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Balkan Festival of Academic Youth
Balkan Festival of Academic Youth

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Balkan Festival of Academic Youth
12 June 2007 - Varna

The city of Varna was the kind host of the First Balkan Folk Student Festival from June 8th – 10th 2007.

The idea for the festival was born last year when the Students’ Councils of five universities from Varna decided to organize a local folk competition. This idea developed into creating a bigger festival which would give groups from all over the Balkans the chance to participate. The criteria was the wish of the local groups to participate and the only condition was that all those taking part were students of the universities their groups were going to represent.

And thus the First Balkan Folk Student Festival became a place where young people from all over the Balkans could meet each other and share their experiences… A place that gave the opportunity for these young people to meet and understand different cultural practices, to break the prejudices and to overcome the stereotypes…

The idea of the students received support from the Municipality of Varna (represented by its mayor Kiril Yordanov and The Youth Activities and Sport Unit) and a lot of sponsors. And everyone was waiting for July 8th when the raising of the 3 flags (that of Bulgaria, that of the European Union and that of the festival) was the official symbol of the beginning of the festival.

The participants in the festival were the following: KUD “Slavia” – Saraevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina; Center for Intercultural Dialogue – Kumanovo, Macedonia; Kultural Association “Stefanos Kariatidis”, Neavisa, Greece. The Bulgarian participants were representing the Technical University – Sofia; Technical University – Varna; Varna Free University “Chernorizets Hrabar”; University of Economics – Varna; Medical University – Varna.

Also participating were dancers from Zornitsa students’ ensemble, Sofia. The twenty five performers presented to the audience in Varna “Mixed Dance from Thrace”, “Shoppian Suite”, “Women’s Shoppian dance”, “Men’s Dance from Thrace”. The last evening the festival closed with “Zevzetsi”, presented by Zornitsa as well.

Varna received the guests and the participants in the festival with it’s cloudless sky, shining sun and warm sea breeze. The rich colours in the costumes, fast rhythms, nice compositions and charming smiles of the participants added additional fascination to this city during the three days of the festival.

Zornitsa Folk Ensemble

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Slavka Karakusheva

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