With this traditional Transylvanian Roma tune from the 'Taraful din Glasgow' band, Opa-Opa.org the first Roma led cultural network and online creative platform in the U.K. is wishing all Roma culture enthusiasts a happy new year in 2022!
'TARAFUL DIN GLASGOW', with band members Iulio Fechete, Liviu Lingurar and Marius Otves, who are also members of the Opa-opa.org Roma cultural platform, is a Roma band produced by Ando Glaso Roma Charity in Glasgow. Members ran away from the financial, social and cultural deprivation of the Roma community in Oradea, Romania many years ago where modern beats such as the popular ‘manele’ eradicate traditional Romani styles and values. Several Roma musicians aiming to maintain the traditional Roma music in Transylvania passed down for many generations would similarly leave their home countries to become street musicians in the U.K. and elsewhere in Western Europe. Marius Otves thinks that the education his children receive in the U.K. is of much higher standard than back in Romania which is another reason why they decided to permanently settle in Glasgow.
Taraful din Glasgow members come from traditional Roma musician families and all their musical knowledge and skills have been learned and developed in the family circle which they take pride in. The word ‘taraf’ is a loan word from Turkish and Roma use it to refer to a troupe of Transylvanian Roma musicians that will typically include instruments like cello, violin, tambourine, accordion and the Romanian bagpipes called cimpoi however a locally popular instrument will also be included such as a clarinet, a trumpet or a flute.
To make sure Taraf survives, Ando Glaso helped the three Roma men found Taraful din Glasgow, their first ever band and puts in support regularly by organising studio times, musical coaching, sound engineering, choreographing and promotion too. Taraful din Glasgow was the first East European Roma band to ever perform at the largest Gypsy European horse fair which is held every year in Appleby, England.
In 2021, Ando Glaso and KaskoSan decided to work together to grow the first national Roma cultural network in the United Kingdom and beyond. The two Roma charities based in England and Scotland aim to recruit the best Roma talent in the U.K. and please the opa-opa.org
audience with high quality Roma cultural productions and performances online as well as across festivals and other offline events in the U.K.