How have the Kazakhs abroad celebrated Nauryz?
In Persian, the word Nowruz means “New day”. Nowruz is one of the most ancient holidays on the earth, that is celebrated by many people as a holiday of spring and renewal of nature.
In 2009, Nowruz was included in the UNESCO list as an intangible cultural heritage of humankind. The UN General Assembly has declared the 21st of March as the International Day of Nowruz.
Since the ancient times, Kazakhstan has its own tradition of celebrating the New Year. This time is called “Time to grow the leaves”. When a sunny spring comes, and the spring day and night became equal on the 21st of March and Nauryz holiday is celebrated, which symbolizes the renewal of nature.
From the ancient times, Nauryz in Kazakhstan symbolizes the fertility, friendship and love. On this day, people dress nicely, visit relatives and friends and express the sincere wishes to each other. This holiday is considered as a harbinger of the new life. In Kazakhstan, people sing and dance, as well as take part in the national games and festive walks.
It has become a tradition to put “Nauryz Kozhe” for the festive table. There is a belief that if Kazakhs eat this food on Nauryz, then this year will be fruitful for them. “Nauryz Kozhe” is a nutritious soup made from seven flavors: meat, water, flour, butter, millet (can be replaced with rice or corn), salt and milk. Each component of food represents the seven principles of life: growth, luck, happiness, wealth, health, wisdom and heavenly protection. Nauryz is rich for the symbols. Therefore, the number of seven different flavors in “Nauryz kozhe” is very important in the celebration of holiday. Then, it is poured into seven bowls and placed in front of the seven eldest people. Each one of them must invite the seven guests to his house, as well as visiting the seven guests.
This wonderful spring holiday is celebrated by the Kazakhs living abroad every year. Due to the pandemic, the celebration of Nauryz on a large scale has been suspended for the second year in a row. However, despite the difficult situation around the world, the compatriots celebrated Nauryz in a small environment and nature.
The 22nd of March is “International Nauryz Day” in Omsk city of the Russian Federation. The Chairman of the Board of the Omsk regional public organization Kuanysh Zholdasbekuly Eleutaev congratulated the audience on the main street named after the great educator Shokan Valikhanov.
Kazakh families prepared the delicious meals at home and the holiday was greeted with a table setting. Nauryz is celebrated in the “100 high public schools” in Omsk every year. Young dancers of the dance theater “Turan” delighted all the guests with their performances.
On March 22, Omsk NGOs held a charity event “BIZ BIRGEMIZ” on behalf of the Turkic and Iranian peoples for the doctors who are at the forefront of the fight against COVID-19 (EMERCOM-4 and EMERCOM-10). He invited the doctors from Omsk and organized a concert.
In the United States, our compatriots have laid a rich table at the park, in Tampa, Florida and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The national games were played, songs were sung, national dances were performed during the Nauryz holiday.
Nauryz holiday was celebrated in Turkey as well. The pearls of Antalya were made by the Association of the People of Kazakhstan, Turkey and Eurasia. The Nauryz festival continues its celebrations until today, especially in the Republic of Turkey, Anatolia and the Balkans. A solemn event opened with a congratulatory message. The feelings of friendship, brotherhood and unity between the peoples are especially noteworthy. The President of the Association of Friendship and Peoples of Kazakhstan, Turkey and Eurasia Akmaral Ryspay called on not only Kazakhstani Turks, but the whole Turkic world in order to celebrate the holiday together. In connection with the Nauryz festival, the traditional dances, songs, cultural events and national dishes were presented to the visitors.
On March 21, a group of representatives of the Kazakh diaspora celebrated Nauryz at the General Consulate of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Gorgan on the initiative of General Consul Aitzhan Aidashev. As part of the event, several active compatriots in the field of art and culture received the letters of appreciation from the Ministry of Culture of Kazakhstan and the Embassy of Kazakhstan in Iran. The guests watched a small concert of young artists and tasted the table.
On the 27th of March, Nauryz holiday was celebrated in the Russian capital under the leadership of Polat Zhamalov, the head of the Kazakh Diaspora Foundation in Moscow, in the hotel and restaurant complex “Vyazemgrad”. As part of the holiday, the guests enjoyed the souvenirs, handicrafts, a fair of national dishes, a concert program, a program of sports game (Kazakh wrestling, tug of war, sack race, asyk shooting). A yurt was built and a six-story building was built as well. A festive table was laid and folk songs were performed there.
Nauryz holiday was celebrated with great enthusiasm in Sol-Iletsk city of Orenburg region. The Association of Orenburg Kazakhs has prepared an exhibition of handicrafts and a large-scale concert program for the event. The new books were also presented there. Kazakh national traditions, dances and games were interesting to present the folk traditions and culture not only of the Kazakhs, but also of the people of Orenburg region.
Moscow has been celebrating Navruz for more than 10 years. Navruz (Persian New Year) is one of the oldest holidays celebrated in different countries, as well as in some regions of Russia. For example, the republics of Tatarstan and Bashkortostan. The holiday is celebrated in the Russian capital in order to strengthen interethnic relations. This year, Navruz was celebrated in Moscow for the 15th time, but for the first time due to restrictions of the coronavirus. The event has been broadcasted live on the official website of Navruz, YouTube and social networks.
In Samara region, Nowruz is traditionally celebrated by Kazakhs, Uzbeks, Azerbaijanis, Kyrgyz, Tajiks, Turkmens and other people. Nauryz is a day celebrated by many Asian nations. On March 27, the House of Friendship of Peoples, with the support of the Samara city administration, held the international holiday “Nowruz” in the House of Culture, called “Dawn” in Samara. An event was also attended by national public organizations of Samara city and Samara region, the President of the Cultural Center “Samara Kazakhs” Salauat Askaruly Sultanov. The event was also organized by other public organizations of various national and cultural centers of Asia.
The festive event began with an exhibition of arts and crafts, music of national musical instruments and a festive dance. Not only the participants of the concert program, but also the audience took part in the dance. After the exhibition, the festive concert was very cheerful for the audience.
The event ended with the awarding of activists of national and cultural public organizations and artists of the concert program for the organization, conduct and participation in the international holiday “Nowruz”. These events contribute to the strengthening of interethnic and interfaith harmony in a multinational country. It acquaints with the peculiarities and national culture of the people, has a positive effect on the expression of talents among the younger generation.
Tazhibekova Gulsim Nurlybekkyzy
A consultant of the department
of supporting the compatriots abroad