What is a Bertso?
Bertso sessions
Bertsolari performances
Basque bertsolari championships
Bertso Folios
Bertso schools
Bertsozale Elkartea

 The origin berso schools

 Mission of the berso schools

 Berso schools


   "...entrenatzeak ez dik balio
   sehaskatik ez badator "


   Throughout the history of bertsolarismo the dispute between heritage and schooling is as long as it is fruitless. The typical comment made about anyone who manages to become a good bersolari is that he or she has a natural gift, and therefore those who do not make lack natural talent. Whether inherited or learned, the fact is that most of the young bersolaris today have studied their art at a berso school.

The origin of berso schools.

   The first meeting called for the purpose of founding the first berso school was held in 1974. The school, set up in the town of Aretxabaleta by Patxi Goikolea, Xanti Iparragirre and Joanito Akixu (all three workers in a co-operative) took in 125 children. Members of the school included the Sarasua brothers, Danel Goikolea, Arantzazu Loidi and Jon Iñaki Izarzelaia. For a while there was another berso school, founded by Joanito Dorronsoro, in the town of Zumaia. Xabier Amuriza also played an important role in this initial period for berso schools.

Mission of the berso schools.

   The berso schools were created to fulfil the following tasks:

  • Bolster bersolarismo and see to its survival.
  • Promote berso enthusiasm and popularity.
  • Train bersolaris, people in charge of deciding on topics and judges.

   PIn order for berso schools to carry out their mission they need organisers, students and teachers. The materials and bibliographyprovided by the Federation of Ikastolas (Basque schools) and Bertsozale Elkartea have proven absolutely essential. And in terms of cohesion, relations and responsibilities between different schools, the admirable support and hard work of Jon Lopategi, Mikel Mendizabal, Jose Luis Basterretxea "Altzalei", Aitor Sarasua and Carlos Aizpurua, among others, has not been in vain.

Berso schools

    Today there are some 100 berso schools throughout Euskal Herria with a total of approximately 800 students.