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Slovak poet Andrej Sladkovic in his poetic collection Marina is giving reverence to a young girl confessing his love for her. Marina is becoming a symbol of youth, beauty, and love.
Thirty years ago in Zvolen young folklore enthusiasts formed a folk dance and folk singing group Marina. Marína was formed by amalgamation of two former groups Hron and Rozlet. On December 11, 1967 they had their first performance in the theater of J.G. Tajovsky in Zvolen. Soon they were performing at folklore festivals in: Vychodna, Straznice, Detva, Helpa, Myjava and others. From 1979 they are being sponsored by the Railroads of the Slovak Republic. Former member Jan Jamriska after finishing his studies in Bratislava in becoming their choreographer in 1981. Since then he has created all evening folklore program of different modes from lyric moments to temperament dances. After creating the Under Polana numbers that form the major part of the program, he also created a Goral part from upper Orava, moments from Wedding in Hont region, another part with the Easter theme from Lower Liptov. Juraj Dubovec did musical arrangements. 

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Their repertoire also includes songs and dances from Eastern Slovakia's region Zemplin. Marina is performing constantly and sharing its happiness with spectators in Slovakia and other countries such as: Holland, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Hungary, former Yugoslavia, France, Great Britain, Finland, Norway, Spain and Switzerland.
The most important fact is that Marina is a group of young people, students, and workers from many professions that love for folk art, respect for old traditions, folk songs, folk dresses binds together. Many important folklore personalities have grown up in Marina: Vladimir Kysel, Stefan Zima, Eva Matejkova, Igor Danihel, Robert Puskar and many others. In December of last year they celebrated their 30 anniversary together with their former members, friends and well wishes.
Gratitude belongs to all that were involved in Marina's creation, former and present members. Also to all, that accepted her with love.

Thank you Marina for everything you had given us and we wish that you would stay symbol of youth, beauty, and love.

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Published in the Slovak Heritage Live newsletter Volume 5, No.1, Spring 1997
Copyright © Vladimir Linder 1997 
3804 Yale Street, Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada V5C 1P6
The above article and photographs may not be copied, reproduced, republished, or redistributed by any means including electronic, without the express written permission of Vladimir Linder. All rights reserved.