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Pianist Jose Okiñena opened the VI Congress of Basque Culture in Montevideo: tributes, talks and presentations


Concert by Josu Okiñena in Montevideo
Concert by Josu Okiñena in Montevideo


Montevideo, Uruguay. Organized by the Euskal Erria Society in Montevideo, the VI Congress of Basque Culture in Uruguay was held December 10-13.  The event’s inauguration was held at the Legislative Palace with a performance by pianist, Josu Okiñena, who performed “Xuxurlak,” and was sponsored by the Euskal Erria Society, Eusko Jaurlaritza and the Etxepare Basque Institute.

As part of the event, Dr. Xabier Irujo paid an emotional tribute to the memory of Maria Ana Bidegaray who was a member of the Euskal Erria Society and whose life inspired a new novel by renowned writer Arantzazu Ametzaga.  Also participating in the event was the “Voices of the Plaza” choir directed by Franicsco Simaldoni.

On Wednesday the 12th at the CLAEH University, Xabier Irujo from the Center for Basque Studies at the University of Nevada, Reno spoke again, this time about social economy in the Basque Country, while Josu Okiñena and Alberto Irigoyen spoke about Basque culture and Basque musicians in Uruguay.

In Thursday, December 13th at Euskal Erria, there was a meeting of Basque American publishers Ekin in Buenos Aires and Euskal Erria in Uruguay.

Among the books presented are María Ana Bidegaray by Arantzazu Ametzaga; Social Economy in the Basque Country, by Aitor Bengoetxea; Basque Culture in Uruguay, by Adriana Patrón, Eneko Sanz and Alberto Irigoyen; Gramera Berria, by Francois Jauréguy; and Air Pyrénees, Euzkadi's Airline, by Iñaki Etxaniz Tesouro. All are available here:

After the meeting, all present shared dinner.

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