Rozhen Folklore Festival – the magic of the Rhodope Mountains

Rozhen Folklore Festival

Rozhen Folklore Festival – the magic of the Rhodope Mountains

The green fields of Rozhen and Rhodope Mountains will fill with live again from 15th of July 2016 until 17th of July under the impact of magnetic sounds of Bulgarian bagpipes and Rhodope songs of Rozhen Folklore Festival.

Rozhen festival has over one hundred years of tradition. The first festival was organized in 1898. The idea was given by father Angel Indjov – a priest in Sokolovtsi. He urges his parishioners to honor all the saints of the Rozhen chapels on the Day of St. Panteleimon – July 27, at “St.. St. Kirik and Julita “where today is held the festival. Then the border between Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire went through Rozhen peak. Here gathered the inhabitants of three artificially divided surrounding villages – Progled from Bulgarian side Momchilovci and Sokolovtsi the Turkish side of the border.  The festival has started as family meetings where folk songs were sang in the accompaniment of bagpipes. After 1912 (the liberation of the Rhodopes from Ottoman rule) Rozhen Festival lost its political importance acquired by coincidence in connection with the border line, but keeps the spirit of tradition, time and place, the role of center for people from the Middle Rhodopes .

Since then the folklore event writes its long history and has become a national folk-art forum throughout the years. The world-famous orchestra “100 Kaba-Bagpipes” has first performed on this “green stage”. On the same Rozhen field the star of famous Bulgarian folk singer Valya Balkanska has risen. Her song “Izleyal e Delyu Haydutin” is included in Voyager music collection, continuing its trip on the board of Voyager spacecraft.

The Rozhen Folklore Festival makes a review of the traditional occupation of Rhodope people – the farming. An exposition of domestic animals – ram lamb, goats, cows, horses, buffaloes – will take place during the fair. You may see and experience also bio food and drinks, horse ride attractions, culinary show, traditional crafts showing, folk games and fights.
This year the Rozhen Folklore Festival have a special spot for those clothed in national costumes, and as for the Bulgarian national flag – it will be even bigger. More than 10,000 performers from all over the country are expected to participate in this year’s folklore competition.
Welcome and enjoy this festival – magic of the Rhodope Mountains!