Song and Emergent Poetics: Oral Traditions in Performance

Hotel Kalevala, Kuhmo 21st - 24th November 2013

Welcome to Song and Emergent Poetics: Oral Traditions in Performance, an international multidisciplinary conference in Kuhmo, Hotel Kalevala! The Conference will begin on Thursday morning, November 21st at 9:00 AM. All participants are asked to register for the Conference at Hotel Kalevala. Registration will open at 8:30 on the morning of the conference.

Languages of the conference are Finnish, Russian and English. Speakers may use any of these languages. Simultaneous translation into the other two working languages will be provided.   Each presentation will be allowed 20 minutes followed by an additional 10 minutes for discussion.

The conference does not charge a participation fee. Participants must cover costs of their own meals, travel- and accommodation expenses.

The conference is organized by the Runosong Academy in cooperation with the University of Tampere ('Song and singing as cultural communication', Finnish Academy project), the Sibelius Academy (Folk music Department) and University of Helsinki ('Oral Poetry, Mythic Knowledge and Vernacular Imagination', Finnish Academy project).

Further information is available on our website or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ,  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Download this file (SEP_FINAL.pdf)Seminar Abstracts

 Thursday November 21st Hotel Kalevala

8:30–9:00 Coffee

9:00–9:15 Opening words: Pekka Huttu-Hiltunen (Runosong Academy)

9:15–10:15 Keynote lecture: Karl Reichl (University of Bonn) “Sing, o Muse!”: Reflections on the Singing of Oral Epics

10:15–10:30 Coffee

10:30–12:30 Session I: Epic and Ritual Songs

Hamish Williams (University of Cape Town)Rediscovering the Creative Bard (‘aoidos’): Some Observations into the Artistic Impact of Images, Eikones, upon the Narrative of Homer’s Odyssey IX–XII

Le Hong Ly (The Centre for the Cultures of Vietnam) Xoan-laulu Hung-kuninkaiden juhlan osana

Т.Г. Басангова (Калмыцкий институт гуманитарных исследований РАН)Калмыцкие обрядовые песни

Gillebrìde MacMillan (The University of Glasgow/Ceòlas Uibhist)Dìleab phrìseil - Song and folklore collections in Eriskay, Scotland and the contested legacy of Fr Allan MacDonald and Ada Goodrich Freer.

12:30–13:30 Lunch

13:30–14:30 Keynote lecture Jarkko Niemi (University of Tampere)

Strategies of description of a poetic form in a sung oral tradition as a tool for regional and stylistic comparison of poetic styles:

14:30–15:00 Coffee

15:00–17:00 Session II: Metrics and Poetics

Karina Lukin (University of Helsinki): The ‘Word’ Missing? – Cueing the Absenceof Performance in Nenets Epic

Frog (University of Helsinki): Creating Poetic Structure in Performance

Kati Kallio (University of Helsinki, Finnish Literature Society): Poetics and Meanings of a Song Meter

Marko Jouste (Giellagas Instit., University of Oulu): Review on music collection of Sámi

13:30-17:00 Workshop on question of song and language (EOST): Chair Pekka Huttu-Hiltunen

Short presentations on the theme:

Birger Winsa (Vesterbåtten, Sweden),

Naomi Harvey, Gillebride MacMillan, Jo MacDonald (Scotland, UK),

Brigitte Kloareg, Pierre-Yves Pétillon, Katel Shorland Kloareg (Brittany, France),

Taive Särg (Tartumaa, Estonia),

pedagogues and cultural workers from different parts of Karelian Republic, Russia.


17.00 Dinner

18:15 Departure from Hotel Kalevala to Juminkeko Center

18:30 Reception and film at Juminkeko Transportation to Hotel Kalevala appr. 9.30 pm.


