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    Posted May 3, 2014 by
    NYC, New York
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Impact Your World

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    The birth of "The Rose Valley" project or how the two Bulgarian natives in America collaborate with the
    Bulgarian diaspora in NYC...

    In 2012, "Roots and Origins" project, funded by the Manhattan Community Arts Fund, brought together classical Bulgarian literature, ethnography, music and dance. The exhibition of household objects from Bulgarian villages represented the time when the short story "The Windmill", by classical writer Elin Pelin, was written. A community workshop explored rituals, described in the short story, while the final performance brought the story to life, along with some of the exhibits as stage designs and props. The house of 92streetY during the final performance on Dec 1st, 2012 was full with long wait list.
    From the sucess of the "Windmill" project came the idea for "The Rose Valley" project today. The new multi-disciplinary project will introduce the American public and re-introduce the Bulgarian community in Manhattan to the beauty of the traditional dances, costumes, songs and music. This project's goals are to show the vibrance and the dynamic of the Bulgarian dance, songs and music by staging performances inspired by the Rose Valley in Bulgaria - a place of stunning natural beauty. The audience will enjoy performances by GORANA DANCE folk dance ensemble, by the Bulgarian singer Vlada Tomova and "Yasna Voices" folk choir, by students from the biggest teen folk dance ensemble in the U.S. - "Gorana Jr" - "Hristo Botev" Bulgarian School in New York, and other guests.

    "The Rose Valley" project is the way of building upon, expanding our previous work and making the performance available to a larger audience in a professional setting and open it to a larger audience interested in expanding their cross-cultural ties.

    Elissaveta Iordanova, the creative director of the project, is a dance artist and a choreographer with professional experience and in-depth knowledge of Bulgarian folkloric heritage. She is the artistic director of GORANA DANCE folk dance ensemmle and "Gorana Jr." -"Hristo Botev" Bulgarian School in New York - uniting several generations of Bulgarian and American dancers around the captivating power of traditional folklore music and dance.

    Polya Brandoff, the project manager, is a teacher of Bulgarian language and literature, and a Ph.D. Candidate in Socio-cultural anthropology. She studies present day Bulgarian national identity among the youth, as it is refracted through the prism of traditional practices and current socio-political discourses.

    Each in their own way, hold a passion for exploring the new meanings and relevance of traditional practices in our contemporary world - here and now - thousands of miles away from their birth homeland. On a professional level, they look for interdisciplinary links between music and literature, between rhythm and narrative; on a personal level, they both see as a vital mission to share the artistic expression of our motherland with their new home; to help young Bulgarians build a connection to their parents' roots; to link closer the Bulgarian and the American community through the power of art.

    June 7th at 8pm
    Goldman-Sonnenfeldt Family Auditorium, Jewish Community Center In Manhattan 334 Amsterdam Avenue, NY
    tickets at:

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