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February 29, 2000


LA CROSSE, Wis.—Based on the exciting music, songs, and dances of Eastern Europe, the Tamburitzans, the longest-running live stage show in the U.S., will perform on the Viterbo stage Saturday, March 25, at 7:30 p.m.

Employing the pan-pipes from Romania, the balalaikas from Russia, the Greek bouzoukee, and many other unique instruments, the Tamburitzans will perform more than 500 variations of folk traditions that will astound young and old alike. The program is accented with traditional, authentic costumes.

The ensemble takes its name from the tamburitza family of stringed folk instruments that are predominant in the music of Eastern Europe. The philharmonic sound of the tamburitza orchestra is a feature unique to these talented performers and language is no barrier, as the emotions portrayed strike a universal chord: Joy at a wedding, sorrow over lost love, and pride in a plentiful harvest.

Bringing a fresh look to the annual production is accomplished in part because these performers are not ordinary artists; they’re full-time university students earning undergraduate degrees with the aid of performance scholarships.

These 36 collegians are artists in every sense of the word, having achieved high levels of skill in their respective crafts through years of special training. Chosen on the basis of outstanding talent as well as academic achievement, each student receives substantial financial aid to use at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Penn. towards a degree in any academic field of study.

The ensemble was founded in 1937 at Duquesne where it was first called the "Slavic Tamburitza Orchestra."  Now, 60 years and hundreds of Tamburitzans later,  company members come from all corners of the U.S., Canada, and Eastern Europe. The Duquesne University Tamburitzans travel throughout the continental U.S., presenting up to 80 concerts each season in large cities and small towns alike.

This event is sponsored by WIZM and supported, in part, by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin.

Tickets are $18. For more information, or to order tickets, call the Viterbo Box Office at (608) 796-3100.

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