Roses of Bulgaria

May 13th, 2023

On Saturday May 13th, 2023, Ensemble Zornitza Vancouver presented their first ever concert, Roses of Bulgaria. The Bulgarian Folk Dance concert took place at Inlet theatre in Port Moody and showcased a variety of different dance groups from all over North America—both Bulgarian dance groups as well as international folk-dance groups. The program was composed of a beautiful blend of dance, joy, and shared traditions. The Concert was a wonderful medium for forming connections amongst a group of individuals who all share an undeniable love for the art of dance. The event was open to anyone and everyone who wanted to come and have a glimpse at the wonders and magic of Bulgarian folklore, and culture.

The concert’s name, Roses of Bulgaria, is an homage to the iconic and symbolic Bulgarian rose. The rose has been a symbol of Bulgaria for centuries, as the Rose Valley is home to the some of the highest quality rose plantations and rose-oil facilities. It is known as Bulgaria’s national symbol of pride, and it is the inspiration behind many festivals and cultural engagements. It stands for the power of nature, and livelihood.

Alongside Vancouver’s very own Ensemble Zornitza youth group, Zornitza Adults, and Kitka, the stage was lit up by Seattle Cheta from Seattle, Ensemble Zornitsa from Montréal, Radost from Seattle, and Hopa Trop from Seattle. The dances performed were so widely dispersed between the different regions of Bulgaria, that the entirety of the show felt like a journey: a journey through time, just as much as a journey through timeless folklore. The costumes worn throughout the night—while some similar—were never not entirely unique. Some patterns were delicately hand stitched, others were gleaming and adorned with an array of gold or silver coins.

Zornitza Vancouver hopes to continue hosting yearly concerts in celebration of Bulgaria’s rich and profound culture.

Autor: Emma Stoyanova