SIEPAKAT - FOLK DANCE FROM THE ARCTIC CIRCLE
Siepakat is a folk dance and music ensemble from Rovaniemi Finland. Siepakat was founded in 1977 and is celebrating its 40-year anniversary in 2017. Currently Siepakat consists of 12 dance and 5 music groups. Altogether there are about 200 dancers and musicians whose ages range from three-year-olds to seniors. Siepakat ensemble employs executive director, two dance teachers and
two music teachers.
The main objective of Siepakat is to transfer the folkloristic traditions to younger generations. Other core values are tolerance, consideration of others and internationality. In addition to national performances, the groups perform abroad on a yearly basis. Siepakat has travelled around the world, mainly in Europe but also to places like Australia, Malaysia, USA, Canada, Thailand, Mexico and South Korea.
The representative group of Siepakat
The representative dance group is called Siepakat and it consists of young dancers in their late teens and early twenties. At the moment there are 10 dancers in the group: 5 boys and 5 girls. On a regular basis, the group practices three times a week. In addition the group practices approximately one weekend a month. Most of the dancers in the group started their hobby before school age, so the group has been together for over 15 years. For many of them, this is why folk dance is so much more than just a hobby.
Siepakat Jr is talented dance group which consists of 14 dancers, in their teens. They are determined to improve their dance skills. The group practice traditional Finnish folk dances from different parts of Finland. To support their folk dance the group also practices other dance techniques such as modern dance. On a regular basis, the group practices two times a week. In addition the group practices irregularly on the weekends.
Groups for school aged children
Children dance groups practice folk dance 1-2 times a week depending on the age. Siepakat has four dance groups for ages between 7-14. These groups participate yearly to children folk dance festivals in Finland or Europe.
Groups for children under school aged
Children under school age are taught the very basics of folk dance through playing and singing. The other focus is to teach the children how to work in a group and take others into account.
Elokset is youthful adult dance group which consists of 16 dancers. They practice Finnish folk dance from different parts of Finland once a week. Many of the dancers have danced in Siepakat when they were younger. Having returned to Rovaniemi after their studies, they have rediscovered their old hobby. As most of the group in Siepakat, Elokset participate yearly to folk dance festivals in Finland and abroad.
Fossiilit is the senior dance group of Siepakat. The group consist of 22 adult dancers who want to dance but not take it too seriously. The group’s goal is to learn basics of folk dance and folklore. Fossiilit participate yearly to folklore festivals in Finland and abroad.
Siepakat band accompanies the dancers in their performances, but the band does also perform on its own. The band plays an impressive scale of instruments, including violin, guitar, accordion, clarinet and bass. The repertoire of the band is diverse, ranging from traditional folk music to Lappish joiku singing and modern folk music.
The repertoire of the dance group includes traditional Finnish folk dances, modern choreographies and Lappish fantasy dances. Siepakat uses national costumes and other traditional costumes. The group usually performs accompanied by the Siepakat Band.
Siepakat offers a wide range of performances in different sized groups. Performances can be tailor made according to the wishes of the customer. In addition, Siepakat can be ordered to perform for different events such as festivals, conferences and festive occasions.
For more information about different groups and their performances, please contact the Siepakat office by e-mail:
siepakat (at) pp.inet.fi