Friday 22.11.2013 Hotel Kalevala

8:30–9:00 Coffee

9:00–10:00 Keynote lecture Astrid Nora Ressem (The Norwegian Folk- and Popular Song Archives)«And he was amused by his own performance». Early records of Norwegian Medieval Ballads – a structural analysis

10:15–10:30 Coffee

10:30–12:30 Session III: Song and Book Culture

Борлыкова Босха Халгаевна (Калмыцкий институт гуманитарных исследований РАН)Вклад А. Д. Руднева и Г. Й. Рамстедта в историю собирания и изучения калмыцкого музыкального фольклора

Thomas A. McKean (Elphinstone Institute, University of Aberdeen)Integrating Textures of Life and Song

Michael Lukin (The Hebrew University, Jerusalem)Yiddish parodia sacra folksongs: text and music, esthetics and form

Birger Winsa (Docent on meänkieli, University of Oulu)Song and music as instruments for cultural development

12:30–13:30 Lunch

13:30-14:30 Keynote lecture To Ngoc Thanh (The Vietnam Folklore Society) The Epic Tradition of the Bakhnar

14.30-14.45 Coffee

14:45–16:15 Session IV: Improvization

Тамара Всеволодовна Краснопольская (Петрозаводская государственная консерватория (академии) им. А. К. Глазунова)Песня: звучание, смыслы, формы существования в изменяющемся мире

Venla Sykäri (University of Helsinki) The notion of improvisation as conceptualized by singers of oral poetry

Галина Карпова (Петрозаводский государственный университет)Импровизационность и вариативность в песнях саамов Кольского полуострова

16.15-16.30 Coffee

16:30–18:30 Session V: Laments

Tuomas Tammisto (University of Helsinki)The Tandaning: Lament Songs of the Mengen of Papua New Guinea

Вера Швецова (Петрозаводская государственная консерватория (академии) им. А. К. Глазунова)О свадебных причитаниях Федосьи Никоновой (вопросы функции, семантики и структуры)

Eila Stepanova (University of Helsinki)Seesjärven itkujen äänimaisema

Emmi Kuittinen (Sibelius Academy)All the peoples` sorrow - Laments as a material for a musician

18:30 Dinner

19:30–21:30 Concert at Hotel KalevalaTransportation to Uljaska and Park


Saturday 23.11.2013 Hotel Kalevala

8:30–9:00 Coffee

9:00–10:00 Keynote lecture: Margaret Callan (University of Edinburgh)Performance in Context: “The text, of course, is extremely important, but without the context it remains lifeless…”

10:00–10:15 Coffee

10:15–12:15 Session VI: Gender in Song

Nadezhda Rychkova (Russian State University for Humanities, Moscow)“Everyone Knows Love Well, It Can Be Changeable”: The Relationship between Man and Woman in Non-Ritual Folk Lyrics

Róisín Ní Gallóglaigh (University of Limerick)Gender Representations in Irish Language Erotic Occupational Song

Martha Lawry (Khazar University, Baku)Courtship and Marriage Traditions Revealed in Azerbaijani Folk Songs

Maria Kundozerova (Институт языка, литературы и истории Карельского научного центра РАН)Руна о большом дубе: к вопросу о межжанровых взаимодействиях

12:15–13:15 Lunch

13:15–14:15 Keynote lecture: Taive Särg (Estonian Literary Museum)The impact of prosody of the Estonian language to regilaul melody variations

14:15–14:30 Coffee

14:30–16:30 Session VII: Modern Adaptations of Traditions:

Sandra Joyce (Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick)Finding Your Own Voice: The Transmission of Irish Traditional Song at Third Level

Heidi Haapoja (University of Helsinki)The Creative Modern Artist and the Voice of the Past - About the role of a Singer in the Contemporary Finnish Kalevalaic Rune Singing Field

Юлия Львовна Колесникова (Национальный исследовательский Мордовский государсвенный университет им. Н. П. Огарева) Вторичные исполнительские формы традиционной мордовской музыки

Ковыршина Юлия (Петрозаводская государственная консерватория (академии) им. А. К. Глазунова)Беломорские эпические песни: механизмы адаптации традиционных музыкально-стилевых моделей

17.00 Dinner

18:30 Departure from Hotel Kalevala to Kuhmo Arts Centre

19:00 Concert at Kuhmo Arts CentreTransportation to Hotel Kalevala appr. 9:00 pm.


