Croatian Folklore

Tamburaški Orkestar Kardinal Stepinac

Preserving rich Croatian culture
Vancouver, BC, Canada

National costumes are considered an integral part of a nation's culture and heritage. Croatian national costumes can be divided into three types: costumes in the interior, costumes in the mountains and near the cost, costumes on the coast.

Folk or national dancing is a distinct reflection of the historical, socio-economic and cultural particularities of specific regions. It plays an important social role, given that any significant group or community gathering is accompanied by dancing in the course of which people get better acquainted and connected, mutually displaying their spiritual and physical abilities. The various ways of participating in dancing show the social status of individuals in the group and community. In additional to bringing together members of various cultural groups, communities and peoples it has a marked educational role.

From the 19th century folk music began to be exploited as a means of promoting national and political ideas, initiating thus the concept of rooting national music in folkloric elements. In the second half of the century this idea was brought to fruition primarily by using popular tunes created during the period of National Revival in urban environments and through the activities of choirs and tambouritza groups which were being established as the first amateur music societies. In the 20th century, particularly in the period between the two world wars, national music drew on the traditional music of Croatian peasantry, recognised as the autochthonous feature of Croatian culture.

The "tambura" (expression for all instruments, that exist in a tamburica-orchestra) is an instrument with strings, related to the Russian balalaika, the Ukrainian bandura, the Italian mandolina, the Spanish guitar and other similar instruments. All these instruments originally come from the region of former Persia (today Iran), where the Assyrians already had a very similar instrument 5000 years ago. Up to now it is unknown, at which time the tambura came from her former country to the Croats and to other slavic people. In every case Bosnia is the old origin, from where this instrument spread over Slavonia (eastern-Croatia) and the region of Backa (todays Vojvodina). There the first tambura-groups had been founded more than 100 years ago. In the next 70 till 80 years these groups made the Tamburica known on the whole territory of south-eastern Europe.

"Hrvati" (Croatians) are one of the oldest cultural groups in Europe. Since the early centuries, as ancient Croatian tribes moved across Europe, they adopted, and adapted characteristics and traditions from many regions. The result is that Croatian culture today is uniquely distinct yet diverse. The diversity is particularly evident in the wealth and variety of Croatian folklore. From the intricacy detailed handicrafts and art, to the variety of music, song and dance, Croatian folklore has a richness that today still captivates audiences.

Croatian Canadian Folklore Federation West

Croatian Canadian Folklore Federation WestWe are members of the Croatian Canadian Folklore Federation West which promotes, enhances and preserves Croatian folklore ensuring cultural awareness within Canadian context.

Calendar Of Events

Every Monday: Tamburica, Klapa & Kolo, 7pm, Croatian Church Hall
Every Tuesday: Tamburica Škola, 7-8pm, Croatian Centre
Next Fest: Calgary, May 20-22, 2016