Famous Rose Harvest Festival Begins in Bulgaria
The worldwide famous harvest has begun Saturday in the 'valley of the roses' close to Kazanlak in central Bulgaria.
From May 19 to June 24, the town Kazanlak will host the 2012 Rose Festival. The program each week is dedicated to the elements of nature – fire, water, air, and earth, and to the Bulgarian rose.
It opens with a performance dedicated to the author of the first Bulgarian opera, Emanuil Manolov. The music includes elements from Bulgarian classics in modern interpretations, and has been written especially for the opera theater in Kazanlak.
The festival will further feature Bulgarian traditions and those of the Rose Valley, the ballet "Nestinarka" (Fire Dancer), a number of other concerts – from ethno to jazz and chamber music, a carnival, flash mob, workshops, demonstrations, food and wine tasting, contests and others.
Bulgaria is one of the biggest producers of rose oil in the world. The reason for this is hidden in the high qualities of the Bulgarian Kazanluk rose ("Kazanlashka roza"), a special type, that was cultivated in the region after many years of development. The Bulgarian roses come from the so called Damascena rose.
A large percentage of the harvested roses are used for the production of rose oil - "the liquid gold" of Bulgaria. Rose oil is used mainly for the making of perfumes, chocolates, liqueur and jam - it is 3 times more expensive than real gold. One kilogram of rose oil is extracted from roughly 3000 kg of roses.
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