Warsaw Village Band to Bring to UB Its Fresh Approach to Pure Polish Folk Music

By David Wedekindt

Release Date: August 30, 2004 This content is archived.


BUFALO, N.Y. -- The Center for the Arts at the University at Buffalo, in collaboration with the UB Polish Studies Program, the Polish Arts Club of Buffalo and the Kosciuszko Foundation, Western New York Division, will present Warsaw Village Band at 8 p.m. on Sept. 14 in the Drama Theatre located at the Center for the Arts on the UB North (Amherst) Campus.

The Warsaw Village Band was founded in 1997 by six young musicians dedicated to conserving and experimentally enhancing the traditional folk music of the Warsowia region in the heart of Poland. Featured many times on Polish television and radio, Warsaw Village Band has recently become an internationally recognized beacon of the traditional folk music of Poland.

The Warsaw Village Band shines the world music spotlight on Poland's traditional music by combining traditional ethnic folk music with modern elements. The band has created a genre of music they call hardcore folk -- thanks to their punk-like, yet traditional, singing style with its origins in shepherding. This fresh approach has earned them international recognition with the BBC Radio3 2004 World Music Award in the Newcomer category.

While traveling the Polish countryside, the band spent time with elderly musicians. Inspired by what they learned, Warsaw Village Band uses traditional instruments and musical techniques they learned from people they met. Lead singer Katarzyna Szurman revives bia?y g?os or "white voice," a type of powerful, melodic screaming used by shepherds to communicate across long distances. The band recreated the suka, an ancient Polish fiddle played with the fingernails. Warsaw Village Band also uses a 100-year-old Polish dulcimer, Jew's harp, bass, dhol and a hurdy-gurdy -- a unique instrument that sounds similiar to the bagpipe.

Tickets for Warsaw Village Band are $25. Tickets are available from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday in the Center for the Arts Box Office and at all Ticketmaster locations, including Kaufmann's. To charge tickets, call 852-5000; in Canada 1-416-870-8000. For group sales, call 645-6771. For more information call 645-ARTS. The Center for the Arts is a Ticketfast location.