It’s not folklore. It’s national identity.
It’s not a manifesto. It’s EVIDENCE.
From March 25 – the Belarusian Independence Day, 12 video-performances will be uploaded on the Internet, on social medias and in Tik Tok application, one a day, reflecting the Belarusian national identity in various forms. Each of them represents one of the ritual songs of the Belarusian calendar year. These songs come from various regions of Belarus and were recorded during ethnographic expeditions at the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries. The recordings are reproduced in detail: they convey the intonation, singing technique and language dialect of the presented regions of Belarus.
I am Belarusian. My country has been fighting for its own recognition and independence for a long time. We succeeded for the first time in 1918, but already in 1919 we lost it due to the events leading to the creation of the USSR. After its disintegration, we regained our long-awaited independence. But in fact, the influence of the Soviet Union is still hanging over our country with a dark cloud, destroying the greatest treasure of all Belarusians – our heritage. According to statistics, less than 30% of Belarusians speak Belarusian. Less than 1% of the country’s students receive education in their mother tongue. Knowledge about authentic cultural traditions is disappearing, and against the backdrop of intercultural space, Belarusian national identity rarely evokes associations about the distinctiveness of tradition: the visuality of folk costume, rituals or sung tradition.
In the hope of a true renaissance of Belarusian culture, and to draw as much attention as possible to the difficult situation of the country and to popularize the Belarusian national identity, the EVIDENCE project was created. EVIDENCE – as a legitimation, as an identity document, in which certain issues presenting the personality of its owner – here the nation – are inscribed. Showing this proof is nothing more than a certain gesture of breaking with the centuries-old tradition of suffering and slavery.