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First yodels for the Federal Yodelling Festival 2020 in Basel

For the 31st Federal Yodelling Festival 2020 in Basel, the first yodels were heard: Exactly one year before the big event with 12,000 participants and 150,000 visitors, those responsible presented the program and tastings on Wednesday.

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The organizing yodel choirs, alphorns and flag-wavers in the Schmiedenhof, not far from the market square, gave the over a hundred-strong audience a foretaste of what will be experienced in city of Basel from June 26th to 28th 2020. Under the festival motto "City and country “mitenand", traditional Swiss customs should enrich urban culture.

Yodelling also has a sporting aspect: in this context, all song performances - solo, as a group or as a choir - are assessed by a jury. Yodelling is demanding syllable singing without words with a well-dosed change from breast to head voice ("larynx") and there are regional differences .

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The bottom line is that around 1,500 appearances are planned, in twelve churches for yodeling performances, two schoolyards for alphorns and on the Barfüsserplatz the flag waving. All restaurants are on the Grossbasler Rhine side. A real “yodelling village” with an “yodelling mile” will be set up at the university on Petersplatz.

The highlight and conclusion is a parade on Sunday afternoon with over 1500 active participants wearing traditional Swiss costume. Cows, goats and mountain dogs also run through the inner city. The route leads through the Freie Strasse via the market square and the Middle Rhine Bridge to the exhibition center.

In addition, traditional fashion clothing as well as handicrafts and accessories will be offered for sale at an “Jodlermarkt”. This romantic mountain farming romance is complemented by culinary offerings such as Älplermagronen.

According to Daniel Buser from the organizing committee, the budget for the major event, which is held every three years, is around five million francs. The funds are to be generated through sponsorship, contributions from the public sector, contributions from active people and from catering contracts.

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According to the President, former Basel City Health Director Carlo Conti, planning is on schedule, but money is "not yet there". He also explained his motivation to participate with concerns about the "drifting apart" of city and country; the festival should bring together.

In any case, Karin Niederberger, the president of the Federal Yodelling Association, didn't miss her mountains on the knee of the Rhine: there was the Spalenberg. The bicantonal association of the Jodlerfest in Basel has four yodel clubs from Basel-Stadt and two from Basel-Landschaft.According to Buser, there were once around twenty yodel clubs in Basel, and today there are still five.

The 30th edition was held in Brig VS in 2017. The first Swiss yodelling festival in history was held in Basel in 1924 under the name “Swiss Yodelling Association Festival”. The Northwestern Switzerland Association organizes every 15 years - with the exception of 1924, however, in the cantons of Aargau and Solothurn.

Anyone wishing to perform at the Federal Yodelling Festival must qualify at a sub-association festival.

Published by: Blick Newspaper June 26. 2019

Translated by Google