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X Song Festival Chicago

The Choral Experience: Dainava Lithuanian Chorale

In August of 1989, on the 50th anniversary of the Molotov-Ribbentrop non-aggression treaty whose secret protocols determined the eventual occupation of the Baltic republics, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia courageously organized a massive demonstration. Together, the people of these three sister countries created a 700km human chain—the “Baltic Way”—from Tallinn through Riga to Vilnius, to show the world their determination to be independent.

On August 23rd, 2014, Lithuanians in Lithuania and around the world commemorated the 25th anniversary of the “Baltic Way.” In Chicago’s Daley Plaza, representatives from Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Ukraine, USA, and other countries took part in “Embrace Freedom the Baltic Way.” Among the other notable musicians, singers, and dancers performing at the event were legendary Lithuanian rock musician Algirdas Kaušpėdas and Chicago’s own Dainava Lithuanian Chorale, led by Darius Polikaitis. The choir was so delighted to perform with Kaušpėdas, an icon of the Lithuanian “singing revolution,” even the pouring rain failed to dampen its spirits!

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