Diversity Week in Iasi – interethnic festival

For 8 days, Steptember 18th till September 25th, 2015, took place the interethnic festival “Diversity Week in Iasi”. Each community involved in the festival, including the Roma, held a stand that represented their cultural values .

Friday, September 18th

In the stands, in addition to traditional costumes, Roma have exposed floral printed scarves, two stills for making brandy, copper pans, International Roma flag, books and photos from the everyday life of Roma issues. In the media tent were exposed 22 paintings made during the project, two of them, made by the painter Manuel Manastireanu, with the theme of Roma man and another two were made by Roma painter Alexandru Stoica.

In the afternoon, took place the premiere of the outdoor theater show  Fereastra, which advocates inter-culturally and non-discrimination of Roma people. Suffering, pain or joy of the Roma man are identical to other people, differences of perception between people being given only by preconceptions, partly erroneous. The show was played during the festival in the main neighborhoods of Iasi – Tatarasi, Alexandru cel Bun, Pacurari and Nicolina.

The day ended with the “Parade of traditional clothing”, more than 100 people – including 10 Roma people, dressed in traditional costumes, marched through the center of Iasi. Participants waved flags, while the loudspeaker sung national anthems of Ukraine, Armenia, Greece, Russia, Israel and “Gelem Gelem” International Roma anthem. Finally, participants released balloons filled with helium and lanterns.

Tuesday, September 22th

On the festival day dedicated to Roma people, the Roma community in Iasi, represented by the Asociation “Pro Rome” presented their values. In the media room, arranged in one of the two tents installed in front of the Palace of Culture, the Roma community has broadcast continuously authentic Gypsy music, including “Roma anthem” International Roma anthem and projected documentary films.

The same day, the Alexandru Ioan Cuza University Museum held a photo exhibition history of minorities. 12 posters were presented with information and unique historical photographs, 4 of them being with documentary images that show the Roma craft activities.

Wednesday, September 23th  

The Ethnic Poetry Day, suggestively entitled “Yesterday, recently” enjoyed a wide audience among Iasi and minority communities in Iasi. Nearly 100 spectators wanted to hear the immortal verses, recited in Romanian and / or maternal languages, of Eminescu, Kafis, Nicolae Paun, Comitas or Yesenin. The salt and pepper of the day were the two representatives of the Roma, members of the Association “Pro Roma”, who held a dialogue from the book” The Willows “written by Paul Constantin and Nicolae Paun.

Thursday, September 24th

“The workshop of culinary traditions and innovations” was held in the Great Hall of The Leisure Ciric Complex from Iasi. Dishes were prepared according to traditional recipes of the minorities participating in the festival, every community, including Roma, with one table allocated for the restaurant meals, the Swedish buffet type. Skewers with Gypsy moss and a Gypsy cake recipe made out of 17 eggs were chosen by the Roma community. On this occasion the cookbook “Gastronomy minority Affinities” has been launched, printed in 100 copies, containing traditional recipes, one chapter of the book (over 20 pages) is devoted to the Roma cuisine.

Friday, September 25th

On the last day of the festival the Roma community went on stage, followed by the Hebrew and Greek communities. The band “Pro Rome”, representative for the Roma community, consisting of ten persons, approached for an hour authentic fiddler music, Romanian music and a medley of instrumental music, violin, accordion, trumpet, dulcimer and the incomparable Gypsy traditional public port completed the iconic part of the Roma culture.


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