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In 1969, with the establishment of the Branch of the Academy of Physical Education in Biała Podlaska, the idea of creating a Folk Dance Group was born. In October 1970, the Dean of the university, doc. dr Władysław Romanowski asked the choreographer Helena Januszczyk with a proposal that she lead the Student Group.

“We worked very hard - two and a half hours twice a week. Everyone was full of enthusiasm for work. There were several dancers in the group with experience in other groups. They set the tone for the work, encouraged them to practice when the other members of the team were tired or found it difficult. Such an "enthusiast" was Marian Rzedzicki – a second-year student who previously represented one of the Lublin teams and the WSS team in Biała Podlaska” - recalled H. Januszczyk.

The first concert (still wearing borrowed costumes) took place on March 21, 1971 in Janów Podlaski . It initiated a series of performances on the occasion of national and national holidays and various types of celebrations taking place at the University. At the beginning, only 10 couples danced in the group. It was not until the 1974/75 academic year that the organizational structure changed, as two dance groups were created: the first, the so-called "Older" (2nd, 3rd and 4th year students) and the second "younger" (1st year students). In 1975, the ensemble participated in the National Review of Artistic Achievements of the physical education universities in Gdańsk-Oliwa, gaining a high opinion of jurors there, and on December 19, 1975, the 5th anniversary was celebrated. In 1976, as a reward for the effort and the presented artistic level, ZTL "Podlasie" had the opportunity to participate in the first foreign trip to Bulgaria. In the same year, due to poor health, choreographer Helena Januszczyk said goodbye to work in the group, and Ryszard Kapica took her place for two years.

In the academic year 1979/80, ZTL "Podlasie" started its activity under the guidance of Emma Cieślińska, Marian Rzędzicki and Mieczysław Balcerzak . At the same time, the university choir joined the ensemble and the Student Song and Dance Ensemble "Podlasie" was established.

The 1992/93 academic year began with intensive trials preceding the verification, which Podlasie passed positively and received approval for presenting Poland at the CIOFF International Festivals for three years.

In December 1993, ZPiT "Podlasie", under the direction of the choreographer Emma Cieślińska and the then manager of the band Zenon Celiński , recorded a film for TVP entitled "Tańce polskie-Podlasie" . An educational and promotional cassette with instructions for Podlasie folk dances has been released. At the beginning of 1994, the band continued recording for TVP - the second part of the program was shot in Ciechanowiec.

In the academic year 2000/2001, the team was joined by Marcin Bochenek, a long-time dancer of the group, who also started working at the university in Biała.


As part of the project"Folk dances and games as a factor of integration of children and youth of the Polish-Belarusian-Ukrainian borderland"implemented in the years 2006-2008, the ensemble has its own wardrobe and a professional dance hall. In the following years, new sets of dance costumes were purchased, including: Beskid Śląski, Lachy Sądeckie, Krakowiaki Wschodnie, etc.


Year after year, the team develops, and the instructors and dancers set themselves new goals and challenges. Since 2008, Podlasie has changed its character of musical arrangements. He started working with the teamPrzemyslaw Marcyniak(musician, arranger and conductor). The band also recorded their entire show in a recording studio.

A new breath appeared with the creation of subsequent choreographies, and at the same time an unprecedented combinationfolklore and jazz.  Since 2010, ZPiT Podlasie has been performing together withBialski Jazz Trio, combining these two forms on the basis of the native Podlasie.

In the latest activity of the group, during subsequent concerts and performances, bold ideas, choreographies, as well as new sets of costumes appear. The band's repertoire, apart from Impresje Podlaskie, with new versions, was includedEastern Krakowiak and the Duchy of Warsaw - "The Small State of Great Hopes"in choreographyMarcin Bochenek and arrangement by Przemysław Marcyniak. The last presentation was created with a special dedication toMs Emma Cieslinska, and its premiere took place during the Benefit.


In 2016,  after the artistic review of the program, ZPIT Podlasie receivedcertificategranted at the request of the Council of Experts entitling to representPolish Section of CIOFF in Poland and abroad during the next 5 years of operation.

They joined the teamAnna Litwiniuk and Damian Jablonski -dancers of Podlasie for many years, who started working with a group of first-year students.

An interesting event in the academic year 2016/2017 was a trip toSouth America.Argentine Tango inBuenos Airesthree internationalfestivals in Paraguayand Iguazu Fallsin Brazilthese are only the highlights. An unforgettable journey, concerts in front of an enthusiastic audience and sometimes nearly 2,000 spectators in the stands - whoever was there, who survived - will remember it forever. 

