University of Pittsburgh
October 18, 2006

Pitt to Sponsor 16th Annual Slovak Heritage Festival Nov. 5

Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH-The 16th annual Slovak Heritage Festival-featuring Slovak song and dance, educational lectures and displays, ethnic foods and pastries, and vendors selling Slovakian merchandise-will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. Nov. 5 at the University of Pittsburgh Cathedral of Learning, 4200 Fifth Ave., Oakland.

This year's free event will include artists and speakers from Slovakia and Pittsburgh performing in the Cathedral of Learning's Commons Room. From the Slovak Republic, Jozef Ivaska, the Singing Revil'ak Family, and Dusan Holik will perform. The Pittsburgh Slovakians and Pittsburgh Area Slovaks, representing the Western Pennsylvanian Slovakian community, also will perform traditional dances.

Holik, a master fujara player from Ocava, will lecture on the making and playing of the fujara-a long shepherd's flute.

The Singing Revil'ak Family's repertoire includes Slovak and Carpatho-Rusyn folk art songs and international favorites, including American folk songs, featured in their 20-year performance history on European, Canadian, and U.S. stages. The family-the parents, two daughters, and a son- grew up singing in Bardejov, Slovakia, for which they received national awards. They produced several CDs that will be sold at the festival.

Ivaska, known in Slovakia as the Man of a Thousand Songs, will make his third concert tour of the United States. During the Communist era, Soviet officials forced Ivaska out of the country, banning his music. Currently residing in Austria, he performs operetta, rock, pop, jazz, and folk music internationally and sings tenor with the Metropolitan Operetta Theater in Slovakia. His CDs will be sold at the festival.

Ethnic foods including haluski, pirohi, klobasa, holupki, and pastries, as well as merchandise from Slovakia, will be available for purchase.

Pitt's Slovak Studies Program and the Pitt Students' Slovak Club are cosponsors of the event. For more information, call 412-624-5906 or email slavic@pitt.edu.

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