Kotor – Ancient Mediterranean town of Kotor located in one of the loveliest bays of the world Boka Kotorska, already for centuries lives for carnivals and “Flichering nerve of old and young waits sempiane, masked hours of Kotor for heart once must glow for all life, for all days”. For that reason these festivals must be experienced where is open entrance to all on common address “Come to festival”.
– So organizers of Kotor summer carnival NGO “Festa” in recognizable style invites guests to a kind of tourist cultural manifestation that already for five years takes place in organization of this association at Kotor.
This association is organizer also of winter carnival that takes place in February.
Tradition of winter carnival is much older and has its roots from time of Renaissance. Town of Kotor is tied with many economic cultural ties with Italian, Greek, Levant and Spanish towns form early times inherited tradition on popular entertainments that took place at squares and streets. In Kotor documents since the 14th century there are term “Korizma” that is connected to term “Mesopust” and carnival festivities in connection with fierce Easter feast. At improvised stages at city squares guests were bands of foreign and domestic entertainers, players, singers, actors in performing typical Medieval production, fairy tales and legends. The culmination of year festivities represented parade of masks mostly according Italian pattern with central figure of carnival type “Krnjo” who incorporated and accented all evils and misfortunes that bothered citizens during year gone by. During the 19th century all the way to the First World War according writing of little city chronicle writer maestro Romeo Fiorelia, were held regular carnival festivities with parade of masks, Krnjo and his widow that cried for him, judges, prosecutors and advocate. In the period between two world wars carnival festivities started gradually to obtain satiric – political character and during war between Italy and Abisinia in 1937 members of carnivals masked as blacks from city suburb Muo attacked and conquered Kotor. Tradition of carnival festivities stopped in period of WWII and continued at start of 60’s and last till today.
NGO “Festa” was founded in 1999 with aiming of respecting and continuation of carnival tradition in Boka Kotorska. In association work numerous enthusiast transferring tradition of carnival from generation to generation. During last years with quality of work and organizing abilities “Festa” turned attention of wider Montenegrin cultural audience but also wider and proved the reason for its existing and work.
So by this association, continuing the rich tradition, town of Kotor as leader of carnival festivities in Montenegro became in 2001 full member of Fund of European Carnival Cities (FECC) and as such Kotor carnival became part of family of European carnival cities.
In last year summer Kotor carnival was proclaimed for the best manifestation in Montenegro and NGO “Festa” was awarded of last year municipal award 21st November.
Parade of fancy and original masks, fireworks and a kind of party under masks at squares of Old town until down makes summer carnival unique with presence of over 30000 people. For number of participants and visitors it is the largest summer carnival in the region.
In Kotor there are some 30 carnival groups with 10 to 50 members and there are also smaller carnival groups with several members as well as solo that mask themselves. To them because courage that go to carnival alone is shown special honor and always go first in carnival parade and carry flag of Kotor carnival.
This year carnival will be from July 31, to August 5
This year fifth summer Kotor carnival will take place from July 31, to August 5.
President of “Festa” Vasilije Bajrovic, says that “preparations are in fierce continuation and that largest part of job is done”.
-We do all to prove last year award and proclaiming Kotor carnival for the best manifestation in Montenegro.
During carnival days will be held masked balls, fish evenings, various festivities, concerts. Program will not any longer be only in Old town but in other places in our bay Prcanj, Perast, Risan. Final of summer carnival is on August 5, with large carnival parade on the main town street. Beside carnival groups from Montenegro there are announced groups from Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, Italy and Germany – said Bajrovic.
He said that he expects that as last year to Kotor carnival attend president of FECC Henry F. van der Kron as also large number of managing board of that fund.
Summer Kotor carnival will take place under high auspices of Ministry of tourism, municipality of Kotor, Tourist organization of Montenegro and Tourist organization of Kotor.