OSKAR KOLBERG POLISH DANCERS IN 1984 - 30TH JUBILEE OF THE FOUNDING OF THE GROUP
PROGRAMME NOTES FROM PERFORMANCE AT HAMMERSMITH TOWN HALL 1ST MARCH 1964
"OSKAR KOLBERG (1814 -1890) was a Polish ethnographer and composer, author of "Piesni Ludu Polskiego" (Polish Folk Songs) and a
monumental 40 volume work "Lud" (The Polish Folk) on the traditions and customs, costume,rituals,
songs and dances of nearly all regions of Poland.|
To commemorate Oskar Kolberg's work and achievements a Polish Dancing Group adopted the name
OSKAR KOLBERG POLISH DANCERS. This group of Polish young people organised themselves on 23rd
September 1953 with the aim of learning and performing the Polish folk dances in an artistic way,
yet based entirely on the pure folklore form, rejecting any ballet-like stylishness of the
dances, costumes and music.
In the course of the ten years of its existence the group has reached
over 130 membership figure and given over 120 performances in London and the Provinces, both for
the Polish and general public, and including participation in serious concerts, festivals and
They were helped first by Irena Karpinska, ethnographer and author of a
book on Polish national costumes, joined by Zbigniew Gedl, pianist, composer and conductor, and
later on by Barbara Duleba. Olga Zeromsak a well-known choreographer and folk dancing lecturer,
is the group's choreographer and artistic director from the very beginning of its coming into
existence. It is in co-operation with the group and thanks top the many experiences it provided
her with, that she recently completed her 220 page book "Polskie Tance Narodowe i Regionalne"
(Polish Dance - National and Regional) Pub. Alma Books Ltd (London 1962) describing 91 dances
and being refered to by some of the critics as "the modern encyclopedia of Polish Dances". The
Oskar Kolberg Group is to a great extent composed of university students. The eagerness and
enthusiasm of its members has been a tremendous help in the development and work of the group."
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Last update: FEBRUARY 2001