7 The next 7th edition of the festival turned out to be the most spectacular of the past. During the two January days, 25 choirs performed on the Terespol high school stage: 12 bands were applauded on Saturday, January 19, and 13 days later on a frosty Sunday, January 20th. In addition to choirs from Poland, there were two excellent bands from Russia and three no less excellent voices from Belarus. The jury, led by Dr. Vladimir Volosiuk, evaluated the choristers in five categories.
- In the group of folk and folklore groups, the best was the Sasiedzka Kapela performing with a singing band from Zakalinki. The proteges of the violinists Zdzisław Marczuk performed carols: Rozkwitnela sie lilija, W Betelejem przydrodze, Wsielennja wiesielisia, Skinija Zlataja and Radujtiesia wsi ludije, arousing the delight of the juror prof. Igor Maciejewski from St. Petersburg, who admired the authenticity and vocal skills of this popular and successful group from Constantynow. A small choir performed particularly well orthodox carols, which do not sing every day, as all members of this group are followers of the Roman Catholic Church.
- On the first day of the Festival the Belarusian Folk Band of Early Music and Song “Ostromieczewskije Lawony” from Ostromieczew surpised the spectators and jurors, who very impressively entered the stage with knockers, with burning candles and singing. Professional Belarusian artists presented a rich and unknown repertoire of Christmas carols on the eastern side of the Bug, using a wealth of folk costumes, chants and props, including goat dances and carol and feast songs. They received a second prize for their performance.
- The third prize won a young Family Band of Dziolak from Zakalinki. Four-year-old soloist Monika Dziolak, already having a tv debut, makes a real furore with her performances. Unfortunately, this was the last performance of this talented girl at the Festival of Christmas Carols in Terespol. In July this year, she and her parents were killed in a coach accident over The Hungarian Balaton, making a pilgrimage to Bosnian Madjugora. In this category, the “Pogodna Jesien” from Constantinow and Bialski GOK were awarded.
- The choir “Signum Spei” from Zamosc under the direction of Anna Konopy-Cios left behind a great artistic impression. In Terespol they won the 1st place in the category of children’s and youth bands. The group, which has been in existence for almost 9 years, has already won several international and national Festivals.
- It even had to be given priority by the Children’s Choir of the Center for Aesthetic Education in St. Petersburg, Russia, led by Tatiana Samoilewa. Thirteen girls performed five songs very subtly. According to the journalist of Slowo Podlasia word reporting the 7th edition, the group from St. Petersburg charmed the audience with the freshness of the performance of christmas carols Tichaja Nocz and Rozdestwo.
- The young choir “Sonatina” from Miedzyrzec Podlaski, led by Ewa Lancut- Nestoruk, was also a revelation. This time she appeared in a double role, as the author of words for the five presented works. The fact that the competition in this category was extremely even can be evidenced by the very turbulent deliberations of the jury.
Dr. Vladimir Wolosiuk presiding jurors so for the Dziennik Wschodni assessed the level of the first day of hearings:
After the discussion, the judges decided by a majority that the band from Zamosc, which had a very rich repertoire, had won. The choir from St. Petersburg is less than a year old. His director did a great, beautiful job. You could hear beautiful sopranos, but it’s all too fresh. Band from Zamosc is more European. An interesting choir became “Sonatina”, which should depart from the accompaniment, and Mr. Marczuk from Zakalinki sing folklore just as grandmothers and great-grandmothers once sang.
- In the Sunday edition of the festival, the furore was made by the Youth Chamber Choir “Lauda” from St. Petersburg under the direction of Marina Kiryeva. He too was rated highest in the category of secular choirs.
- The third place, (the second was not awarded), won the choir “Tercja” from Swidnik led by Bogdan Lipinski.
- A special award of the Mayor of Bielska Land, received the choir “Miodunica” from Klejniki in Belarus. He enchanted the audience with a joyful performance of Christmas carols: Nowa radost stala, Nebo i Zemla, Cicha noc, swieta noc o and the Hymn of the Trinity Troitca.
- In the category of city parish choirs, the class for themselves were the singers representing the parish of . St. Nikolaus in Brest. Under the master leading of Iraida Ivanchenko, the choir perfectly performed beautiful-sounding songs and carols of the Orthodox Church: Chieruwimy Swiat, Nowa Radost or Boh narodiwsia. You could feel the dignity and pathos of choral singing.
- Behind the choristers from Brest was classified “Cante Domino” from the Roman Catholic parish of The Lord’s Sacrifice from Warsaw.
