CENTRIPHERY IN VARSHETS, BULGARIA
PLEASE, SAY YES!
SOUND(e)SCAPE of Varshets!
Do you love Varshets?
How does Varshets love you back?
Duration: 24 min.
Place: Bansko Casino
Time: 2nd Sep., 2021 // 20:30
“Please, say Yes” is a creation within the Centriphery collaborative platform, produced by New Culture Foundation and the Goat Milk Festival 2021., representing the work of four international artists – Rayna Teneva (BG), Branka Cvjetičanin (HR), Kalin Serapionov (BG), Fred Nevché (FR).
With participation of Georgi Naydenov, Vanya Petrova, Marin, Alexander Kolev, Tzveti, Danay, Pepi, Dimitar, and many others. Thank you!
The relationship with the city is personal. It is always the pedestrian viewpoint, and it is happening each time we step out into the public space. We are experiencing space and time, architecture, urbanism in correlation to collective past and present, and the most abstract of all, the atmosphere. We make our daily choreographies and through time they are becoming routines shaping our life. Cities are mirroring us in so many ways but sometimes places are stuck in time without having clear vision what future might be.
The promise to the city of Varshets is to care, cherish and love for better for worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, to love, cherish, and to obey, till death us do part, according to all Knowledge and Love ordinance. The new myth of Varshets is about to rise envisioning the magical element of the water.
“Please, say Yes” and dive into the SOUND(e)SCAPE of Varshets!
SOUND(e)SCAPE of Varshets! – English Transcript
Houses from the 50’s,
Endless central alley,
Elegantly shaped windows,
All those lines running away.
In the heat of the summer,
Your soft, pale light,
Recalls the beautiful years
Of your thermal past.
Royal Bansko Casino,
Canteen under the veranda,
I hear the roll of the water,
From the “Boulevarda”.
Under the illuminations,
Perfume of iced nougats,
Smell of fried food,
And grilled “kefteh”.
How many times have you left your heart on the “Republika”?
Oh how much, believe me, I would like to see you in my arms again.
We used to meet,
In the evening at the Ring Café,
I am sad, I confess,
To know that it is closed.
The shadow draws zebra mark,
On my skin in the park,
I know the temperature,
Love “so deep so dark”.
Invitation to travel,
To come back to see you again,
Like reading an ageless poem,
By Stanchev Latchezar.
Please, Varshets, please,
Heal your wounds,
Do you let ruins and breakage?
Sweep away the future?
Everyday there are stories…everyday people fall into the holes. Especially over there. The other day I got really scared, there was one guy, a bit chubby – he fell directly on his face. On his eyes he crushed. Overall everything is made just like this…
Georgi: He did put it right and good but it got broken.
Vanya: Georgi! This could be repaired; it takes one hour of work. Just a new top layer could be put over.
Georgi: It could, yes. But you are not going to go to Italy and instead you would take a bucket and fix it yourself.
The Bird Man
He is there every day. He is sitting on the corner of the square which is extremely busy spot. The fountain is right next to him. There is an ATM machine behind his back, one of the two city’s ATM’s. He sits right next to the busiest street vendor who is selling a hot corn with butter.
At that corner, every morning, the Bird Man setting up his work/living equipment for all-day urban camping. He has a scale for accurate measurement, a blind person stick, an umbrella, a chair and a large cardboard box on a small stroller. That’s all he has. It seems enough for his being. The Bird-Man surrounded himself with objects that give him purpose. Objects that are visible to others, to us who are passing by. Objects that justify his sitting all day on the edge of the square opposite the fountain.
The most obvious object which is giving him a purpose is the scale for accurate measurement. He offered the scale to everyone as an opportunity for conversation. For just a few coins anyone can accurately measure their weight. They say, that’s how it’s done here. People on the street offer a weight measurement service. It was never noticed that anyone stepped on his scale for an accurate measurement. The first neighbour selling corn with butter slipped away and retreated from the square to the nearby street, distancing their business from the less reputable business of weight measuring.
On such a frequent square, where everyone meets at least once a day the Bird Man reminds invisible.
Only sometimes, and for no ordinary reason, he decides to make a melody sound. In those moments he takes the Ocarina of Time, out of his deep right pocket. Ocarina of Time has the shape of a bird’s head, but if you look more into the detail it also has the shape of a deadly weapon from the distant future or the past. Anyone who knows this wind instrument knows that the secret frequency in a musical formula is an extremely guarded secret which gives an exceptional power.
And that is where the unreal merges with the real. People like Bird Man have their extremely important purpose and the reason why they decided to stay somewhere.
Their purpose is always related to balancing energies. You can see that in small movements when a child cries, he takes out Ocarina of Time and softens the cry with specially chosen notes. Or when the stray city dogs start barking around the square, he separates the dogs again with the sound of the Ocarina. The more aggressive the sound is, like turbo-folk from a nearby cafe, the thinner, quieter and softer is the music of Ocarina. Although a miracle happens, rarely does anyone notice it at all.
Perhaps less well known is that people like Birdman learned melodies from ancient teachers originated from the time of the kingdom of Hyrula, the site of all the Legends of Zelda.
The kingdom of Hyrula – of diverse topography and diverse tribes – was full of stories that are transformed into melodies through Ocarina of Time. The talented ones could turn melodies back into stories.
