Culture Supplement

Independence unites Kosovo and Albania in song and dance

Descriptive Text

Love for the homeland, preservation of heritage and passing them on to younger generations were the messages of the joint concert of the national song and dance ensemble "Shota" of Kosovo and the National Song and Dance Ensemble of Albania. "We are one!" it echoed as a message, and the union breathed on the stage

The joint concert of the national ensemble of songs and dances "Shota" of Kosovo and the National Ensemble of Folk Songs and Dances of Albania, has brought precious jewels of the Albanian tradition through folk songs and dances. The concert with which the two institutions marked the 16th anniversary of Kosovo's Independence brought together the heritage of the Albanian lands on the stage of the House of Culture "Xhavit Hajrizi" in Obiliq. Above all, it was a kind of cultural union of two Albanian institutions in the celebration of Kosovo.

The House of Culture in Obiliq was full on Friday night. All ages have been there, from children to the elderly. Each choreographic piece or song was accompanied by applause and cheers. The ensembles of the two institutions have become one in the interpretation of songs and dances. Love for the homeland, preservation of the heritage and passing them on to the new generations were the messages of the concert.

Congratulation, honors and gratitude for the sacrifice of those sacrificed for freedom were also conveyed. The entire audience rose to their feet as a sign of respect for the Jashari family. The son of the hero Adem Jashari, Bekim Jashari, was present at the concert. The Minister of Culture, Hajrulla Çeku, the ambassador of Albania in Kosovo, Petrit Malaj, the deputy Saranda Bogujevci, the deputy mayor of the municipality of Ulcinj, Sabri Salaj and the director general of the Kosovo Police, Gazmend Hoxha, were also there.

Beautiful voices and professional dancers have begun to unfold the wealth of folk songs and dances passed down through the generations. Every line of the song, sound of music and step of the dance have brought a harmonious atmosphere to the audience in the framework of the festive concert.

The program opened with the festive dance "Independence" performed by the "Shota" ensemble. It was a dance with very fast rhythms that is conveyed by the dynamic rhythms of the music. The party has culminated with him from the beginning. The jewels of musical creativity were brought through the choral suite by Alfons Balliçi and then the soloist Samir Krasniqi performed the folkloric song "Djemtë e Shlqipes" with a duet.

The whole space resounded when the soloist from the National Ensemble of Popular Songs and Dances of Albania, Lekë Preçnikaj, performed the song "Mountain Wedding" followed by Mirvete Haziri with "Song for Skënderbeun".

The hall was full, the enthusiasm and the applause were the reflection of the preservation of the values ​​of the Albanian tradition. The songs of this side and those of the south have been known to the public. The song "Lahutari" was also special. Performed by Aranit Hoxha with a powerful voice, the choir has kept it in the background.

The Popular Ensemble of Songs and Dances of Albania has brought "Chame Dance" by the master of choreography, Panajot Kanaçi. The wonderful playing of the Orchestra accompanied the movements of the dancers.

It has now become a tradition for the cooperation of counterpart institutions to mark important events.

The artistic director of the national song and dance ensemble "Shota", Ylber Asllanaj, said that these joint concerts are intended to reflect on brotherhood, unity and real Albanian art.

"Our goal is to preserve, carry and cultivate our tradition. Of course, the goal is to keep it alive, to pass it on to the generations to come. It is happiness because it means that our work, our effort, our daily commitment are being rewarded with applause, enthusiasm in the public and this is our goal. That's why we exist", said Asllanaj while considering that beyond the division by administrative borders, the two countries are united by tradition and culture.

"We have tried to make a joint concert on this holy day of the nation. One of the most special holidays for the entire nation across the administrative borders of Albania. We have administrative borders, but we have one language, song, dance, dress," said Asllanaj.

The director of the National Song and Dance Ensemble, Sokol Marsi, said that the two countries have beautiful folklore and that when the two institutions bring it together, it becomes more meaningful.

"It is always a special pleasure to collaborate with our brothers from the 'Shota' ensemble. We have been cooperating for years. The last one was at the Gjirokastra Festival, but it is always a very special pleasure. Even the title of our collaborative programs is 'We are one!' because we are one. We have a folklore, a heritage, a nation, songs and everything beautiful together. When we demonstrate it together, it becomes even more beautiful for the public in Kosovo and Albania", said Marsi.

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The House of Culture in Obiliq was full on Friday night

For the song "I got words" performed by Deniza Gjezo, the whole audience stood up and sang in unison. Likely in some kind of homage. "Your curls" was performed by the ensemble of girls of the Popular Ensemble, while the song "Drenica ime" was performed by Majlinda Cikaqi and the choir.

With their voices, members of the Choir accompanying the central vocals have often completed the performance. Chorister Loreta Musliu said that it was a wonderful experience of cooperation with the Albanian Ensemble.

"We are satisfied tonight with this extraordinary audience. Also because we have been in cooperation with the Albanian Folk Song and Dance Ensemble", she said.

For the chorister Jon Lekaj, the dedication of the concert was special.

"Tonight it was a very good feeling to perform in front of this wonderful audience. As choristers, we were very happy for the cooperation we made with the Albanian Song and Dance Ensemble. We were very satisfied, we had a great time and we are very happy", he said.

In the last part of the concert, the song "The river is coming", a collage from the south, performed by Deniza Gjezo, while the song "In front of the ball" was performed by the singer Riza Bytyçi. With "Lufton Drenica", the audience has joined Liridon Sadri.

Sadriu said that the interpretation of the song brought him multiple feelings.

"Performing such a song after 25 years since Manjola Nallbani performed it was quite a challenge and a pleasure at the same time. The audience gave me special emotion as it was fantastic support. Extraordinary feeling. Normally when two ensembles come together, we can call it a kind of national union. It is a great pleasure and honor for me to perform with them", he said.

The troupe of the national ensemble of songs and dances "Shota" and that of the Popular Ensemble of Songs and Dances of Albania have reunited on stage to perform the song "I'm Ilira, I'm Teuta".