International Roma Day 2021 Celebrates 50th Anniversary of First Roma Congress
The annual celebrations of International Roma Day, April 8th, will take place online this year due to the anti-epidemic measures, from April 7th-9th. 50 years after the first Roma Congress, cultural events will be organized virtually, including a televised concert by the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. Photo Credit: Freepik / Illustrative Photo.
Czech Rep., Apr 8 (BD) – The annual celebrations of International Roma Day, April 8th, will take place online this year due to the anti-epidemic measures, from April 7th-9th. 50 years after the first international gathering of Roma, concerts, discussions, and lectures will be organized virtually. The Czech Philharmonic Orchestra with Ida Kelarová will organize a gala concert of jazz, classical, and Romani music to mark the occasion, broadcast live on Czech Television on Thursday, April 8th, at 8.15pm. This year is also the 30th year since the opening of Brno’s Museum of Romani Culture. The Roma community currently accounts for around 2.4% of the population of the Czech Republic.
The celebrations marking International Roma Day, coordinated by Ara Art, include three evenings of concerts, a Romani literature discussion, a cooking show, and other activities to appreciate Romani culture. The three-day event will end on Friday with a concert by the Pefek Band. According to David Tišer, director of Ara Art, the number of performers and members of the organizing team had to be reduced due to the strict anti-epidemic measures. At the same time, the Brno Museum of Romani Culture is hosting an online program to contribute to the celebrations, including a podcast covering major historical events in Romani History. The Savore Džene community center in Brno has also been participating in the event with special recordings and online performances.
International Roma Day has been observed since 1990. The date commemorates the first Roma Congress, an international meeting of representatives of the Roma community, which took place on April 8th, 1971, near London in the United Kingdom, and laid the foundations of the International Roma Union. Representatives from 14 countries, including the former Czechoslovakia, adopted the Roma anthem, flag, and the official name, Roma. Famous figures who have participated in previous International Roma Day celebrations include Pope John Paul II, the Dalai Lama, and Vaclav Havel.