Listen: <b>Web Extra</b>: Cion and Graffagna discuss the secular and sacred roots of their music
Listen: 'Shen Khar Vnakhi' (Georgia)
Listen: 'Shchedrik' (Ukraine)
Listen: 'Tec, Peleite, Zêrnju Zogtu' (courtesy 'All Songs Considered')
Drawing on the centuries-old tradition of female vocal music from Eastern Europe, the women's ensemble Kitka has won wide acclaim for their lush harmonies and stunning dissonances.
Jan E. Watson
The women's ensemble Kitka.
The women's ensemble Kitka. Jan E. Watson
On the CD Wintersongs, Kitka performs traditional hymns and village carols from Romania, Belarus, Latvia, Ukraine, and Macedonia — countries where winter is seen as a time to express hope for the return of light, health, and fertility in the coming year.
NPR's Jennifer Ludden talks with long-time ensemble members Shira Cion and Juliana Graffagna about the traditions of their music.