Lemko singers restore memory of oldest women’s songs
Ruty Uwite are eight girls and women aged 30 to 60, from the Beskid Niski mountainous region. “Some of us hail from ethnic minorities – Julia, Mariola, Hania are all Lemkos – yet we all have a sense of connection to the Lemko region through the place we live in and what we do.” They sing ancient, long-forgotten women’s songs. “We make no attempt to sing beautifully. We don’t have our voices trained. We meet in various locations: at home, in different public institutions, and wherever people invite us”.
We need female bonding
Ruty Uwite will use mini-grant funds to record an album with the oldest known women’s songs written down by Oskar Kolberg and other ethnographers. Most preserved Lemko songs are pieces by women, accounts of their inner worlds: love, hate, jealousy, anger, some full of rebellion only expressed in music.
Yet the music album itself isn’t everything. The whole group feel that time spent together, talking, bonding – all that matters. “We have our first experience of singing together and seeking out songs behind us. We want to develop and take on new challenges. We need female bonding”.
Grant amount: 4315.00 PLN
Photos by: 1. Ruty Uwite, 2. Jakub Przewoźnik, 3. Jerzy Parfianowicz