Culture Centre Krakowiacy Song and Dance Company
The offer of the Culture Centre for children and youth covers folk dance, eurythmics, ballet, and classical and contemporary dance. There are two ensembles developing within the structure of the centre: the 60-person-strong Krakowiacy Song and Dance Company and Mali Krakowiacy Children's Song and Dance Company gathering nearly a hundred little singers and dancers.
The Krakowiacy Song and Dance Company was established in 1951. Initially it was a constituent of the Krakow Labour Cooperative. Since 1990, it has operated as a municipal culture institution. Krakowiacy performed at over 2,000 concerts in Europe, Africa, and South America. The Company participated in numerous international folklore events. Most worth mentioning among the countless awards and prizes, cups, and statues are the Pipe of Peace - Grand Prix of the COSCUIN World Festival in Argentine and the silver statue of Christopher Columbus for the most attractive presentation of national culture in Huelva, the port Columbus embarked from to discover America.
The programme performed by the Krakowiacy Company contains dance and song suites devoted to various regions of Poland, and especially to Krakow and Małopolska. The concerts of the company, thanks to the frequent changes of costumes and props, and the rhythmical music, are highly spectacular and dynamic.
Established in 1977, the Mali Krakowiacy Children's Song and Dance Company is highly successful in the promotion of Polish folk culture. The Polish customs presented by the children on stage refer to the four seasons of the year. Thanks to this, the spectators can see both the Christmas Carollers with the ferocious aurochs snapping its maw, spectacular Easter śmigus-dyngus water throwing customs from the famous Emaus fair in Krakow's district of Zwierzyniec, children's pranks in a flowery spring lawn, and the dance of the Lajkonik Hobby Horse in the Main Market Square of Krakow.
Mali Krakowiacy presented their programme in Poland and at international folklore festivals in the Czech Republic, Austria, Turkey, and Slovakia. The work of the two companies is directed by the Director of the Centre, Zbigniew Terlecki. The companies have their own choir, ballet, and orchestra. The two companies promote Polish folk culture (with special emphasis on the Krakow region) in Poland and abroad.
The Centre organises also classes in eurythmics and ballet groups for children of 7; currently these groups provide tuition for 50 persons. There are also courses in pair dance, and jazz and rock singing. The structures of the Centre include the Studio of Classical Dance and Theatre of Open Creations contemporary dance group awarded the prize of the Ministry of Culture and Art for the creativity and dramaturgy at KALISZ '99 7th International Presentations of Contemporary Dance Forms.
The Piwnica Artystyczna (Artistic Cellars) in Meiselsa Street provides the premises (place for the artists' rehearsals and performances) for music groups (jazz The Willows Revival Singers and rock-jazz X-Funk), choir (ArtPi Gospel Choir), and Piotr Piecha, a singing actor of the Ludowy Theatre in Krakow whose recitals initiated the operation of the Scena Poezji Śpiewanej i Piosenki Autorskiej (Stage of Lyrical Song).
The Centre is the organiser of the Musical Fair in the District of Kazimierz and coorganiser of the Krakowiak Folklore Festival.The Centre houses the Main Executive Board of the Towarzystwo Przyjaciół Kultury Ludowej (Society of Friends of Folk Culture) and the publishers of the Łan. The Krakowiacy Song and Dance Company is a member of the International Council of Associations of Organisers of Folklore Folk Art Festivals (CIOFF).