Dor Transylvanian folklore ensemble is one of the top 3 most valuable ensembles working in Cluj-Napoca, of the 20 ensembles in activity.
Even in the founding year 1994, all participate in the festival "Golden Stag" from Brasov and 1995 begins the task of representing the traditional Romanian culture in prestigious international festivals organized in Europe.
For nearly 25 years Dor whole Transylvania is Romanian folklore with honor and success in international festivals organized in France, Czech Republic, Italy, Poland, Greece, Turkey, Portugal, Spain and the United States.
Ensemble is composed of young dancers (pupils, students or employees), instrumentalists and singers of popular song. The ensemble dancers aged between 14 and 34 years and the instrumentalists between 18 and 72 years.
Laureate Award "Oscar folklore" World Festival "Castello di Gorizia" Italy, all Transilvan Dor is considered a true "cultural ambassador" of Cluj. (
Dor Transylvanian folk ensemble repertoire consists of 15 dances or games suite of the most beautiful and representative Transylvanian folk areas (Oas, Codru, Bihor, plain Transylvania, Sibiu, Brasov, etc.). Besides these, the ensemble's repertoire includes and "Moldovan suite of games" and the famous game "Callus Oltenia" - recently joined UNESCO game.
Orchestra ensemble is composed of a stable group of 10 musicians who sing both in traditional trio formula as well as in the Transylvanian folk band or orchestra restricted. Depending on the complexity of their performances orchestra can reach 15-20 instrumentalists. Most instrumentalists are educated musicians making it easy collaboration with the great interpreters of popular song. Over the years all Transilvan Dor collaborated accompanied almost all the great singers of Romania today, starting with Dumitru Farcas, Achim Nica and up to the famous Gheorghe Zamfir.
The artistic quality of games or gaming repertoire suites assembly is ensured by professional experience of over 40 years of prof. Florin Ciobanu choreographer.
The density shows of all Dor Transylvania, about 100 performances annually, approaching the artistic performances of the ensemble of professional ensembles in the country.
This makes each year all Dor Transilvan be invited to the biggest folk events such as the International Festival "Songs of the mountains" (Sibiu), Celebrations of Transylvania (Cluj), the international festival "Hercules" (Herculane) Festival game virginity in Transylvania (Cluj). Same great value of benefits Dor Transylvanian folk ensemble artistic collaborations facilitated artistic TVR (Elise Stan and Marioara Murarescu) and the Romanian Cultural Institute in Madrid, Prague and Warsaw.


ANNIVERSARY 1949 – 2004

Following the line of the cultural life development, the year 1949 marks the setting up of The Common Transportation Enterprise of Cluj (the present RATUC - Autonomic Enterprise of Urban Person Transportation), but also the birth of a folk music and dance group (alongside the other groups of the enterprise: the choir, the fanfare, the light music orchestra and the theatre group). The folk group takes part in the first national contests, placing itself on the first places at regional and city phases. Having a ceaseless activity, the folk music and dance group shortly stands out  in the main working and rural centers due to the high artistic level of the its shows. In time, the form of the folk dance group changed depending on the changes taking place in the transportation enterprise. Based on the very few information we have of that time, we can surely say that between 1968 and 1972 the artistic activity took place mainly within Somesana Folk Music Orchestra.

Between 1972 and1975 Somesana Orchestra of ITUC (the old name of RATUC - Autonomic Enterprise of Urban Person Transportation) merged with the amateur dance group of IMM 16 February, activating under the name of Ciobanasul (The Sheppard) and later under the name of Transylvania. It is with this last name that the group presented a lot of shows around the country. The repertory contained 6 dances: dances from Somes Valley, dance from Oas, “Calusul” dance, the man’s dance called “Haidau” and a wedding custom from Somes area. The singers were, at that time, Ana Groza and Liviu Becichi, together with the instrumentalist soloists Gavrila Maier (clarinet and pipe), Turca Alexiu (violin), Ioan Moloca (trumpet), Toader Nicolae (taragot- kind of clarinet), Czuli Ludovic(artistic whistle). The choreography was signed by Negru Gavrila and Aurel Olteanu and the music by Alexandru Tamas. In 1974, Transylvania Ensemble performs in Switzerland and in 1975 in Italy. After this artistic tour,   Alexandru Tamas together with instrumentalists Maier Gavril (clarinet) Costea Iosif (cymbal), Turca Alexiu (violin) and Elena Ghirca (dancer) split from the ensemble and together with the late Dumitru Virtic and some dancers from Electrometal, led by Bontidean Ezechel, formed the new Rapsodia Somesana Ensemble. Rehearsals have been taking place at ITUC Club ever since.

