KOSA KOLEKTIV + St.Nicholas Parish Mural Project…look out for it on your Queen West Strolllllls !

Myself (Marichka) and Olenka Kleban are excited to share with you that we’ll be making a public art mural on Queen West at Bellwoods as part of the St. Nicholas Parish gate beautification project ! The gate is between Nadege Bakery and the West side of the Church and needs some TLC.Years of narcissistic graffitti has made this gate an eyesore and with go-ahead from the parish preists, we’re gonna make it a little nicer to look at.  Olenka put together a design based on traditional “vytynnanky” paper cutting patterns popular in Eastern Europe. We haven’t settled on a colour palette yet, so if you have ideas, send us some swatches by e-mail to kosa.kolektiv at gmail.com :

 We are also hosting drop-in hours if people want to come help paint and be a part of this lasting art piece on the Queen West strip.

Drop-In Hours will be :
Saturday, July 26th 1-3 pm
Sunday, July 27th 1-3 pm

If you’re interested in helping out, shoot us a quick e-mail at kosa.kolektiv at gmail.com or and we’ll try to have enough brushes on hand for everyone. No artistic background required, just some good vibes and a willingness to take part in this fun project….

Ofcourse, the drop-ins are weather permitting. If the weather’s looking rainy, we’ll post on our facebook group on the morning of the event to let you know if it’s a go or not. Looking forward to getting colour scheme ideas everyone !

We want this to be everyone’s mural and we’re excited to share a little “життє радість” ( zhyttye radist’ – literally life joy in Ukrainian, in french joie de vivre) with passersby through folk art !

Summer is upon us! Let the celebrations begin!

Kupalo Купало

Time to honour and revel in the earth’s fertility….

kupalo dancing

Kupalo or Ivan Kupalo is a celebration of ancient origin marking the end of the summer solstice and the beginning of the harvest.  Among Slavic peoples Kupalo was believed to be the god of love and of the harvest and the personification of the earth’s fertility.

Having survived hundreds of years of repression, transformation, and commodification, Kupalo’s ancient power and meaning transcend time and cultural boundaries bringing us all together to cleanse ourselves with fire and water, and revel in the fertile energy of the earth.

On Kupalo’s eve unmarried young people gather outside in the forest or near a stream or pond. We build ‘Kupalo fires’ around which we perform ritual dances and sing songs. We leap over the fires, bathe in the water (an act of purification), and play physical games.  People who identify with the feminine wear scented herbs and flowers and adorn their hair with garlands of freshly cut flowers. Later they divine their fates according to what happened to the garlands which they had sent flowing on the water.

All unmarried folk who who would like to celebrate Kupalo in community are invited to contact us- we’ll be celebrating in July this year….

A Public Art Project – we need your support!

Olenka Kleban and Oksana Hawrylak have proposed an outdoor installation depicting the Ukrainian folktale “Reepka” (Turnip) for the Hamilton Farmers Market. It’s up to us to vote for them! It is open for public commentary, so check out the city’s public art page and vote!! Spread the word.
Check out their proposal and don’t forget to vote!
(voting closes on May 24th)




We are so happy and excited to have done the hailky celebration once again this year in Trinity Bellwoods Park. The cold weather was almost put to rest by our singing and calling of spring, not to mention we woke up the earth with some amazing khorovody and of course balfolk dancing lead by Emilyn Stam. 

Thank you so much to Carlos for taking photos and Tamara Romanchuk for filming the event! ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage


HAIVKY! Spring Revels in the Park on Easter Sunday.

The ancient Slavic tradition of celebrating spring outdoors with community has deep roots.

We’re reviving this practice in Toronto, for the 2nd year now! Join us!


HAIVKY: Community Easter Folk Celebration
Sun April 20th, 4pm-
til dark.  Trinity Bellwoods Park

Singing procession starts at main gates, leads into park.
Traditional singing, participatory folk dancing, games and walking formations. Ukrainian and Breton folk dances led by local musicians; Village Voice singing led by Kosa Koelktiv; games for children led by Plast youth.  Bring a picnic basket full of goodies and stay for the afternoon. Weather pending, activities might move indoors (into the church basement hall of St. Nicholas Church, 4 Bellwoods Ave.). If you miss the procession, you can find us under the red silk tent near the middle of the park.
We invite all singing groups and folklore groups to share their culture’s spring songs by joining us in the park. If you would like to sing spring songs or lead games or dances, we welcome your gifts, your presence. Please contact Bozena and Alex at kosa.kolektiv[at]gmail.com if you need more information, or just show up and take part!

Easter Bazaar!

Come visit the St. Nicholas Ukrainian Church bazaar this Sunday!

It’s “Kvitna Nedilya” (flowering Sunday) or “Palm Sunday” as Roman Catholics call it, and you can attend a beautiful service, receive fresh pussy willow branches, stay for a hot Ukrainian meal and peruse the bevy of pysanky, homemade Easter breads and crafts.


We will be selling gorgeous pysanky made by Olenka, paper cut-outs, cards, vintage and folk clothing, preserves, cookies, framed photographs, pysanka supplies… jewellery…. the usual colourful eclectic array you can expect from Kosa. The bazaar runs from 9am-2:30 under the church.


Learn to sing ancient spring calling songs – this Sunday! FREE

VesniankySpring Folk Songs
Ukrainian Village Voice Workshop
Learn ancient spring calling songs (vesnianky) from Ukraine, traditionally sung by women in loud “village voice” to usher in the spring and celebrate the return of the birds, the warmth, and the chance to return to the outdoors. You’ll leave with a desire to climb to the nearest hilltop and belt out those spring calls! Then you can satisfy that urge with us in Trinity Bellwoods Park on Easter Sunday :)
Taught by Maria Sonevytska, of NYC trio “Zozulka”. Instruction in English.
FREE (donations welcome, suggested $5)
Open to all. RSVP to kosa.kolektiv [at] gmail.com
Generously supported by the Shevchenko Foundation and our local Ukrainian Credit Union, and of course, super cool “St. Vlad’s”: St. Vladimir Institute.

ucu_logo2_colourshevchenko foundation logo



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