Festival in Belarus (November2017), numerous concerts in Poland, as well as the promotion of the  program combining Podlasie folklore and jazz (Impresje Podlaskie - Dance folklore of Podlasie in musical jazz interpretations)- made this year extremely intense. 

New year2018began with work on the third part of Impresje Podlaskie, which premiered in February in Sokołów Podlaski. Two dimensions of Podlasie and a concert with ZPiT Sokołowianie crowned the work on the entire project.


Song and Dance Ensemble "Podlasie"combining folklore and jazz in March 2018, hostedTVP Poloniain programHello Poloniaperformed live, in which he presented fragments of Impresja: Krakowiak and Kujawiak Podlaski.


The academic year 2017/2018 ended with a trip to a fantastic "Surabaya Cross Culture International Folk Art Festival 2018" to Indonesia. Presenting the native folklore of Podlasie on the stages ofSoutheast Asiathe team also visited the most interesting places on the islandsBali and Java. The amazing artistic and tourist impressions of this trip can be followed additionally on our social channels.  

In the 2018/2019 academic year, we constantly raised the bar. This period can definitely be considered the most hardworking and very demanding in the history of the team. New choreographies: dance and music spectacle Lublin-Podlasie Palindromesin choreographyMarcin Bochenekand musical studiesPrzemysław Marcyniakwere presented on many stages in the country and abroad. They marked out another important areas of artistic activity for us. Design"Shrovetide in Podlasie" implemented in the region enjoyed great interest. During this period, the group danced over 60 concerts. All these activities allowed our  dancers to gain skills and necessary experience. We also did not give up our traditional activities - we have implemented, as every year for over 25 years, on a large scale "Educational meetings with folklore". In May 2019, we could also boast of an important project for us under the ProgramEthnoPoland 2019 National Cultural Center: Festival of Traditional Podlasie Dances and Games"Korobeczka"for which we received  funding in the amount of PLN 81,000. 


We did not have to wait long for the effects of this systematic and hard work.  Verification came under 20th International Büyükçekmece Culture and Art Festivalwhich was held inTurkey. A gigantic undertaking, under the auspices ofCIOFFandFIDAFboth organizational and artistic - the festival fully deserves to be called one of the largest and most prestigious in the world. More than 1,600 participants from 71 countries came to Istanbul for the competition on the stagesfrom July 26 to August 4over 1,000 dancers from 28 countries showed up. Competition and presentations for more than 50,000 spectators in Istanbul took place on several stages in 3 well-staffed groups. We finished the competition with two valuable prizes: for the best music ex aequo with Taiwan and the 2nd place for the best show in the solo/duo category for the Duchy of Warsaw - "Little State of Great Hopes" performed by dancersMarta Stolarczuk and Jakub Brzuchalski.


An important element of the group's activity at that time was the 1st Festival of Traditional Podlasie Dances and Games"Korobeczka 2019" implemented as part of the projectEtnoPolska 2019, National Center for Culture. The festival was full of events and a large group of over 3,500 participants. Workshops for children and youth, training for teachers and concerts were organised. As part of the project, a monograph was created: "Dance folklore of Podlasie in education" published by AWF Warszawa 2019, supplemented with recordings made in the S4 Polish Radio studio named after J. Wasowskiego. 

In the fall of November 2019, the band "Podlasie" had the opportunity to dance a concertin Matecznik Mazowsze.The event is took place as part of the Song and Dance Ensemble projectVarsovian, University of Warsaw entitled: "Jack Dance".  The concert was an opportunity for us to present ourselves to a wide audience, as well as a test before the next festival and the final concert as part of the jubilee. Only a week later, already in our own backyard, we carried out a large concert and project as part of the jubilee of the 50th anniversary of the University of Physical Education, Branch in Biała Podlaska.

INJanuary 2020We embarked on another artistic journey toUnited Arab Emirates and Oman. However, it was not an easy time. The situation in the Middle East, as well as national mourning in Oman, made this festival completely different from the ones we knew. Instead of dancing sensations thanks to determination organizers, we brought with us many tourist memories and a lot of strength to prepare for the most important  parties in recent years.

The jubilee year is always a big challenge, a lot of emotions and impressions. The academic year 2019/2020 is full of meetings and groupings not only of current dancers but also of graduates. A lot of beautiful, hardworking and carefree moments are behind us. However, time stopped for us - from day to day. We have currently canceled the date of the final concert (April 25) - we have no further plans.What's next? The whole world and our country is fighting the pandemic coronavirus.We are waiting patiently, full of hope for further events, hoping that we will return safely and as soon as possible to our work, music and dance hall.

