Albert Square host the return of Góbéfest (pronounced Go-bee-fest), the annual festival that aims to show there’s more to Transylvania than Dracula films would have you believe. The three-day festival boasts a packed programme of events, including traditional music and dance as well as contemporary musicians and artists from the Carpathian Basin. All of these can be found on the festival’s main stage in the Square, where you can catch the likes of the Harghita National Szekler Folk Ensemble and the Titita Hungarian Folk Dance Group performing from midday until late in the evening. Even local orchestra Manchester Camerata is getting in on the action, performing a setlist of compositions from 20th Century Hungarian-Romanian composer Béla Bartók, accompanied by Székely musicians on Friday evening. All performances on the main stage are free to attend, but we recommend arriving early if you want to get in near the front. Performance aside, Góbéfest have also got family-friendly art workshops running through the weekend, covering everything from music, to dance, to writing in szekler runic script – the old Hungarian alphabet. The activities are run by artists from Transylvanian and Székely territories, as well as representatives from the Erasmus Plus project. All these activities are free, with a £3 suggested donation to help cover costs. As with many of the cultural festivals hosted in Albert Square, they’ve also got a market where you can buy food, booze and crafts from the region – including traditional chimney cakes, sausages and artisan gingerbread. The whole festival is organised by Beat Bazaar, a local creative music nonprofit that aims to provide young people with music making opportunities, alongside cultural exchanges like this one. Whilst there may be no Dracula at this festival, there’s still plenty to sink your teeth into.

Fri 22 Jun – Sun 24 Jun, Albert Square, M2 5DB. 12pm – 12am,

Fri 22 Jun - Sun 24 Jun
Jon Whiteley
Published on:
Wed 20 Jun 2018