Hornacko Folk Festival attracts visitors with wine, women, song

A unique folk festival took place last weekend in Southern Moravia. Called the Hornacko Festival, it was held in two villages in the Hornacko region to show off the local customs, but is obviously a lot of fun for the locals themselves. The local people need little excuse to show their love of dancing, singing, eating and drinking their famous plum brandy, called slivovice. Alena Skodova has the story.

The Hornacko region is truly special when compared to other parts of the Czech Republic: almost all the local customs and habits seem to have been preserved here since time immemorial. It's in these local villages where you can see people wearing typical colourful folk costumes, and not only for occasions such as this, but as their everyday clothes.

The Mayor of Velka nad Velickou, Jiri Psurny, told RP why the Hornacko Festival was so unique:

"The festival is exceptional because all the performers come only from Hornacko. Our region is special, even though it only has around ten thousand inhabitants. So it's not a festival of just any kind of folklore but of one, very specific kind of folklore. And as far as I've heard, our festivities are especially popular among the intellectuals, as most of the visitors usually come from the big cities."

The villages of Velka nad Velickou and Kuzelov resounded with Moravian folk music throughout the weekend, and there were many dancers here as well, of both sexes and all ages.

And here's one visitor who came to discover Hornacko folklore but came back with much more:

"My name is Eva Dvorakova, I'm 26 and I came to Moravia because of this festival. I know nothing about Moravian culture so this is just a good opportunity to explore it. It's just one small part of Moravia but the customs here are pretty unique. Also what is very special is the way people behave here, I mean especially what they eat and how much they drink - anyone who likes slivovice or anything that is similar to that should come here and taste it. It's just marvellous and you can get here the best slivovice within the whole Czech Republic. I can strongly recommend it."