Ida Kelarová and the choir Čhavorenge will come to Pohoda in a unique fusion with the Czech Philharmonic. Čhavorenge means "to children" in translation and it’s the development of talented Roma children from Czech and Slovak settlements that this project is focused on. “Roma children lack the feeling that they are welcome in society. We strive to create an environment that motivates them not to give up their dreams and goals, and to follow their life story fulfilment," says the project's founder, Ida Kelarová. Members of the Chalani z chatrče from the Budulovská settlement in Moldava nad Bodvou also became part of Čhavorenge some time ago. The headmaster of the Moldava primary school, Andrea Papp, was so impressed by the project that she set up something similar at her school – the Savorenge choir, which has already played a joint concert with the pupils of the local art school. Savorenge will symbolically join Čhavorenge during the concert.
Čhavorenge is part of the MIRET civic association, which focuses on helping talented Roma children and youth. Its repertoire is based on songs written by Desiderius Dužda, a Roma composer, guitarist, singer and pedagogue (and Ida Kelarová’s husband) who accompanies the choir at concerts along with professional artists. The main mission of the project is to give children from complicated environments a chance, to put them on the map, to enable them to experience new valuable experiences, to motivate them and to inspire them to do new things, and at the same time to teach them to present Roma culture on a professional level. Ida Kelarová's effort to change the world through music is also described in the fantastic documentary "O čo ide Ide” (translated as What’s Ida’s point) in which Ida says: "When I had visited in the settlement for the first time, I didn’t sleep for a month. Every night I saw the eyes of those children trying to survive there, being sentenced to life in the settlement. I'm used to it, I go there for 20 years, but it always gets to me somehow... ”.
Her efforts are not, however, always accepted with enthusiasm. When she and the kids were at the Romano Drom (Roma journey) in the Czech town of Jiřetín pod Jedlovou, a man living in the neighbourhood of the camp started calling them names. The swearing was accompanied by shots and later he also verbally attacked Kelarová's husband. The complaint with the police was first rejected with the words: "don't make a war out of it". After several summer stays of Romano Drom in Eastern Slovakia and Czechia, Čhavorenge started recording a CD in Rudolfínum a year ago together with the Czech Philharmonic. The album Hey Romale was released in April 2018 and immediately became an extremely popular record. Earlier this year, the two ensembles opened the British Orchestra Association in Belfast with a joint concert. A year after the release of Hej Romale, the Czech Television broadcasted a live joint concert of Čhavorenge, the Czech Philharmonic and many guests from the Rudolfínum in Prague. "It is a great honour and a remarkable challenge for us," says David Mareček, CEO of the Czech Philharmonic, and adds: "It’s amazing that they can experience a sense of fulfilment, the joy of finding themselves, something that may be a milestone for their future lives. We believe that together we help to create fewer prejudices, barriers and misunderstandings among people, and rather create more understanding, mutual inspiration and beautiful music. The Czech Philharmonic together with the ensemble of talented Roma children under the leadership Ida Kelarová will perform at Pohoda 2019 as well.