MIA News

Government declares Vevchani Carnival intangible cultural heritage

Skopje, 27 February 2024 (MIA) – At a session on Tuesday, the Government declared the Vevchani Carnival a cultural heritage of special importance, subcategory of exceptional importance, the Ministry of Culture said in a press release.

This decision enables the preservation and affirmation of the male procession as part of a masked winter ritual, which has been maintained and is practiced as an authentic and integral form by the local community in Vevchani Municipality.

As stated in the decision, according to its characteristics “Ritual processions with masks (carnival) – Masked men from Vevchani” are distinguished by their authenticity and preservation of the masks, folk dance, beliefs and rituals.

The Masked men from Vevchani were granted a first level protection with several other protection measures. Supporting and encouraging the wearers of authentic masks ensures the sustainability of the ancient event, knowledge of mask making and skill to play the traditional musical instruments that are part of the procession. It is of particular importance that the tradition of one of the oldest carnivals in the world also includes younger generations and is preserved as a cultural heritage.

The decision to declare the Vevchani Carnival a cultural heritage of special importance, subcategory of exceptional importance, provides its permanent protection and categorization in accordance with the law on protection of cultural heritage, reads the press release.