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Pillerkaar, Estonian Folk Dancers from the Washington, DC Metro Area, had a busy and festive day when they performed at two holiday markets in Maryland on Saturday, December 7, 2019.

The festivities started at the West Annapolis Winterfest and European Christmas Market just around the corner from the Naval Academy's Michie Stadium where three couples opened the two-weekend market with a rousing folk dance performance. An enthralled crowd gathered around – some warming themselves at a nearby fire pit – as the dancers performed several of the Estonian classics.


The performance closed with what has become a Pillerkaar holiday tradition, "Oige ja vasemba", which was performed to "Welcome Christmas" from the original "How the Grinch Stole Christmas!" The audience was also invited to join in a couple dances.

But the day was just getting started, and – speaking of holiday traditions – the next stop was the German inspired Christmas Village in Baltimore and a joint Christmas show with the Baltimore-Washington Estonian Singers.


The Inner Harbor tent was packed with marketgoers to see the show, including a large contingent of the Baltimore and Washington Estonian communities, and the performers were prepared to get them into the holiday spirit.


Pillerkaar had an extra-long program of ten dances that was split into two sets situated around the choir's merry medley of Estonian Christmas carols. The two groups also performed jointly – singing and dancing – for two numbers: "Tuljak" and the audience participation dance to Curly Strings' "Kauges Külas."


It was a very jolly performance all the way around, and the ginger fresh piparkoogid, passed out to the crowd, were also a crowd pleaser!


by Jeff Zelek,


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