Recordings from the Estonian Folklore Archives 3

Eleena Animägi

Eleena Animägi with her husband in 1965. Photo by A. Kiisla. ERA, Foto 9665.

The last carriers of the regilaul singing traditions in the once very rich region of Mulgimaa were the singers of Karksi Parish recorded in the 1960’s.

Eleena Animägi (1900–1993) was known as a performer and composer of newer songs. Of the older traditions the expeditions of the folklore archives only recorded St. Catherine’s day songs and herder’s calls from her. On her mother’s side of the family there were many good singers. Her father played the violin. In talking about singing Eleena recalled the long years she spent as a herder when the herders would sing already early in the morning as they took the herd out to pasture in order to keep awake. She often played the violin and psaltery with her husband and sang at “parties, public parks, in the ruins of castles, village parties” and other places.