We Mancs pride ourselves on the diversity of our city; we are a community, regardless of race, religion, or sexuality. From the flavours of China Town, to the cosy streets of Little Italy, Manchester takes inspiration from all around the world.
And there is another culture edging its way into our hearts, as we see the triumphant return of the much-loved Góbéfest this June.
Taking centre stage in their new location of Cathedral Gardens, Góbéfest celebrates the music, dance, culture, food and drink of Transylvania. Currently the UK’s only free weekend-long Transylvanian festival, Góbéfest will be celebrating four years this year, and promise even better festivities than last year.
Góbéfest began in 2017, inspired by the little-known culture and traditions of the Székler people, a minority group of ethnic Hungarians living in Transylvania. Their culture is much inspired by music and folklore, with their home, Székelyland, known to have inspired famous classical music masterpieces, including works from Beethoven, Brahms and Strauss.
However, Góbéfest in Manchester provides a contemporary take on the culture, with musical acts paying tribute to every genre from across the Carpathian Basin region of Eastern and Central Europe. And, with a community notorious for their super-strong fruit brandy Palinka, everyone will be positively jolly this June.
However it’s very important that we line our stomachs, so why not tuck into some traditional Transylvanian snacks, including spicy Romanian sausages and goulash.
New for this year is the family activity tent, providing arts and music workshops for mums and dads, as well as an enchanting puppet show for the little ones. Other activities include a makers’ craft market, craft food sampling and a whopping 57 varieties of live Transylvanian music throughout the weekend, including its very own zither orchestra.
And for those daring enough, Góbéfest will be hosting some folk dance demonstrations to teach you how to stomp your feet the ‘Székely’ way.
The festivities begin on Friday 26th June, and run on until late Sunday evening, so you have plenty of time to get your dance on. And the best part: its completely free!