In October 1975, the recently created ensemble was awarded the Great Prize at the Autumn Festival organized in Cluj-Napoca, while next year, in 1976, it took part in the festival organized in Dej and also at the traditional feast on Mount Gaina. Having a predestined name – Rapsodia Somesana (Somes Rhapsody) – guided by the conductor Alexandru Tamas and by the choreographer Aurel Bulbuc, the ensemble comes third at the national contest of theme dance „Eroul de dincolo de munti” (The hero beyond the mountains), on the occasion of the first edition of Cantarea Romaniei Festival in 1977. In 1978 the ensemble tours in France.

In 1979 it is awarded with the first prize on the national contest and also with the jury’s prize at Cantarea Romaniei. In 1981 it tours in Finland and also comes first place on “Caluserul Transilvanean” Festival, as it does in 1982, too. In this period, the ensemble performs around 30 shows annually, in collaboration with the greatest folklore singers in the country: Irina Loghin, Benone Sinulescu, Mariana Draghicescu, Achim Nica, Nicoleta Voica, Dragan Muntean, Ioan Bocsa, Nicolae Furdui Iancu and others. Its repertory enriches with folk creations of the most representatives areas in the country: dance of Palatca, dances of the Somes Valley, women’ dance of Crihalma and Seredei, “Tarnaveana” for the boys, dances from Moldavia, “Calusul” of Oltenia, dances from Oas, wedding customs from Somes Valley, orchestra series of Somes Area, of Bihor, Oltenia, Banat and Moldovia, Dobrica’s ring dance and „ sârba” with the famous ring dance Stacato and “Ciocârlia”, as well as the songs performed by the singers: Nicolae Bondoi, Mia Dan and Rozalia Iuga. The numerous international tours of this period are a sign of recognition for the value of the ensemble:  France-Italy 1974 and 1975, France 1978, Finland 1981, France-Italy 1982, Bulgaria 1983, Italy 1984, France-Italy 1985 and 1986, Italy 1989, 1991 and 1992, and USA 1994. The 1994 tour ends the remarkable artistic activity of a whole generation of dancers, instrumentalists, choreographers and soloists, devoted to bringing forward the priceless Romanian folklore in spite of all the hardships and political restrains of that time.

Starting with 1994 it is the turn of another generation of artists to carry on the artistic tradition of RATUC. Under a new name - Dor Transilvan (Transylvanian Longing), with the support of the enterprise’s trade union and under the choreographic leadership of professor Florin Ciobanu, the ensemble is rebuilding and participates that same year at “The Golden Stag” Festival together with the soloist Aurel Tamas. All series of dances from the most representative areas of the country are reorganized, the orchestra is completed and the ensemble starts performing for the public in Cluj under the new name. Two new presences on the national TV post take place in 1995 in the company of the famous folklore singer and editor Sava Negrean Brudascu, as well as radio recordings with professor Gelu Furdui. In 1995 the ensemble represents the Romanian folklore at The International Festival of Middlesbrough – England. During the show organized for the Woman’s Day in Cluj, the ensemble performs alongside great Romanian artists like Stela Popescu, Alexandru Arsinel, Petreus Brothers and Luca Novac. In 1996, the ensemble is present again on the national TV post with recordings made with Niculina Merceanu and takes part in the International Festival of Strakonice-Czech Republic. The ensemble is also present in the cultural manifestations organized by Avram Iancu Society at Tebea, Marisel, Bistrita and Avram Iancu. It organizes its own performances for the public of Cluj and the employees of the enterprise and takes part in the 19th edition of the Somes Cultural Festival in Dej. In 1997, the ensemble is present in folklore festivals in Staznice-Czech Republic and Strzegom-Poland.  As a sign of appreciation for the ensemble’s presence in the festival The Romanian Embassy in The Czech Republic sent a congratulation card. Dor Transilvan was also invited in live TV shows in Poland and in The Czech Republic. Following this tours, the ensemble is present at national festivals like”Ecouri Mesesene” in Zalau and “Floare de pe Baragan” in Slobozia. In the fall of 1997, the ensemble organizes “Tezaur folcloric” (Folklore Treasure) together with the famous TV editor Marioara Murarescu,  having famous guests like: Dragan Muntean, Laura Lavric, Sava Negrean Brudascu, Florica Ungur, Dinu Iancu Salajeanu, Florentina and Petre Giurgi, Petreus  Brothers together with the young soloists of the ensemble Nicolae Turcu and Crina Varga Moisi. Dor Transilvan also collaborates with Cluj-Napoca Local Council for all the national manifestations like The National Day, The Unification Day …1998 marks, besides the already traditional performances in Cluj, the presence in The International Festival of Mistrin (The Czech Republic) and a tour in France and Italy.