During isolation and months of restrictions, we tried to function in an unusual way for ourselves. All suspended concerts with the audience forced a different nature of work. Concerts and online actions were the only form of activity for us at that time. However, we managed to make up for some of the backlog and conduct several photo and film sessions. The most important project, which, with many perturbations, was finally implemented in 2020 wasthe band's first ever studio album. Recorded musicin the S4 studio of Polish Radiofinally released in 2021 on major music services. The premiere of the album is just around the corner. 

We managed to survive an unusual period of activity for us. We also returned to our work and concerts. On June 19, 2021, the band again applied for the screening of the artistic program carried out beforeCommittee of Experts of the Polish Section of CIOFF®. The effects of our work appreciated and noticed allowed us to enjoy the next onepositive evaluationfor a maximum period of the next 5 years. Until June 19, 2026Song and Dance Ensemble "Podlasie"will be able to represent the country at festivals at home and abroad. During this unique concert"Dancing landscapes"premiere of our program:"Kurpiowskie Honey Harvest"in musical arrangementPrzemysław Marcyniakand choreographyMarcin Bochenek.

Year 2021/2022is a wealth of interesting concerts, as well as cooperation with institutions and organizations. The dance camp, as well as the change of composition and youth, provoked many new activities. Concert "Jackie Dancing in Podlasie"WithSong and Dance Ensemble of the University of Warsaw "Warszawianka"within3rd edition of the Festival Bogusław Kaczyńskiin the Biała amphitheater was a unique spectacle for the large audience. Our dance project was a big undertaking and a logistical challenge"The art has followed us"implemented under the programme"It's worth being Polish" Marshal's Office of the Lubelskie Voivodship.Two days of concerts with the bands of AWF Warszawa, Kortowo and Warszawianka brought us many dance impressions and interesting experiences. In terms of dance, 2021 was very special and full of big concerts and events.


In 2021, the Artistic Manager of our teamDr. Marcin BochenekleftAn expert of the Polish Section of CIOFF®International Council of Folklore Associations, Festivals and Folk Art, and during the 15th General Assembly he was elected to the positionVice-Chairmanthis organization (Polish Section of CIOFF®).

An interesting proposition for our dancersin 2022will be implemented at our Academy of Physical Education, Branch in Biała Podlaskamajor in Physical Education and DanceFor this purpose, as part of the promotion of this new offer, our team has prepared another program "Cinematograph in Bielany - Dances and Games of Old Warsaw". The performance with music arranged by Przemysław Marcyniak and choreography by Marcin Bochenek refers to the images of pre-war Warsaw and the history of the home Academy of Physical Education. With dance and a dose of humor, the viewer could move to the Bielany forest, which, after regaining independence, was once again "swarmed with picnickers". The show was produced and co-financed as part of a public task in the field of project cultureof the City Hall, supported by the Mayor of Biała Podlaska - Michał Litwiniuk.

In July 2022, after a year of systematic work, students and dancers of Podlasie had a chance to participate in two international festivals againin Turkey and Portugal,which we have been waiting for during the pandemic definitely impatiently.

The 2022/2023 academic year is a lot of dance challenges. A very intense time began with a dance camp and research carried out at the Regional Research and Development Center of the Academy of Physical Education. The first semester was marked by big concerts, trips andthe Michał Kosiński National Dance Festival CIOFF®,which we became a finalist. The end of 2022 is also a big challenge related to the implementation of the project co-financed by the Ministry of Education and Science entitled"Intergenerational Educational Center - Dance Folklore of Podlasie". Workshops, training for teachers, dance parties, mornings with folklore, subsequent recordings in Studio S4 of the Polish Radio are only selected tasks accompanying this intense period.  

Years of work and commitment, hundreds of dancers and graduates, numerous trips, concerts and festivals. The most important pages of history have been recorded in the chronicles, and they remain in the memory of all our dancers.Song and Dance Ensemble "Podlasie"it is an institution, but it is also a "living organism" that functions simultaneously with the development of the Biała University and a group of people who come here and always come back.

The Song and Dance Ensemble "Podlasie" has danced over 1,776 concerts in Poland and abroad in its 50 years of activity. He participated in 53 international folk festivals in Europe, Asia and South America. He trained 64 dance instructors, 17 of whom run their own dance groups.

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