А Folklore forum was held on 10 and 11 May 2021 within the project “Interpretation of Balkan Folklore Heritage” CB007.2.13.012 under the INTERREG IPA CBC BULGARIA-SERBIA programme.
The event began with a presentation of the research on the folklore dances and rituals (analysis on the rythm and dance patterns, style and dance techniques, elements of the traditonal folklore costumes, etc.) in the cross-border area (Pernik, Kustendil-Bulgaria and the region of Nishava-Serbia) which was conducted in the first stage of the project by Milcho Georgiev – ethnochoreologist and folklorist.
“The state of the folklore traditions in the cross-border region” with an emphasis on the area of Kyustendil was the topic of the presentation of Veska Spasova, PhD, an ethnologist in the Regional Museum of History in Kustendil. It was a great pleasure for the guests to dive into the world of the children’s games, the food, the clothing, the customs and the jewelry all the way up to the spiritual world of the ritual called “baene” as symbolism and magic.
“The very attitude towards the past and to what is happening today seems to form a feeling for unity, faith, hope. In the modern cultural environment, the folklore can be presented in many ways – artistic, verbal, mythological-ritual,” said Mrs. Spasova, PhD.
“Preservation of the cultural heritage” was the topic of Slavolub Uzunovich’s presentation who is from the Student’s Cultural Center Nis. Professor Uzunovich touched on many important issues such as “How to protect our cultural heritage?“. He emphasized on the importance of the pedagogues who teach folklore to children. He stated that the medias also have a big impact because they influence the attitude towards these tradutions, they inform and educate, they help form the taste of a person. The organisation of these folklore festivals, and of course, the job of the cultural centers, despite the fact that the state does not support them enough, are the key for the preservation of the folklore. We would add that the work of non-governmental organizations contributes too for the preservation and promotion of this cultural and historical treasure.
Milena Lubenova, Chief Assistant, PhD and Head of the National Center for Intangible Cultural Heritage within the Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Studies with Ethnographic Museum – Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, shared the importance of such forums, and above all, how vital it is to have more active connection between the scientifical domains and the cultural community centers as guardians and promotors of our cultural heritage.
Boika Mileva from “Future for Meshtitsa” association shared that for her the two days of the Forum felt like “a feast for the soul”.
Ivo Raichev, an online visitor, was impressed by the presentation of Prof. Slavolub Uzunovich and intrigued by the history, meaning and symbolism of the traditonal Bulgarian dance called “horo”.
Between our virtual guests there were also students from 11th grade of the Vocational High School of Clothing and Tourism “Svety Ivan Rilski” Pernik.
We could list many more great impressions which motivate us to continue our work with passion and enthusiasm. The fact that one hour after the online session ended our participants were still discussing and sharing differents points of view of the topics covered in the forum, makes us proud of the success of this event. The only thing that we regret for is that we weren’t able to meet personally with our colleagues from Nis because of the COVID-19 restrictions.
This article has been translated by Ines Bozhilova, 14 years old volunteer of AKSELS.