34 shows, two recorded presences on Antena 1 and TVR Bucharest, a tour in France and another one in Romania accompanied by the Italian ensemble “Danzerini di Lucinico” make 2000 the busiest of all the years post revolution. With an average of 3 shows per month, our ensemble is one of the most active in the country. Our ensemble took part in all sorts of shows in 2000: organized by ourselves, humanitarian shows for children in orphanage, debut shows for Cornelia and Lupu Rednic or Marius Ciprian Pop, anniversary shows of Michael the Brave’s unification, shows for the National Day or for the 24th of January, proving everywhere the diversity of its repertory. We joined on stage other famous names like Traian Jurchelea, Mariana Anghel and Nicoleta Voica. Three days after returning from France we recorded in Ieud, Maramures a show for Antena 1 and TVR Bucharest making us more famous, as well as taking part in The Transylvanian Feast Festival, “Samus” Festival in Dej or The International Folk Camp in Sancraiu. In 2001 we concentrated on strengthening the image of the ensemble, on varying our ways of presentation. Thus, we made the presentation tape, the web page, personalized calendars and an audio tape with our musical repertory.

Other famous folklore soloists like Grigore Lese and Nicolae Muresan joined us on stage on different occasions like The Woman’s Day or The New Year’s Eve. As a premiere in Cluj-Napoca, our ensemble presented a show, joined on stage by a Hungarian ensemble, show that proved to be very well received by the local Hungarian community. As a result, Dor Transilvan was the only Romanian ensemble invited at the “Milenium” Festival of the Hungarian community. The successes of the ensemble were once more presented in one of the local papers “Adevarul de Cluj” and the presentation leaflets of The Transylvanian Feast Festival and Saint Stephan Festival.

The ensemble is also well presented in the Repertory of the Folk Ensembles edited by The District Center of Traditional Culture Preservation. Our presence in folk radio and TV broadcasts complete the means of presenting our ensemble. The participation in the festivals of Norma, Sabaudia and Pena St. Andreea-Italy were good occasions for promoting the Romanian folklore. For the 4th time, Dor Transilvan was invited by the Prefecture of St George in the National Day show. 2002 was a busy year as well: The Transylvanian Feast Festival (with 25 participating ensembles), The Feast on Mount Gaina – where our ensemble represented our district, together with ensembles from Arad, Bihor, Hunedoara and Alba Districts. As a sigh of appreciation, Dor Transilvan is constantly invited in different festivals: in Sf. George for The National Day, in Iara for the Miner’s Day, in Cugir for “Toamna Cugireana” Festival, in Marisel for the commemoration of our heroes, in Ocna-Mures for “Sarbatoarea Fiilor Satului”, in Cluj for The Unification Day. Every year, the gallery of famous soloists joining our ensemble on the stage has been growing bigger. In 2002, Margareta Clipa and Ionela Prodan performed in Cluj after many years of absence. That same year, we put on stage “Vergelul”, folk dance series from Bihor area, while the orchestra improved its repertory. A third exchange of dancers within the ensemble happened without any fluctuation on the artistic level. For the first time in our ensemble’s history, the dancers are almost all city born, having no direct connection with the rural world and the traditional culture. The oldest, still active dancer in Cluj-Napoca is also part of our ensemble and his name is Radu Rus.

