Welcome to Ukraine’s largest online archive of musical folklore!
The project of recording the songs featured on this website was started in 2014 by a small team that has grown into an international collaboration of almost thirty people by now. Owing to them, last year it was possible for us to cover nearly a hundred villages and record more than two thousand songs.
This dynamically growing cultural enterprise seems to be a real success story, but truth be told, the past four years have abounded in hardships and loss of faith in addition to all the achievements. The power that helped us overcome any obstacle was drawn from the substantial experience these songs gave us. The same experience brought about the desire to learn these songs. As our work progressed, each new experience broadened our horizon: we wanted to better understand the background of the songs and their complex correlations, not only on the level of each village, but from a broader perspective.
The website we are launching now is unprecedented insofar as it aims to convey this perspective to society in the broadest sense. It aims to help and guide the broad public. This website is not an end product but a stage in a long-term concept, which hopefully already merits the attention of our target audience. We feel the time has come for us to continue this work in public. The next stage is development. Based on user experiences, the interface will be enhanced with new functions, and by continuously uploading newly collected recordings, the online corpus will keep expanding. We expect the integration of social media and the development of our learning module to open up perspectives in use and popularisation that the involved sub-fields – performance art, education, research, information technologies, etc. – alone would not be capable of.
At this point, dear reader, you may think you can lean back and relax, as the work is done, the recordings are complete. The real challenge, however, is just beginning. If the people do not begin to (re)use these songs after they are recorded, they are bound to have the same fate as dead languages: they disappear from daily use and dwindle into mere subjects of research for a handful of linguists. On the other hand, if they become a part of people’s daily lives, this “passive set of data” will be brought back to life.
Your help is needed! Listen to the recordings, learn and sing the songs, pass them on! In exchange, these songs open up a little more each day and there is a good chance they will transmit the messages they contain, giving lifelong support to those who cultivate them. In the course of our several months of field work, we had the heartrending realisation that this wonderful culture is indeed in its final hour. The amount of high quality information we can salvage from the days of yore at the inevitable dawn of a new world depends on your contribution as much as on our work. One thing is certain: if this common goal is realised, the new world will surely be a slightly better place.
project coordinator, folklorist
full stack web developer
Ph.D, professor, ethnomusicologist
Dr., professor, ethnomusicologist
Petro Honchar, Yevgenia Popova, Bérczes László, Kiss Móni, Szőke Tímea, Petrányi Barna, Iryna Telyukh, Iryna Danyleyko, Bohdan Hdalʹ, Csajkás Júlia, Olena Skrypka, Iryna Voloshyna, Yuliya Vasyuk, Józsa Ferenc, Tóth Teodóra, Maria Kovalchuk, Alexandra Kiryanova, Szőnyi Vivien, Both Ákos, Oleksandr Techynskyi, Antonina Zaytseva, Tibor Babiczky, Matyas Sirokai, Zoltán Hajdu, Attila Árki, Krisztián Varga, Jenő Hartyándi