Sunday, February 10, 2013

Last days of chalga?

Whit Stillman, where are you now that post-Communist Bulgaria is partying;
Advertising and news, politics and entertainment, and even school textbooks, according to a 2012 study, reflect the pop-folk reality, which also dictates the standards of fashion and beauty, especially among adolescents.
"It's appealing because it displays glamour and a luxurious lifestyle that are out of reach for the vast majority of people in the unstable post-communist economies," Rada Elenkova, formerly project coordinator at the Bulgarian Gender Research Foundation, says.
Even people who do not usually listen to this music - like 25-year-old Elena Ivanova - enjoy drinking and dancing to chalga on a night out with friends.
At 03:00 on Saturday night, and despite the high prices, Sin City nightclub - famous for its pop-folk parties - is packed.
"I go to these places because there isn't much elsewhere to go," Ms Ivanova says. "I don't see myself in this music. It doesn't bother me and it doesn't bring me anything, but I know people my age who compare themselves to the singers."
The ethnomusicologist, [and chalga expert Ventsislav] Dimov, worries about this danger: "If you're born post-1990 and your life has been filled with [chalga's] dirty fairy tales, you may mistake it with reality."
Fairy tales can come true, it can happen to you, if you're young at heart.

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