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International Folklore Festival of Lefkada

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The “International Folklore Festival” of Lefkada started in 1962 as “International Festival of Folk Dances and Songs in Lefkada”, as an event of the Literature and Art Festivities that had already been organised in Lefkada since 1955. Three countries participated, namely Yugoslavia, Italy and Greece.

Antonis Tzevelekis was the inspirer and creator of the festival. He, as the president of the Associations of Lefkadians in Athens, with the help of the Society of Lefkadian Studies, of the Dance and Literature Club “Orfeas” and other agents of the island, fulfilled his dream to make Lefkada a centre for Literature, Art and Culture.

The festival’s target, up to this day, is to promote peace, friendship and solidarity among the peoples of the world, through the folklore arts of dance and music, and also the traditions and the folk ways of expression and communication. Through the language of imagination and creativity, the peoples of the world meet every August in Lefkada to exchange the products of their cultural and artistic expression, in the way they were evolved through the age-old traditions. Through the different forms of expression, new ways of substantial communication and collaboration are being formed, with absolute respect to the right to difference, beyond cultural, social, economical, religious and other legacies.

The International Folklore Festival of Lefkada is the oldest cultural institution in Greece in the fields of dance and music, of world cultural heritage, with national and international recognition.

The Festival usually takes place within the second fortnight of August (from Sunday to Sunday) beginning with the great parade of peace and friendship, the evening opening ceremony (on the first Sunday) with all the groups performing for a few minutes, continuing with the shows of the dance groups within the week and ending with a grandiose closing ceremony, the gifts trade and the final dance of peace by all groups on the second Sunday.

Hundreds of groups from our island, Greece and all over the world have taken part in the International Folklore Festival of Lefkada.

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