Tallinn, 22 July 2005Tallinn, 07 July 2005
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Ensemble Shokshanka performs in Estonia at the Day of Erzya Language


Estonian-Mordovian Culture Society and Fenno-Ugria Society invited to Estonia folklore ensemble Shokshanka from the Tengushevo district of the Republic of Mordovia (Russian Federation) to celebrate the Day of Erzya Language.
Arrival of Shokshanka is a remarkable event for Estonian cultural life. This ensemble is interesting, because its members, pupils and teachers, represent a separate ethno-linguistic group, which lives in two villages of the Republic of Mordovia.
It will be recalled that besides Erzya and Moksha two bigger language groups of the Mordva people, there are three smaller ethno-linguistic groups distinguished: Karatay, Teryukhan and Shoksha. If Karatays, Teryukhans are assimilated amongst Tatars, than Shokshas continue to live and speak their language.
Shokshanka will perform tomorrow, 19th April, in the Tallinn Music House at the Erzya Evening, where members of Kannelkond and Tantsuklubi will participate also. Another Erzya Evening will take place on 21st April in Tartu Writers' House, where in addition to Shokshanka Finnish group Kärhämä will perform, ethnographic movies will be shown and national food served.
Shokshanka will give concerts in several Tallinn and Tartu schools and in Tallinn University.
Guests of the Day of Erzya Language are invited by the Finno-Ugric Support Group of the Estonian Parliament Riigikogu to the reception in the building of the parliament.
The Estonian-Mordovian Culture Society will present the third issue of journal "Kudo" at public events. There are about ten articles in this issue in Estonian, Erzya and Moksha that consider first of all international Finno-Ugric contacts.
Valentina Mishanina, head of the Drama Department of Mordovian State National Drama Theatre is also invited to the Day of Erzya Language. She will give course of lectures on the issues of contemporary Mordovian literature at Tartu University.
The Day of Erzya Language is celebrated from April, 16th 1993 on initiative of the Foundation for Survival of Erzya Language. This date was chosen because of the birthday of Erzya linguist Anatoly Ryabov (b. 1894). Idea of this day is to draw attention to the situation with Erzya language, to popularise Erzya language. According to figures of the last All-Russian population censes, Erzya language disappears more quickly than other Finno-Ugric languages in Russia.
The Day of Erzya Language is celebrated for the ninth time in Estonia.