Thanks to Bulgarian photographer Elena Mandjukova we had a unique chance to show you how wonderful some Bulgarian folklore fairs looks like. Elenas photos catches right the essence of early Bulgarian nation, where the successfully demonstrated Bulgars in their war-like behavior and later the blend with the beautiful Slavic culture that made Bulgarians one very interesting and unique Slavic nation. Now a few words about the Rozhen National Folklore Fair, well that is the major Bulgarian folklore fair that local people flock with joy every four years in beautiful Rhodope Mountains which are located in Southern Bulgaria.
If you wonder what is the point of this fair, well their goal is to make Bulgarian folk culture popular and promote their culture in general, just like we do with all-Slavic on Slavorum!
If you wonder about the history of the festival, well it all started in summer of 1898 in the border between Bulgarian and Ottomans, so local Slavs, Bulgarians would gather from neighboring villages in the area to meet their family and friends that live inside the Ottoman Empire annexed territory of Bulgaria.
When Empire crumbled down the Bulgarians of Rhodopes were liberated so the fair wasn’t that political anymore, however they continued to meet and bit by bit it became their most famous and loved national holiday where they enjoy being Bulgarian in all it’s ways.
Best and largest fair happened back in 1972 when over 3500 musicians were at the fair and entertained over 150,000 people.
Ever since their freedom the open the festival with the song “Bela Sam Bela Yunache” which is their local anthem.
We hope you enjoy this, as folk festivals are always a cool experience.