A unique performance! On the 16th of June 16, in Hall 3 of the National Palace of Culture the oldest classical Indian dance style – Kathakali was presented.

Thanks to the Embassy of the Republic of India in the Republic of Bulgaria, on the occasion of the 5th International Yoga Day, a UN holiday, the Bulgarian audience had an exceptional opportunity to get acquainted with this cultural phenomenon, which can rarely be seen even in India. The group of performers, led by Mr. Shri Rajashekharan Madhava Kurup emade a brilliant theatrical performance based on an Indian legend. It was applauded by officials, ambassadors, diplomats, intellectuals, representatives of the yoga communities in our country and curious citizens. After Sofia the performance was presented in Plovdiv, Pernik and Skopje.

Kathakali is a traditional dramatic dance art that originated in the 17th century in Kerala, South West India. It used to be performed outdoors in the moonlight until sunrise. Moments from the ancient Indian epics Mahabharata and Ramayana are used for its stories, which express the struggle between good and evil within man in the process of his self-awareness. Kathakali is performed by men who are trained in special schools. Their training begins at the age of 11 and lasts for a minimum of 5-6 years. The troupe usually consists of several dancers, an orchestra of four musicians, and two vocal performers telling the storyline. Kathakali performance, like all classical Indian dance arts, synthesizes music, vocal performance, choreography, sophisticated makeup, costumes and masks, pantomime and sign language. That's why performers are called actors, not dancers.

The 21st of June - International Yoga Day

Is celebrated for the fifth consecutive year by countries around the world. It is celebrated in Bulgaria as well. From the 15th to the 23rd of June, 43 settlements in our country: Sofia, Plovdiv, Stara Zagora, Burgas, Varna, Ruse, Veliko Turnovo and Pleven, a number of smaller towns and three villages, celebrated with their separate programs.

Once again the main events were held in the capital. Throughout the day on the 16th of June, the National Palace of Culture opened its doors to yoga knowledge. The official opening of the International Yoga Day in Hall 3 was done by H. E. Ms. Pooja Kapur, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of India to Bulgaria. The organizers offered a rich and varied program in each of the four halls of the palace. The best certified teachers, representatives of renowned schools of classical yoga, demonstrated practices, and those interested had the chance to practice, listen and observe. Scientists-practitioners gave lectures on various topics concerning the nature of yoga, specialized yoga practices for adults, children and pregnant women were also presented. The curious ones had the chance to also become familiar with the holistic science of Ayurvedic medicine.

In the lobby at special stands editions of various yoga schools, yoga books of major publishing houses, small souvenirs and yoga accessories were offered. There was also an opportunity for people to try Indian vegetarian, continental vegetarian and vegan food.

Photos: Diplomatic Spectrum