Thousands of folkloric creations from the region between the Prut and Dniester rivers, archived at the Institute of Cultural Heritage and the Institute of Romanian Philology „Bogdan Petriceicu Hasdeu” from Chişinău were digitised and offered better conditions of preservation in 2018, through a British-funded project. The results of the project will be presented Friday, the 11th of January 2019, in a conference held by the members of the project team in Sala Mică of the Academy of Sciences of Moldova.
Through the grant „Saving the folkloric archival material preserved in Chişinău, Republic of Moldova (EAP1045)”, won by dr. hab. Victor Ghilaş, musicologist, director of the Institute of Cultural Heritage from Chişinău, and administered by the Association Eurocentrica from Bucharest, a significant part of the folkloric archival material gathered between 1946-1990 in the Moldovan villages by the Moldovan Branch of the USSR Academy of Sciences was digitised and will be soon made accessible online. The Grant is offered by the British Library, with the support of Arcadia Charitable Fund, through the Endangered Archives Programme, whose objective is to facilitate scholarschip and research by identifying and preserving the archival material at risk, concerning pre-modern societies from all over the world.
The digitised material comprises 450 volumes of written notes and recordings stored on nearly 500 reel tapes, dealing with folkloric songs, carols, tales and many other folkloric creations, gathered in the Soviet period from the nowadays territory of the Republic of Moldova, but also from regions currently belonging to Ukraine. The material was preserved in precarious conditions until the beginning of the project, due to limited public funding. Soon, it will be freely available online, for non-commercial use, on the project’s website (http://folkloricarchival.asm.md/) and on the special section of the site of the British Library (https://eap.bl.uk/).
Other results of the project that will be presented during the conference are the relocation of the physical archival material to optimal conditions of storage and the training of the Moldovan members of the project team in digitisation and archival management, made by foreign experts.