- Only the third prize received the cathedral choir of St. Trinity Cathedral. from Hainowka.
A little in the shade there was a rivalry of rural parish choirs. Bands in which amateurs sing, often without any musical preparation and necessary trials, for this quite few personnel could not arouse such delight as in the case of choristers from Belarus or Russia.
- According to the jurors, the best impression was left by the choir of the parish of Holy Cross Exaltation from Swislocz in Belarus, mainly as noted by the journalist of Slowo Podlasia, reporting on the festival: thanks to the charming melodica and excellent voices.
- The second prize was received by the youth “Schola Laudamus” from Janow Podlaski.
- The third prize was awarded to the Choir of the Orthodox Parish of Klejniki and the choir of the Orthodox Parish of The Ascension of the Lord of Novoberezow. The last two awarded choirs came to Terespol from the Podlasie region.
- The judges this time decided to award as many as three special prizes: funded by the Marshal of lublin province got this time in the hands of a beautifully singing trio ,,Triodion” from the Orthodox military parish from Ciechocinek near Bydgoszcz, mayor of Bialski Land , went to Miodunica in Belarus, while the award of the organizers enjoyed the choristers from the Folk Song Band “Malanka” from Bielsk Podlaski.
Each of the winners of the festival received a commemorative diploma and a cash prize funded by sponsors. The organizers sent their heartfelt words of thanks. In the sent letter, signed by Mayor Bialski Land Bogusław Zadlo, Director of the Municipal Cultural Centre in Terespol Krzysztof Krol, prot. Jarosław Los rector of the Orthodox Dean of the Terespol Region and prot. Lt. Col. Aleksy Andrejuk rector of the Orthodox Military Parish in Biala Podlaska, reads:
With the help of the State, the audience was able to experience a spiritual feast. It is in such meetings that we prove that mutual understanding, kindness, and tolerance are possible regardless of origin, faith, or beliefs. In a border town that is the future border of the European Union, we have shown that culture is an area that does not recognize borders. The growing interest in this event from performers and the public proved that as organizers we have achieved our goal.
Therefore, we are especially grateful to those who support us spiritually and materially. We hope that the idea of caroling in Terespol started 7 years ago will continue on this land for many years to come.
During all editions of the festival, starting with the V, performances of choirs and groups were judged by a professional jury in an extended composition. His work was led from the very beginning by Dr. Vladimir Wolosiuk, assistant professor of MACC Orthodox Practical Theology. In addition, fr. pr. prof. dr hab. Roscislaw Kozlowski – head of the Department of Practical Theology CHAT, Fr. Mitrophoric prot. Michal Niegierewicz – director of the School of Psalmists and Conductors in Hajnowka, prof. Igor Macijewskij musicologist from St. Petersburg, Jerzy Zawisza, director of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage and Ryszard Ferens – music teacher at the Terespol general high school.
Father Jarosław Los, one of the co-organizers of the festival in the pages of Goniec Terespolski evaluates its 7th edition:
Carol entered to the Orthodox Church in Poland a few centuries ago, also took to the streets, came to the houses, and in modern times opened the doors of philharmonics, schools, houses of culture.
Lower Podlasie is the cradle of paralyturgic songs, also caroling songs, very rich in local traditions, characteristic even for one village. The meetings in Terespol are intended to cultivate these traditions and spread them. This year, according to the chairman of the jury, Dr. Vladimir Wolosiuk, there were very interesting, almost medieval Eastern Carols from the XVI century.
The journalist of Slowo Podlasia, who reported on the 7th edition of the festival, wrote: The level of this year’s festival was high. For two days, there was a unique atmosphere in the gymnasium of the General School Team.
Tomasz Jezuit, a former judge of the first editions of the festival, author of a thesis on caroling in Terespol in addition to many positives, also sees its shortcomings:
During the organization of such an event, which is the festival in Terespol, in addition to satisfaction, there are many problems and doubts. Already before the 7th edition, the organizers asked themselves a lot of difficult and embarrassing questions, such as: Could we avoid many shortcomings and mistakes that occur on our part? How to change the whole festival to encourage parish choirs again, as amateur as possible, where the performers of the notes dictate heart and faith? These questions and many others remain open.
Tomasz Jezuit rightly cites in this work the words of Marek Pietrzela from Dziennik Wschodni, summarizing the 7th edition: The hope remains that next year the international festival will take place in better conditions in the new hall in Terespol and with the appropriate organization.