HISTORY 2017-10-29T18:24:48+00:00


Oinkari Basque Dance Group was founded in 1975 in Villabona, a friendly village located in the province of Gipuzkoa in Basque Country. The aim of the group was to compile, learn and teach Basque dances. Young people who used to sing in the church initiated the first step in the foundation of Oinkari after having considered a proposal made by the Segurola sisters, who used to teach dances in Zizurkil, a village next to Villabona.

The first meeting held for the establishment of Oinkari Basque Dance Group cannot be easily forgotten since it was on 20th of November, the day when Franco died. Around 60 people used to meet in a local place for young people called “la sala” for dancing. A few years later they started rehearsing in another place called “Zatorra”. At Oinkari, participants also took part in other activities of the village, apart from learning dances. At that time, the movements in favour of Euskara (the Basque language) were very important and the Oinkari Basque Dance Group joined these movements to promote them.

The Oinkari made its first debut on May of 1976 at a festival organized by the parish at the “Gurea” cinema in order to collect funds. From that date on, the Oinkari performers started dancing in many villages of the region: Atallo, Lizartza, Tolosa, Irura, Aduna, Sorabilla, Zizurkil, Amasa, Urretxu… and gained a lot of popularity. Their wonderful performances and fame also got them chances to dance far away from Villabona. Their most remarkable performance was one that was held in Murueta, a little village in the province of Bizkaia.

The Oinkari worked for many years not only learning dances and teaching them, but also repairing costumes and related accessories for the performances. Due to lack of funds, each member of Oinkari used to pay a fee of 25 pesetas per week, which was also the main income of the group. We cannot forget the socks embroidered by the “Clarisa” nuns of Tolosa, the mirror bought in the fleamarket of Burlada or the parties that Oinkari held with the excuse of preparing huts and related items. Most of the young people in Villabona were involved in Oinkari.

Oinkari started organizing dance-classes for children in 1997, which is why Villabona can now see many good dancers. The lessons took place during the week before the main rehearsal of the group as well as on Saturday mornings.

The future of Oinkari became insecure since some boys went to do the military service. In spite of this, the group went on and surprisingly this year Oinkari had 24 performances. The group was further weakened due to some arguments, and then some members decided to leave Oinkari while others gave up dancing after getting married. In addition to this, the big flood of 1983 destroyed costumes and material that were stored in the old townhall. Taking into account the terrible situation of Oinkari, the members decided to finish the group.

Some years later, at the town-festivals of 1992, a folk dance called “Inude eta Artzaiak” was organized by some members of Oinkari Basque Dance Group. Both young and old people from Villabona took part in that folk dance. Thanks to this project, the next generation of Oinkari was put into gear. They used to rehearse on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. First in a room of the “Kultur Etxea” and later in the attic of the school “Jesusen Bihotza Ikastola”.

The second generation began the new phase with enthusiasm. Those years were very nice due to the motivation of the members and the cheerful atmosphere between all of them.

On September 1997 Oinkari started offering dance-lessons for children again and thanks to this, Oinkari could face up to the lack of dancers suffered until that time. Oinkari had lots of successful performances like the one held at the local festivity of Villabona. Performances were held in local festivities of small towns like Amasa, Sorabilla, Aldudes or Aia. The most important performance was the one of “Egunkaria Eguna” in Amasa.

From 1992 onwards, Oinkari hasn’t suffered any other interruption in its activity. Oinkari has had its own crisis like every dance-group in the Basque Country. Anyway, Oinkari has overcome problems and that has made the group stronger. That’s the reason why Oinkari comprises of very good, determined & qualified dancers. Difficult decisions have been taken and as a result, Oinkari is now more motivated than never before.

“Time is going on…”