By Laman Ismayilova
After 29 years, Khari Bulbul Music Festival once again welcomes talented musicians in Shusha, known as Azerbaijan`s cultural capital.
The spectacular event is being held for the first time since the liberation of Shusha from the Armenian occupation.
President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva, their daughters Leyla Aliyeva and Arzu Aliyeva attended the festival.
The festival brought together music groups of different nations living in Azerbaijan on Jydyr Plain. The concert featured a program of folk and classical music, which left no one indifferent.
Khari Bulbul Music Festival began from the performance of young khanende (mugham singer) Kanan Bayramli. Bayati Shiraz mugham was performed at the concert.
Khari Bulbul music festival used to be held in Shusha every year before the city’s occupation by Armenian forces in 1992. The festival has been resumed after Shusha’s liberation on November 8, 2020.
The large-scale event gets its name from the flower Khari Bulbul which grows only in Shusha.
This flower has a unique appearance which makes it look like a nightingale or bulbul in Azerbaijani.
The word "Khari" means "thorny". Two petals of the flower resemble wings, while another one looks like a bird's head. Many legends, poems and songs are associated with this beautiful flower.
The festival was held for the first time in 1989, bringing together musicians from Japan, the USA, Turkey, Germany, Israel, Italy, Spain and other countries.
The opening ceremony took place at the stadium in Aghdam. The gala event featured spectacular concerts and performances in Jydyr Duzu, Isa Bulag spring as well as the streets and squares of Shusha city. Scientific and theoretical discussions were held as part of the event.
The festival's guests also visited the sights of Karabakh, beautiful nature surrounded by amazing mountains, participated in various events, accompanied by performances of musical and dance ensembles.
The festival's closing ceremony took place in Agdam, near the spring garden of the poetess Khurshidbanu Natavan, called "Bouquet of Khari Bulbul". The concert programs were also held in Agjabadi, Barda and Baku.
The 4th Khari Bulbul Music Festival was supposed to gather musicians from more than 30 countries.
However, the city was captured by Armenia on May 8, 1992. Shusha was liberated by the Azerbaijani Armed Forces on November 8, 2020.