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All About, Lesson 10 - Top Five Things You Need to Know About Romanian Pop Culture
Eric: Hi everyone, I’m Eric, and welcome back to RomanianPod101.com. This is All About, Lesson 10 - Top Five Things You Need to Know About Romanian Pop Culture
Raluca: Bună! I’m Raluca.
Eric: In this lesson, we’re talking about pop culture! We’ll give you the top five things you need to know about pop culture in Romania.
Raluca: Now, pop culture is a hard topic to pinpoint because it’s constantly changing…
Eric: But Romanian culture is not only what you find between the walls of museum and churches, or what appears in textbooks and documentaries.
Raluca: Romanian pop culture today is on the cutting edge, covering everything from music to sports, and movies to fashion. The creativity of Romanian people is still giving many gifts to mankind.
Eric: By the way, it’s important to consider that the entertainment industry in Romania is strongly influenced by both European and American culture.
Raluca: Oh yes, that’s true!
Eric: Let’s start with the first topic, popular music!
Raluca: Romanian music now offers many talented singers and bands covering different genres, from melodic music and opera to rock.
Eric: Can you give us some examples?
Raluca: For example, Inna, Antonia, Alexandra Stan, Nicoleta Nuca, Dan Bittman, Horia Brenciu, Dan Bălan, and Smiley are very popular in Romania.
Eric: But some of them have considerable success abroad as well.
Raluca: Yes, especially recently. Angela Gheorgiu is probably the most beloved modern opera singer.
Eric: Let’s talk a little more about famous singers, Raluca...
Raluca: Well, Inna is a singer who first became famous on YouTube. She was the first European female singer to surpass one billion views.
Eric: Her fame grew and she sold millions of records worldwide. By the end of 2011 she was the richest recording artist in Romania and Eastern Europe. What about the male singers? Who is the most famous?
Raluca: The most famous in the music world is without a doubt the international star Dan Bălan. He started his career as an instrumentalist, songwriter, and singer.
Eric: Hmm, I don’t know him.
Raluca: Among the songs he wrote and produced was the international hit Dragostea din tei, known as the “Numa Numa song.” It’s one of the best selling songs in the history of world music. It sold more than 12 million copies in Europe, Asia and Latin America, and was translated into more than 14 languages.
Eric: He has also collaborated with international artists like Lady Gaga, Rihanna, and others. He sings in Romanian, English, Spanish and Russian. Alright, enough with famous artists. Who are your favorites?
Raluca: Oh...that’s easy. Dan Bittman, Horian Brenciu, Madalina Manole and also the rising star Nicoleta Nuca. I would definitely recommend their songs to our listeners.
Eric: Why do you like them?
Raluca: Their voices are very unique and the songs have great lyrics. Especially Dan Bittman, his songs are very poetic.
Eric: He is the singer of Holograf, right?
Raluca: Yes, they’re the most successful Romanian rock band.
Eric: Okay, let’s move on to the second thing you have to know about Romanian pop culture.
Raluca: We’re talking about movies!
Eric: Hollywood movies are very popular in Romania.
Raluca: But Romania has its own film culture with great names such as Horațiu Malaele, who made the film Nunta Mut, or “Silent Wedding” in English, and Radu Mihăileanu’s “The Concert.”
Eric: Oh yes, I’ve heard those are good films.
Raluca: “Silent Wedding” is a story set in a Romanian village where a wedding is interrupted by the news of the death of Stalin. Eric, do you like horror movies?
Eric: I do.
Raluca:Then you’ll probably like “Miss Christina,” directed by Cristian Mugiu.
Eric: I’ll give it a try. Thank you. Let’s talk about some other Romanian Films at the top of the list.
Raluca: “Closer to the moon” is a Romanian- American production directed by Nae Caramfil. The story is set in post- war Communist Romania.
Raluca: Other films are Filantropica by Nae Caramfil and “California Dreamin’ by Director Cristian Nemescu.
Raluca: I also liked “Nasa” and Mamaia, directed by Virgil Nicolaescu and Jesus del Carro.
Eric: Both are Romanian comedies.
Eric: I hope our listeners want to learn Romanian well so they can watch these movies in their original language. You appreciate them so much better that way!
Raluca: That’s definitely true!
Eric: Okay, but now let’s move on to topic number three, popular television.
Raluca: Romanian television boasts talk shows, sports shows, comedy programs, music programs, and TV news but mainly by American TV shows or Romanian shows adapted from American or English formats.
Eric: A lot of countries make these kinds of adaptations nowadays.
Raluca: Yes, shows like X Factor, The Voice are adapted in many countries.
Eric: Recently Romanians have become addicted to reality TV shows as well.
Raluca: One of the most popular shows in 2015 was “Romania’s Got Talent.”
Eric: Alright let’s see the next topic.
Raluca: Popular foreigners in Romania.
Eric: Among actors, Hollywood big-names such as Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, and Jennifer Aniston are very popular in Romania.
Raluca: In sports, we have Roger Federer, and the soccer players Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
Eric: But the largest numbers of popular foreign artists are musicians. Recently some singers like Taylor Swift and Adele have become very popular. Okay, we have finally arrived at the last topic.
Raluca: Yep, number five on our list is… Romanians who are famous abroad.
Eric: There are plenty of famous Romanians from the past, such as Prince Vlad the Impaler, Constantin Brâncusi, Maria Tănase, Nicolaie Ceaușescu and so on.
Raluca: But more recently, in sports, Romania soccer players such as Adrian Mutu, Ștefan Radu and Bogdan Stancu are probably the most well known because they play for foreign teams. In tennis, Romania is represented by Simona Halep, in boxing by Mihai Nistor, and in gymnastics by Sandra Izbasa.
Eric: Ah...Simona Halep. She’s currently second in the WTA rankings.
Raluca: Yes. My friends are so passionate about tennis because of her. I guess she inspired a lot of Romanians to play and watch tennis again.
Eric: Wow, that’s great! What are the other sports Romanians play and watch?
Raluca: Oh, Romanians adore soccer, it’s the national sport. The best Romanian player of all time was Gica Hagi, and he was very famous when he used to play.
Eric: He’s a very cool guy!
Raluca: And finally Eric, let me talk about the symbol of Romanian female beauty...
Eric: I think I know her… Are you talking about a singer?
Raluca: Yep, though she is no longer alive, Maria Tănase, had an international career.
Eric: Are there any Romanian beauties today?
Raluca: The most famous is Mădălina Ghenea, and she is an actress and model.
Eric: Raluca, we’ve learned a lot of interesting things about Romanian pop culture!!
Raluca: And we really wanted to add more and more!
Eric: But we’re all out of time for this lesson. Thanks for listening, everyone, and we’ll see you next time.