Sunday 24.11.2013 Hotel Kalevala

8:30–9:00 Coffee

9:00–10:00 Keynote lecture: Lotte Tarkka (University of Helsinki)The Poetics of Quotation – Proverbial Speech, Entextualization and the Emergence of Oral Poems

10:00–10:15 Coffee

10:15–11:55 Session VIII: Networks of Meanings and Interrelations

Миронова Валентина Петровна (Институт языка, литературы и истории Карельского научного центра РАН)Русские лирические песни в контексте карельской песенной традиции

Éamonn Costello (Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick)Cath na Ceathrún Rua (The Battle of Carraroe): A Hidden History Preserved in Song

11:15–11:30 Closing Discussion

11:30–13:00 Lunch

There is a restaurant with a buffet at the site of the event. We have negotiated a special participant rate for lunches (11,50 euros/person) and dinners (16 euros/person) at this location and we are seeking additional funds to help defray meal costs. If you are considering eating at this buffet and have a special diet or any other wishes about the meals, please let us know as soon as possible at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . (If we are not informed about dietary needs before the end of October, we cannot guarantee that your needs will be accommodated.)

Kuhmo can be reached directly by car, or via Kajaani by train ( or plane ( From Kajaani there is bus connection ( at the time of train arrival from the railway station.  An Airport Taxi can be taken from the Kajaani airport (order at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ).

From Helsinki, and possibly also from Petrozavodsk, there is a direct bus connection to the Conference on Wednesday at about 14-22 and return on Sunday 24.11. at about 14-22. Those wishing to come by bus are kindly asked to enlist themselves in advance to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . The bus is charged according to the net cost, about 120-140 euros per person round trip.

You can make your reservation directly to the hotel or hostel.  Please inform them that your room should be at the special rate for the Song and Emergent Poetics Conference. The hotel and hostel alternatives in Kuhmo are:


Hotel Kalevala

Väinämöinen 9, 88900 Kuhmo, tel. +358 8 655 4100info@hotellikalevala.fiDistance from venue: Hotel Kalevala is the conference venue.

Room Price/night
1-HH 75 €
2-HH yhdelle 91 €
2-HH kahdelle 97 €
Superior-huone 123 €
Sviitti kahdelle 175 €

The price includes evening sauna, use of wellness department (Jacuzzi, acu massage, relaxation corner) and plentiful breakfast.

Hotel Kainuu

Kainuuntie 84, 88900 Kuhmo, tel. +358 8 655 1711info@hotellikainuu.comDistance from venue: 3 km (transport in the morning and evening is available)


Room Price/night/person Price all together
 1-HH  58 €  58 €
 2-HH  35 €  70 €
 Lisävuode  22 €  22 €
 2-HH, superior  39 €  78 €

Price includes breakfast and evening sauna.

Matkakoti Parkki

Vienantie 3, 88900 Kuhmo, tel. +358 8 6550 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. äisyys: 3 km (kuljetus aamulla ja illalla mahdollinen)

Room Price/night
1-HH 35 €
2-HH 60 €
Lisävuode 20 €

Price includes breakfast.

Matkakoti Uljaska

Koulukatu 38, 88900 Kuhmo, tel. +358 400 336310Distance: 2 km (transport in the morning and evening is available)

Room Price/night
1-HH 40 €
2-HH 60 €
Yksiö (2 - 3 hlö) 70 €
Kaksio (4 hlö) 90 €

Price includes breakfast.

If you would like additional advice on accommodation, please contact the Conference Office, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .