Festival “Talent has no age” and international meeting in Ruse and Brashlen, Bulgaria

Festival “Talent has no age” and international meeting in Ruse and Brashlen, Bulgaria

The Union of Pensioners’2004 – Ruse Region (UP) invited partners from Galati and Bucharest (Romania) and Ulm (Germany) to an international meeting in the frame of the 22nd festival of amateur art Talent has no age which took place on the 20th and the 21st of October 2018 in Ruse and included the best artistic groups of elderly performers, as well as individual performances in all genres of art (songs, dances, speech, music). The international guests of the festival admired the talents of 33 groups and 15 individual performances. By an international workshop in the guest house of community of Slivo Pole in Brashlen they had the opportunity to speak about their experiences made in Bulgaria, Romania and Germany in the context of the projects Bread connects and ODDA and to develop new ideas for the future cooperation.

Some of the main goals of the Union of Pensioners’2004 – Ruse Region (UP) are:

– to establish and to develop international contacts with other pensioners’ organizations in the Danube Region;

– to transfer knowledge and experience about European cultural intangible heritage in Danube countries;

– to develop and foster European identity.

To reach these goals, on the 20th and 21st of October 2018, the Union of Pensioners organized the 22nd traditional festival of amateur art Talent has no age, which had expanded its borders. Very good amateur choirs, dance ensembles, singers, story tellers from local villages, artistic groups of elderly people from other cities – Sofia, Nessebar, Svishtov a.o., but also friends from Giurgiu and Bucharest (Romania), were participating.

Furthermore, the Union of Pensioners and the Mayor of Slivo Pole invited representatives of the Union of pensioners / non-governmental organizations of elderly people to an international seminary in Brashlen to establish new contacts, to plan joint activities and to participate in the festival. Seven guests were from the towns of Galati (Pensioners’ Club and University of the Third Age from Galati), three from the Bulgarian and Ukraine NGOs from Bucharest and five Danube Networkers from (Germany).

The Union of Pensioners covered the food costs and the Municipality of Slivo Pole the participants’ accommodation costs. Travel costs were covered by the participants themselves. Unfortunately, the invited groups from Tvarditsa, Taraklia (Moldova) and Bolgrad, Ukraine had been unable to come as they had not the money needed for travel.


Many of the participants from Bulgaria, Romania and Germany had no common language but as usual, those who were able to communicate in English or in another language acted as volunteer translators making communication possible. A new experience for the participants was the use of the Microsoft google translator using a mobile phone or tablet, enabling small conversations in German-Bulgarian or German-Romanian. Also the language skill materials developed in the frame of the ODDA project has been improved. For the development of the ODDA materials this meeting was very fruitful.

Bread connects- this project was visible during the whole stay in the House of Culture by a photo exhibition of bread baking actions in the district Ruse, furthermore all participants of the seminary prepared typical breads and sweets to taste.

Programme of the international seminary

19 October afternoon:

  • arriving in Brashlen
  • accommodation in the community house of Slivo Pole in the village Brashlen (30 km distant from the town of Ruse)
  • presenting the groups
  • 20:00 welcome dinner, opening of the international seminary by the President of the Pensioners Club District Ruse


20 October

  • 08:00 Breakfast
  • 09:00 Transfer to the Cultural house of Ruse in Ruse Center.
  • 00 – 15.00 Participation of the guests in the traditional festival of amateur art Talent has no age; participation of many VIP guests


  • Photo exhibition of international projects for pensioners from the Municipality of Slivo Pole, annual competition – exhibition The garden of my home
  • 00: Visit of the town Ruse
  • 18:00 Transfer to Brashlen
  • 19:00 Workshop ODDA, international ILEU e.V. project, good practice for communication with participants from Bulgaria, Romania and Germany
  • 20:30 Meeting of the Union of pensioners from Danube countries
  • dinner


21 October

  • 08:30 Breakfast
  • 10:00 Transfer Cultural house of Ruse, closing ceremony of the Festival, winners ceremony, certificates
  • 13:00 Tour to the Rock Monastery in Basarbovo, Tour to the Rock Church under UNESCO, Ivanovo
  • 17:00 Transfer to Ruse
  • 18:00-19:30 Work meeting project ODDA and Bread connects
  • 20:00 International farewell party in Brashlen with representatives of the
  • Pensioners Club and the community of Slivo Pole and Brashlen


22 October

  • breakfast
  • Meeting at German language School “Friedrich-Schiller-Schule”, Ruse
  • departures

All participants were grateful for this invitation and expressed their thanks to the Mayor of Slivo Pole, Mr. Valentin Atanasov, to the Chairman of the Pensioners’ Union, Mr. Yordan Kazakov and to Prof. Emiliya Velikova, Ruse University as coordinator. The seminary and the festival brought all a further step nearer to each other and provided good impressions from various living environments.