Slovenians to unite in singing on St George's Day

Ljubljana, 23 April - Slovenians will again join forces despite staying at home because of the coronavirus epidemic. This time they will unite in singing Slovenian songs on St George's Day.

Photo: Daniel Novakovič/STA

The campaign is being organised by a team promoting Slovenian folk singing, which has organised such events twice already, on St George's Day in 2018 and 2019.

Previously, people were urged to get together with friends to sign Slovenian songs, but this year everyone will be singing from home.

Slovenians are urged to join the campaign at 10am today by first signing the Slovenian anthem and the song Lipa Zelenela Je, as well as any other Slovenian songs they like. Song lyrics can be found on the group's website, where people can also fill out a form saying they will be taking part.

"This time we are singing from home. We are singing in a car, from a hospital bed, during a walk, at work or wherever we are at that given moment. Sing in your heart or out loud, whatever the circumstances allow you," the organisers say.

The initiative aims to promote national identity, cooperation and the sense of community, as well as raise awareness about the importance of Slovenian language, culture and identity among the young.

Slovenians living outside the country are also invited to take part.

The first such project was carried out on 4 June 2018. Last year, President Borut Pahor was the honorary sponsor of the event, while this year the previous prime minister, Marjan Šarec, pledged to be the honorary sponsor.

St George is known as the herald of spring, happiness, abundance and new beginnings. Legend has it he carried a tree branch to each house on 23 April for good luck, and the tradition is still preserved today in some parts; in the south-eastern region of Bela Krajina, a boy dressed up as Green George and accompanied by singers, brings a tree branch to each house for good luck.

© STA, 2020