkasa Gyulai and Gergely Sámsondi.

The atmosphere at the concerts and dances, which lasted until late into the night, was amazing. Jacek Hałas talked verbally and musically about his inspirations with Hungarian culture, including Chango, during Friday’s concert. Polish music inspirations, especially from the Beskid Niski region, were sensationally presented by Kapela Maliszów. We could taste the Polish-Ukrainian borderland through the sounds of Paaweł Iwan dulcimer, Serhij Ochrimczuk and Maksym Nakonieczny‘s violin, Severyn Danyleiko‘s bass and Józef Sowa‘s baraban. There were also regional accents – bands playing Kujawy music – Agregandado and Skrzypkowie Dzielni – appeared on the stage of the Ethnographic Museum. The icing on the cake this year was Kazimierz Nitkiewicz playing the trumpet and accordion, and the biggest surprise was Anton Korolev playing the fiddle combined with the trumpet (the so-called Stroh fiddle), both musicians’ improvisations on traditional melodies evoked great enthusiasm among the participants.

The Toruń Museum also hosted an exhibition of paintings by Hungarian artist Júlia Dávid. The artist, who hails from Transylvania, is inspired by Hungarian folk art, reinterpreting it and transferring it to her colourful paintings on canvas and glass.

New this year was an event for families with children called ‘Family Nest’, with artists presenting games based on folklore: Polish – Marta Domachowska, Ukrainian – Olena Gajdyczuk, Hungarian – Júlia Dávid, István Lukács and Dániel Bolya accompanied by Joanna Mieszkowicz. During the break, the children enjoyed a healthy snack of organic dried apples donated by the EKO-ŁAN Association.

During the festival, visitors could taste Hungarian wine, Ukrainian specialities from the Touch Nature Foundation, vegan dishes from Chwast Prast and Torun gingerbread from the Living Gingerbread Museum.

A beautiful conclusion and expression of gratitude for the Festival was the Holy Mass in the Church of the Holy Spirit, during which Wolf Niklaus of Schola Węgajty sang a Byzantine song and Farkas Guylai a Protestant psalm about David, accompanied by Vajek Máté Guylai on the koboz lute.

Joanna Mieszkowicz, director of the Festival and co-founder of the Aeris futuro Foundation and its long-standing president, expressed the view that traditional culture and ecology share common values, such as respect for the land we live on and minimalism understood as the economical use of limited resources and the exchange of goods and services to strengthen resilience to the challenges facing the world in the 21st century. One of the practical implementations of the idea and thus the promoted Green Event standard was the arrangement of the Museum’s rooms – all elements were borrowed, only the potted flowers and plants were purchased by the Tilia Association, which planted them on its grounds at Barbarka after the Festival.

„We would like to thank the organisers, the festival patrons and all the artists and participants for co-creating this extraordinary celebration of music, passion and the joy of being together!”– wrote the Ethnographic Museum in its report on the festival.

See you at the next Csángó culture events – feel free to invite us with a dance, workshops, concerts to your place, as well as join the organised ones, keep up to date by following our websites czango.pl and www.facebook.com/festiwalczango.

About the organisers

From Poland: Joanna Mieszkowicz, founder of the Aeris Futuro Foundation and long-standing President. She implements innovative projects for the protection and promotion of cultural and natural heritage. Enthusiast and teacher of traditional dances, including the Chango for more than two decades, she has participated in dance houses and camps in Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Hungary. Creative organiser of Green Standard events – she organised her first chango dance house in 2012, and has been doing it quite often since 2019, starting in autumn 2020 under the brand of the Czango Festival in Poland.

From Hungary: Gergely Sámsondi and Farkas Gyulai – as the Szépszerével band, they have been running a dance house in Budapest’s Gellert Hill (in spring and summer) and at the Hálo Club (in autumn and winter) every Wednesday since 2012. They draw melodies, dances, songs and folk customs from their own experience, as they are disciples of village musicians mainly from Transylvania (Erdély), now an area of Romania and once the Principality of Hungary. Unfortunately, most of the indigenous artists are no longer alive, hence the even greater value for participants here in Poland – the opportunity to touch living history.


Fundacja Aeris Futuro


 Muzeum Etnograficzne im. Marii Znamierowskiej-Prüfferowej w Toruniu
Konsulat Generalny Węgier w Gdańsku

Współorganizatorem wydarzenia jest samorząd Województwa Kujawsko-Pomorskiego.


Fundacja im. Wacława Felczaka w Budapeszcie

Fundacja im. Wacława Felczaka w Budapeszcie



DA Studnia Jezuici Toruń
Dom Tańca Poznań
Chwast prast
Przedszkole im. Marii Montessori w Toruniu
n obrotów
A. KONSUL logo_Marek_Pietrzak
Księgarnia „U Jezuitów”
Abraham Tokaj Wine Homemade
Lipóti pégség- bred, Hungary
Háló logo
Sasvölgy Bt HU

Media Patrons

Pismo folkowe
Muzyka tradycyjna

Similar Posts