The Kennedy Center

Parno Graszt



Biography

The Roma folk music group Parno Graszt formed in 1987 and is based in the members’ home village of Paszab. The group’s name means white horse, which in Romani folklore represents both purity and freedom. The sound of Parno Graszt is rooted in the traditional Gypsy songs of northeastern Hungary, representing a specific local dialect of Roma music. Their instruments are acoustic guitars, double bass, tambura, accordion, spoons, milk jugs, and vocal percussion, which is a continuous vocal improvisation similar to beatboxing. The group’s first album, Hit the Piano (2002), was the first Hungarian record in history to reach the Top 10 of World Music Charts Europe. Since then, Parno Graszt has produced three more albums and has been voted among the Ten Best Artists of the Year by the Swiss Vibrations Magazine. They have performed throughout Europe and around the world. In recognition of their work to preserve Romani culture and heritage, EBU and BBC produced a documentary about the group. The documentary, titled Parno Graszt, was selected for the Official Film Screening at WOMEX 2008. Parno Graszt is performing at the 2013 Smithsonian Folklife Festival as part of the Hungarian Heritage: Roots to Revival program.
Parno Graszt