Folklore brings together the Albanian community in New YorkPrishtina, 7 November 2017 - The Nationwide Folk Festival has gathered yesterday in New York, USA, hundreds of singers, dancers, music bands and ensembles from the Albanian-American community, as well as from all over Albanian lands.
The message of this festival, which this year is dedicated to the 550th birth anniversary of the Albanian national hero, Gjergj Kastrioti - Skënderbeu, is the preservation and promotion of our tangible and spiritual heritage. Organized by the Albanian Catholic Church "Our Lady of Shkodra" in Hartsdale, New York, the 27th edition of this festival takes place at the Lehman College Arts Centre in Bronx, New York. A key role in this organization was played by the first artistic and cultural group within the American community, "Rozafati", established three decades ago at the Albanian Catholic Church "Our Lady of the Good Counsel" in New York.
"In fact, Rozafati is the organizer of this festival, and Angjelina Nika is the one that teaches hundreds of children the Albanian dance in Mother Theresa Cultural Centre. And Angela's contribution and its role is priceless in preserving these cultural values", said for RTK, Marjan Cubi, head of the Mother Teresa Cultural Centre, at the Church Our Lady of Shkodra in Hartsdale. The children of this group from the three states: New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, from 5 to 23 years of age perform each week Albanian dances at the "Saint Mother Theresa" centre in Hartsdale by the choreographer Angjelina Nika, former dancer of the State Ensemble of Albania who was decorated by President Nishani with the title "Great Master".
There are hundreds of children to whom every year we teach them about dances and costumes from Kosova, Albania, Çamëria and all Albanian lands, and most importantly in here children speak Albanian. We take make sure our kids know our dances and thus pass this to their children and so we can keep alive this cultural heritage for next generations, because if we forget our children will not know anything about it... “ told RTK the choreographer Angjelina Nika.
The mission of this pan-Albanian festival is to identify, document and present the nationwide Albanian folklore, to keep the Albanian community united, regardless of religion or province. The festival aims to preserve and support the Albanian autochthonous folk music and tradition and to ensure their existence, to be passed and to have meaning for future generations.