University of Pittsburgh
October 20, 2009

Pitt to Sponsor 19th Annual Slovak Heritage Festival Nov. 1

Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH-The 19th annual Slovak Heritage Festival-featuring professional song and dance performances by Slovakian artists, educational lectures and displays, and vendors selling Slovakian merchandise and ethnic food-will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. Nov. 1 in the University of Pittsburgh Cathedral of Learning, 4200 Fifth Ave., Oakland.

The free event, which takes place in the Cathedral of Learning's Commons Room, will include performances by such local groups as the Pittsburgh Slovakians, Slavjane Folk Ensemble, and the Pittsburgh Area Slovaks. For the first time at the festival, the University of Pittsburgh Carpathian Ensemble will perform. Slovakian artists include the Singing Revil'ak Family and Jozef Ivaska.

The Singing Revil'ak Family has performed in Europe, Canada, and the United States for 20 years. From the Slovak Republic, the family grew up singing in Bardejov; it has received numerous awards at nationwide laureate folklore competitions in Bratislava and Zilina, Slovakia. Cassettes and CDs of the family's music will be available at the festival.

Ivaska, known as the "Man of a Thousand Songs," will be making his fifth concert tour of the United States. Born in Ruzomberok, Slovakia, Ivaska was forced out of the country and many of his songs were banned during the Communist era. He currently resides in Baden, Austria, where he sings with the Metropolitan Operetta Theatre. Ivaska's CDs also will be available at the festival.

The event is sponsored by Pitt's Slovak Studies Program and the Pitt Students' Slovak Club. For more information, call 412-624-5906 or e-mail