Authentic folk arts in Leuven
“Paasfeesten Leuven” is a folklore festival that is being organised annually since 1975 in collaboration with the city of Leuven. The festival invites on average four foreign groups every year. These groups show their best performances on the stage in the multi-purpose sports and dancing hall “De Rijschool” in the Rijschoolstraat.
Together with the dancing and flag-waving groups from Leuven, Carpevento, ‘t Havermeuleke, Reuzegom and Rozemarijntje, they put up a good show and contribute to an Easter weekend filled with culture, fun and performances. Starting from Thursday when the foreign groups arrive, until Tuesday morning when the last of them leave, there are five days to get to know each other, to enjoy performances, workshops and more.
The organisation of the festival is for the most part in the hands of the members of the local folk art groups. From the assembly and decoration of the hall to the dismantling at the end, preparing meals or arranging places for the groups to sleep, planning of the programme, promotion and searching for financing, everything is being taken care of by volunteers.
Of course this is only one side of the festival, it is much more than performances, workshops and the organising alone. During the festival it is all about fraternisation, host families, hosts and members of the Leuven groups alike, everyone gets to know each other during this fun-filled weekend. You talk to each other in languages you might not even understand properly, but even if there are some minor communication problems, friends are being made for life during this festival. That is what the Paasfeesten is about: real friendship between people.