Coming up May 29th in the Laishev region of Tatarstan, the Russian Folklore Karavon Fest is a bright and colorful celebration held annually in the Russian Nikolskoye settlement. People from around the world travel to this hidden gem of a destination to take part in festivities outside Kazan.
“Karavon”, is the Old Russian word for khorovod (circle dance). In ancient times, people danced with faces uplifted to the sun with pinky fingers interlaced. The dance is performed in a sort of undulating ritual where diminishing or enlarging the circle is accomplished to the tunes of; Kak Po Moryu Sinemy (Along the Blue Sea), Pri Dolu-dolochke (At the Valley, Little Dale) and Kak Po Rechke (Along the River).
The tradition of “Karavon”, which is timed to coincide with Saint Nicholas the Miracle-Worker Day, goes back some 300 years. Traditionally the festival begins with a church service and continues at festival spreads, inside homes and out in the streets where partakers take part in the dance. Another interesting facet of “Karavon” is a special event held where young girls and ladies wear festive clothes, such as summer dresses, satin kerchiefs and bright ribbons.
For more information about this year’s event, reader can go to the official Visit Tatarstan website.