Home From tradition to transition

From tradition to transition

Macedonia is a land of carnivals. Traditionally, they are held during winter time, in the New Year’s period, but also in spring and they are characteristic for several regions in the country. Each carnival has its own feature, colorfulness and different symbolism. The cheerful and masked faces in Bitola region are called “babari”, in Ohrid region-“vasilicari”, in Skopje and Kavadarci regions-“dzamalari”.

For those who would like to dive into the roots of the Macedonian tradition, a real rarity is to attend the “Vevcani carnival”. According to the locals, it has been held in continuity for hundreads of years (there is no precise data), from the establishment of the village itself, and since 1993 the “Vevcani carnival” is a member of the World Carnival Federation. For the 48 hours, during the carnival customs, the whole area around Vevcani transforms into a huge theater, where on an open stage you can see the most creative and most mystical masks.

You wander how the carnival began? The legend says that a boy, who was the most beautiful boy in Vevacani, before going abroad to work, has been engaged with the most beautiful girl in the village. However, while working abroad, the boy fell from a tall building and suffered severe scars on his face. In winter, when his friends returned to Vevcani, he asked them to hide their faces with masks, so that his fiancé could easier get used to his scared face. This was the origin of the carnival in Vevcani, village located in the foot of the mountain Jablanica.