The Bird Man, as a talented reader of melodies, received the Ocarina of Time. That once-assigned task sealed him in his body and his role.
That will remain until the moment he becomes visible, and his melodies audible. When this happens he will return to the Temple of Time freed from his noble duty. If you haven’t noticed by now the Bird Man’s windy melodies which are talking about the water, this is maybe your last chance. The sound of Ocarina of Time is about to play his redemption song.
The story of Marin
Let me remember where we were back then, I think in a town for their festival…I am passing a crossroad and falling exactly in the middle of the traffic. She came to me to guard me. First she had a look around, where to drag me to. I told her “Go”, and she pulled me for the clothes and dragged me out of the crossroad on the sidewalk. She sniffed me and started barking. She did not let anyone come near me – not even the police. Until the ambulance has arrived. The ambulance came, the doctor came around me, she sniffed him and let him come closer. She barked one more time. They put me inside the ambulance, she jumped in too.
Shoes for Squeezing pain
There is no special sound here, but there is one that centres the city. The “Beton brut” styled fountain is the sound which centres the city. From that sound other sounds are gathering and spreading.
At times when the fountain is working and spreads its sounds through the space it is easy to navigate through the city. Moving away or getting closer it makes the sounds louder or quieter. Listening to the city requires a different way of thinking. As soon as we manage to move from the vision to hearing we see what we have not heard so far.
The sound of the city revealed her to us.
Quite by accident, her footsteps and creaking shoes entered the space of sound. She walked fast and persistently. Sometimes she would stop to take something out of her bag.
Her steps were regular in exact rhythm despite that pedestrian pavement full of potholes. Small short stubbing steps walking with persistence. Stuttering is heard but the line of walking is straight. They say, these sidewalks have not been renovated for 20 years or more.
We walked in parallel for a while. I stalked the sound of her shoes. It was almost impossible not to hear the creaking. I’m sure she decided to wear sound-shoes just for this day and for particular occasion. Somehow I didn’t want to believe that these might be the only comfortable shoes she has. The straps cut into the flash made their mark already. It seems there is no pain at all. These are her most comfortable shoes.
She marched by the fruit store, then passed the vegetable store, another grocery store. She passed a group of load Roma women standing in the middle of the path. It was clear that she had no intention of stopping or even changing her direction. They moved aside. Short tiny steps were driving into concrete and holding her creaking shoes firmly to the ground.
The shoes and herself were progressing somewhere, towards a goal known only to her. At some point she stopped. The creaking stopped. What a manoeuvre! A quick sudden stop. She dug through her bag again and pulled out her cell phone.
She had a conversation standing in the middle of the pavement. Her firm statue in those shoes were holding the balance grounding her into the pavement. She knows these mighty holes. She knows this city. Suddenly again she moved on, in the same speed, the same size of the steps, the same direction.
At one point, right next to her on the left a large rumble like an explosion produced a thick cloud of dust. Another, large in size “Beton brut” building, was demolished by excavator. For a moment that was a dominant sound which covered all other sounds. Her footsteps without any hesitation continued to creak through the dusty cloud. As if nothing, nothing at all had happened. As if that external earthquake could no longer shake anything in her. She walked on. There was only one “tact”. She stepped off the sidewalk onto the road and disappeared into a cloud of dust.
The Perfect Candidate – Mr. Alexander Kolev
The colour of Varshets is not just one. There are at least four, for each season. My house is facing the mountain directly, so there are often much more than 4 colours. Sometimes the green is blending into violet. There are at least 10 different nuances of the white snow. If you count the sky above the mountain, changing its colour constantly. In the end, Varshtets is like a Van Gauge painting, while he is on hallucinogens.
Unfortunately, the sound of Varshets has not been heard recently. I was raised here and the memory of streets full of kids are only memories today. But I do hope to hear more and more the voices of young people, tourists that come here for sport and an active holiday…
Like many other places in Bulgaria and especially the North-west, here too it does smell like a rotten administration. From the bottom to the top. Which unfortunately does not allow the town to develop according to its resources.
In the heart of the mountains,
in the heart of the city,
by the sea,
in the middle of the sea,
lost in the desert,
on a lake,
near a spring,
or a virgin forest,
there are stains,
there are smells.
There are rains better than others,
there are wounds harder than others,
suns that burn more than others,
yes, you know that.
I have a strange taste in my mouth,
I was told it was nothing,
a funny smell in your mouth,
on the skin,
I was told,
a new colour on the skin too,
I was told,
I heard a loud noise,
I heard like a rain,
it was raining,
Is it a thunderstorm?
Like an explosion,
like a blast,
but that’s not it,
They tell me it’s nothing!
What is it daddy?
Keep on playing kids,
keep on playing,
What is it daddy?
The houses look empty,
This is not true,
there are a lot of people inside,
the walls are tired,
the roofs are crumbling.
I tell you to smile for the photo,
the landscape is beautiful and sumptuous,
but the house just collapsed, right?
This is not true,
I tell you to smile,
it’s not that,
I will take the picture,
it does not fit,
it does not fit into the frame,
hug you all,
for the photo, everyone,
No pinched smile, please,
pinch me if it’s not true.
Smile it’s for the photo,
like this you are more beautiful,
C’mon, let me read your future.
7th vow: Are you going to stay in Varshets forever?
Yes, yes, yes.
Because there is mineral water here.