Ethno-trio Troitsa play Belarusian folk

Troitsa group from Minsk

Ethno-trio Troitsa play Belarusian folk

This small musical group - the ethno-folk trio “Troitsa” - exists from the middle of 90th. It even became the winner of the competition “Make way!” organized in 1996 by Soros's Fund.

However, the trio became recognized only after the leader of Russian rock group "DDT" Jury Shevchyuk paid attention to it. Shevchyuk visited Minsk once and heard records of “Troitsa”, so he invited the musicians to take part in the concert of "DDT”, and, then, in 1997, Jury invited them on the Rock-festival “United world” in Petersburg. Since then "Troitsa" became more popular, but much more in Europe, than on the native land.

Initially " Troitsa" included Ivan Kirchuk, Dmitry Lukjanchik and Vitally Shkilenok. In 1998, in Holland, on the studio “Pan Records” they recorded a CD called “Troitsa”. After that the trio broke up. However a year later two young musicians joined to Ivan Kirchuk, their names were Jury Pavlovski and Jury Dmitriev. - In this composition "Troitsa" exists till now. They recorded some compact discs and audiocassettes; the repertoire consists of Belarusian national songs exceptionally. They have been written down still during Ivan Kirchuk's ethnographic expeditions. But it is difficult to say exactly, how many songs Ivan Ivanovich's archive contain. He says:

- I did not count. In general, I have about hundred cassettes and each sounds about two hours. But they contain not only songs, but also fairy tales, ballads, legends and instrumental music. There are also stories of old women about different vital situations, about belief in wood-goblins, demons, mermaids. This is all an ethnographic material.

However, how is it possible to select exactly those songs, which then, after the certain arrangement, will be able to fascinate listeners, Ivan Kirchuk says:

- Something inside me prompts the right decision. At first I thought: there is a bookshelf, it has ten shelves, and each shelf has three lines of cassettes. Can you imagine the quantity of the material?! And you, being guided by your feeling, take the cassette and listen to it during two - three hours. And, then, you feel that you go mad and suddenly you hear a song. You understand: it is what you need. Sometimes you are touched by a text, or a unique phrase “kills”! Either a melody or an intonation in a voice…  In fact the Person was born with a song. And with a song he died. Recently I have heard an interesting idea: the person cried, being born, and cried then died. Tear and song accompanied him from the beginning of the way and up to the end. And in fact there are tears of pleasure and tear of grief. I also like an idea: each museum thing carries the information of those people who lived in that time. It has been already proved. And, of course, that musical material, which we sing, carries information from those times as well. Perhaps, it can’t be compared with the information which an ancient jug carries. X-raying the jug, it is possible to find out the century of its creation. We cannot determine the time of a song’s appearance, can’t we? It is unknown, from what time layer the origin of a song grows. We simply settle down into this source. And if such contact occurs, finally, only then a song starts to sound. Perhaps, then it touches other people as well. It is, probably, the most gold concept which only can be born.

Though nobody speaks about absolute authenticity of the creative work of "Troitsa”. Kirchuk confirms this:

- It is authentic only in a village or on a cassette. We make a stylization of authentic folklore. In other words, we try to keep a melody, dialects, nuances, and breath of those old men or old women, a text - up to that we keep words from Russian, Belarus or Ukrainian languages in one song. And if we somehow finish this song, so we are the authors of a new product.

Jury Dmitriev adds:

-Authenticity is an unattainable thing. But, in any case, we have especial relations .May be, in this sense, "Troitsa" is even more boring, then all other groups as we work with a folk material extremely carefully. We study authenticity rather scrupulously not only to make arrangements, but also to preserve the primary source. However, it is necessary to note that the trios don’t try to alter the original greatly. The amount of musical instruments is really impressionable. They use both Belarusian national instruments such as gusli, pipes, duda, and instruments from the whole world: domras, cymbals, handbells, the Dutch gong, the African drum, the African cane, ocarina, modern drums, lyre, electro-and acoustic guitars. The trio use even scythe (which mow grass). However, musicians use the African or Indonesian instruments only in a case, when they understand, that their sounding will be to the point that they go with Belarusian songs on timbre and character.

But, despite trio’s bright originality, they give concerts in Belarus extremely seldom. For a long time its basic tour ways are laid to Europe: Poland, Holland, Serbia, Bosnia, Hungary, Netherlands, and Austria…  In Europe “Troitsa” give some tens concerts in the season, whereas in Minsk they can act only once a year. And it is practically impossible to explain such inattention on the side of Belarusian listeners.

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