In 2003, Dor Transilvan performed 24 times, took part in 4 national festivals and one international festival in Poland. Two of its traditional shows were broadcasted on TV and it also had a good presence on the local and national television, radio and press. Dor Transilvan was also the only ensemble present in the album about Cluj District, edited by Prof Image in 5000 copies. With a number of 33 artistic presences, Dor Transilvan stood out among the ensembles in our district. So, this was 2003 in numbers. Chronologically, the year started with the 24th of January anniversary, organized together with the local authorities, then with the radio broadcast of 11 February dedicated exclusively to Dor Transilvan. As a sign of appreciation, on the 8th of March, the traditional show of Dor Transilvan, with its special guests Achim Nica and Ioan Bocsa, gathered a fully crowded auditorium, even if one day before, that same auditorium hosted a long 6 hour show of the national television with Marioara Murarescu and 30 guests. Our show was broadcasted in Transylvania by TVR Cluj on the 23rd of March.

At the end of March, Dor Transilvan organized a release show for a CD of our beloved folklore soloist, Achim Nica. On the 1st of May, the ensemble started its cooperation with The Ethnographic Museum for « Flori de Mai – Armindenul » Feast. Between 9 and 11 of May, the ensemble took part, alongside other 25 ensembles, at the Transylvanian Feasts Festival. In June, the ensemble was present in Aiud for the anniversary of the town and in July it was present with a wedding customs on Antena 1 and Prima TV. The month of August brought participation at The Miner’s Day in Iara, together with soloists Achim Nica, Traian Ilea, Valeria Codorean and especially the presence in the Folk Festival in Posnan, Poland, with a visit at the Romanian Embassy in Warsaw and shows in Radom, Posnan, Szamotuly, Szcegom, Leszno, Grodziska Wielkopolskiego, also a visit in Krakow. The tour in Poland also meant a switch of generations within the ensemble, both for dancers and orchestra, as well as taking over the choreographic guidance by Radu Rus, the most experienced dancer. As a proof of its success in Poland, a congratulation card was sent by the Romanian Embassy in Warsaw and a new invitation arrived only three month after returning home, to take part in celebrating the National Romanian Day in Warsaw and Posnan. The month of August brought the presence in the festival organized by the Hungarian community at Banffy Castle in Bontida, where we were the only Romanian ensemble invited.

In September, we took part in four events organized by PSD, The Police Department of Cluj and The Local Council of Cugir and received an invitation form South Korea. As a result of presenting ourselves on the internet, we received proposals of cooperation from a Japanese panpipe player, from a Turkish television, an academy teacher in New York and greetings from our dancers of the 80’.

With an average of 18 years old, the present generation is the youngest one in the recent history of our ensemble. The month of December brought a record of participations in all our 9 years of recent activity: 13 artistic presences in only one month!!! As usual, Dor Transilvan was the last one to end its activity with the New Year’s Eve performance. This time, we focused on improving the artistic quality of our performance and came forward for our public with tape releases: Christmas carols of Lucian Petrean, dance songs of Ana Ilca Muresan, new soloist debut for Maria Butila Bonzar and performance of Margareta Clipa.

As a result of this rich artistic activity is the fact that Dor Transilvan became famous not only at home but also abroad, as a keeper of the authentic values of the Romanian folklore, carrying on the artistic traditions within RATUC. At the 55th anniversary, a thank you is meant to all those who dedicated part of their lives to the prestige of our ensemble  and to those who constantly sustained its activity: RATUC Leadership and Trade Union, The Culture Department of Cluj District, Cluj-Napoca Local Council, BCR and ARDAF banks.

Tiberiu Groza
Manager of Dor Transilvan