Kulturni Centar Vršac

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OPENING OF ONE OF BALKANS' OLDEST FOLK FESTIVALS

„Wreath of Vršac“ was officially opened on Saturday, 11 July, with the warm welcome by Deputy Mayor of Vršac, Mr. Vladan Stajić, and fireworks. Festival director, Mrs Olga Petrov, reminded us of the symbolism behind the name of the festival, which invites to friendship, dancing, and singing. The opening was held in front of numerous guests: His Excellency, Minister Plenipotentiary in the Embassy of Mexico, Mr. Jose Hummberto Castro; guest of honour of the festival, representative of municipality of Yokosuka, Mr. Kenji Nakazawa; and the Third Secretary in the Embassy of Indonesia, Mr. Habadi Soawedo.

The honour to open the festival was given to ensemble “Laza Nančić” which made their fellow citizens of Vršac proud with their amazing performance. The audience was especially intrigued by “Le Contrados” from Italy and their attractive performance of flag-handling. The loudest round of applause was given to ensemble from Russia, while the ensemble from Mexico received standing ovations. The audience was also very pleased by the performance of, to them very close, Croatian folk dance. Special guests of the festival’s first night were lovely dancers from the group of the Embassy of Indonesia, “Bidadari”.

On Monday, 13th July, festival “Wreath of Vršac” was officially closed by Councilor responsible for culture in Vršac, Ms. Aleksandra Panić. She gave a warm speech, thanking all the participants for their performances during the festival.

After the performers from all the countries, to audience’s amazement, played and danced to the sounds of Kolo of Banat, festival’s director, Mrs. Olga Petrov, handed the presents to all participants from around the world and thanked them for their decision to visit Vršac, even if it meant traveling by bus for three days and changing several flights… but it was worth it, “Wreath of Vršac” has once again reached its goal of promoting culture and tradition not only from Serbia, but from people and nations from around the globe.

On the last night of the festival, the audience was delighted by the Russian surprise performance of traditional Serbian song “Tamo daleko”. The audience sang with them, giving them standing ovations which extended to their performance of dances of Cossacks from the Don region.

However, true Serbian folklore enthusiasts were especially delighted by the performance by our guests from Pančevo, ensemble “Stanko Paunović”, as well as the performance of dances from Banat region by the Romanian ensemble, and by the performance of ensemble from Croatia.

The audience was eager to see the performance by the group from USA, which entertained them with their act of cowboy dances!

After the official part of the festival, all participants were hosted by Culture Centre of Vršac at the party which lasted until late at night.

Almost all ensemble leaders thanked the organizers for their warm welcome and concluded that this festival was one of the best ones they have participated this year.

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