Released 16 May 1999

  1. Call From The South - Povik Ot Iug
  2. To My First Love - Na Pƅrvo Libe
  3. A Curse On You Strange Places - Pusta Chuzhbina / Harvest - Zhetva
  4. All Summer (Part One) - Tsyalo Lyato (Pƅrvi Pƅt)
  5. Hey Harvesters (Part Two) - Ei Zhetvarki (Vtori Pƅt)
  6. A Shepherd Plays - Ovchar Sviri
  7. He Plays (Part Three) - Sviri Toi (Treti Pƅt)
  8. Travelling Light - Pƅtuvame Leko
  9. Autumn - Essen / Grape Picking - Grozdober
  10. On The Grapevines (Part One) - Po Lozyata (Pƅrvi Pƅt)
  11. Sorrow Suppressed (Part Two) - Zhal Spotaivat (Vtori Pƅt)
  12. Eyes Like Berries - Ochi Kato Zƅrna
  13. Tomorrow (Part Three) - A Utre (Treti Pƅt)

Liner notes

Sydney based choir Martenitsa was formed by Mara Kiek in late 1990 with the assistance of the Australia Council’s Performing Arts Board. Modelled on the magnificent Bulgarian state choirs, Martenitsa has become one of the most highly regarded and innovative choirs in Australia.

In 1988 Mara travelled to Bulgaria for six months to study folk music, choral music and conducting (Plovdiv Higher Institute of Music). On her return, she recruited about 40 singers around the core group Mesana Salata, of which she was a founding member in May 1983.

One of Martenitsa’s first concerts was at WOMADelaide in 1992. The choir has since performed in many major concert halls in eastern Australia and has toured with the legendary Trio Bulgarka and Balkana.

In 1993 the ground-breaking work ‘Sezoni’ was written by Bulgarian Stefan Kozuharov and members of the Mara! band. Performed, broadcast and recorded by Martenitsa and Mara!, ‘Sezoni’ was first released on Rufus Records through Polygram and was a final nominee for the ARIA award’s Best World/Folk/Traditional CD release of 1997.

Guest soloist Silvia Entcheva, formerly with Bulgaria’s most famous choir, Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares, began performing with Martenitsa in 1994. Silvia appears on the ‘Sezoni’ recording.


Further Listening

  • Tande-La

    The Creole Choir of Cuba

    Released 02 October 2010

    Irresistible melodies driven by richly textured harmonies, shifting Caribbean rhythms with a very original root bass sound, this is impassioned singing by a unique group celebrating roots, resistance and the irresistible rhythms of life. In the words of the glorious opening track 'Edem Chanté' - Help Us Sing!
  • Table Songs of Georgia

    Tsinandali Choir

    Released 25 January 1993

    An album of spine-tingling a cappella harmony from one of Europe’s most ancient singing traditions. While table songs are still in their original context, they have also become part of a widely known and widely sung performance repertory common to scores of amateur and professional choirs in Georgia. The Tsinandali Ensemble is one such choir.

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