13.06.2013Tenth Roma Children Festival "Open Heart" – a rainbow of songs, dances, smiles and friendships ..... without end!


From 7th  to 9th of June in Veliko Tarnovo, CIEDT "Amalipe" in partnership with the Municipality of Veliko Tarnovo organized the tenth anniversary Roma Children Festival "Open Heart". Prepared from afar, anticipated eagerly by all participants, being an incentive for students – to attend school regularly, to improve their school grades, prepare to be selected for participation in the



The program started on  June 7th (Friday) at Art Gallery "Boris Denev." There were shown  mastery, crafts, orchestral and vocal skills of the moderators and volunteers of the community development centers in the country, Macedonia and Romania.

The greatest excitement was in Saturday and Sunday, when more than 1,400 children from over 100 schools and clubs in Bulgaria and Macedonia had to show u on the stage

Exactly at 1 pm  on the improvised stage in the park "Marno pole" - Veliko Tarnovo, after co-performance of the song "Dzhelem, dzhelem" (anthem of the Roma people  in the world) from the Macedonian participants from Miladinovtsi and representatives of the CDC – Byala Slatina, came out the  official guests of the festival who arrived specifically to greet the children, to immerse themselves in the atmosphere of talent, to get acquainted with their teachers, to see the attractive workshops in which with remarkable dexterity children were making  baskets, beautiful gifts made out of natural materials, drawing, modeling .... everything that can be displayed outdoors.

Proudly next to them were working Roma adults who were showing old crafts ; parents who made cakes, grits, juice of roses and other goodies.

Official guests at the opening were: HE Gyuro Katarina Vikyor - Ambassador of the Kingdom of Norway; N.Pr.Leshek Hensel - Ambassador of Poland, Daniel Panov - Mayor of Veliko Tarnovo, Boni Bonev - Chairman of the Bulgarian - Swiss Chamber of Commerce, Karina Fortuny - Trust for social achievement; Prof. Maria Baeva - Pedagogical Faculty of Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski "Stefan Stefanov, a representative of the City Council - Veliko Tarnovo.

Deyan Kolev, Chairman of Amalipe Center in his address to the children wished them success in school, good health, to be proud of their origin and to preserve the traditions and above all - to keep educating themselves, to be equal and worthy citizens of a united Europe .
CIEDT "Amalipe" received congratulatory letters from: the President of the Republic of Bulgaria - Rosen Plevneliev; HE Trasivulos Stamatopoulos - Ambassador of Greece Petar Stojanovic - Minister of Culture,  Mariana Georgieva, Minister of Youth and Sports.
The Mayor of Veliko Tarnovo Mr. Daniel Panov as the main host of the festival was pleased to note the fact that the anniversary edition of the festival is called "We create happiness" and is part of the calendar of the "Veliko Tarnovo - candidate for European Capital of Culture in 2019 "

 The program and concert started according to the prepared script. As it was expected, twice “for good luck” everything went as a water flow , which violated the performance procedure, but also brought more excitement for the participants. The most attractive was improvised Gangnam style dance of the beauties from "Hristo Smirnenski"high school – the town of Koynare - after the rain, barefoot, muddy but happy, with incredible emotion and rhythm they possessed the audience attention. During the second day of the organizers CIEDT "Amalipe" in perfect organization, made two parallel stages and all were given the opportunity to express themselves. Marno Pole Park was filled with colors, rhythms, songs and dances not only of Bulgarians, Roma and Turks, popular in Bulgaria, but also different styles associated with Roma people around the world - from the fiery rhythms of Spanish flamenco through  the Balkan music of Goran Bregovic to the moving melodies of Russian Gypsy romances. Meanwhile, smaller participants from schools in the villages Izgrev, Dibich Todor Ikonomovo and many others have shown that regardless of which ethnic groups we belong, we all are Bulgarian citizens and what unites us is always the love of Bulgarian folk music. A Bulgarian inspiration in the Macedonian dance "Pirin Sings" was the performance of the kids from school in  Todor Ikonomovo. A student from School "Vasil Levski" - the village of Karadjovo again managed to get out of the frame and showed their interpretation of “The Misunderstood Civilization.”
The community development centers established by Amalipe Center in 11 municipalities in Bulgaria, as well as their local clubs and the community ,moderators showed that they managed to become true leaders.
They presented old  preserved crafts which are practiced now only by the elderly people in the community, at the same time the young people showed that they are worthy successors, not only in the preservation of traditions and culture, but also good performance in school and out of the school.

Of course, this year the festival  has not passed without our Dzhalma and Cassandra, who entertained the participants, telling them the future, but showing them a specific Roma tradition - how to prepare Kaldarashko coffee.

Nearly 100 schools, groups of students to community centers and orphanages, local clubs, youth from different villages gathered in Park "Marno pole" in two days.

During the festival the amalipe Center employees and dozens of volunteers - students, did their best the participants  to feel pleasant, the  accommodation facilities to be perfect, bus drivers to have no problems.

The participants kept thanking ,congratulations were coming  from principals and teachers who, for one reason or another were unable to attend the festival this year. Children were adamant: next year will make twice as much effort to ensure participation in the eleventh edition of the Roma Children's Festival "Open Heart".

Tenth Roma Children Festival "Open Heart" was attended with great interest by citizens, the media, foreign tourists.
Awards received 18 children from the previously announced contest "Legacy of the masters' in categories:" Drawing "," Photography "and" Essay and story. "
Prizes were provided for "best - workshop", "best - group", "lifetime achievement" and many other incentive.
Maybe - because it's an anniversary!
Maybe - because they were preparing with love!
Maybe - because the students were expecting it for a long time and have been preparing for the entire school year!
Maybe - because it is our work, Roma festival that unites Bulgarians, Roma and Turks ..... all children in Bulgaria ... we are greeted: "It was the best festival ever!"

Until next time!

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