The Bulgarian culture is a sustainable source of national emotionality. The Municipality has a great significance in the enrichment of the cultural heritage, preservation of Bulgarian language and literature, traditions and customs and the main reason of Bulgarian monuments’ protection is to keep their proper place in Common Europe.
In the Municipality of Vratsa, there are municipal departmental and private cultural institutions. The puppet theatre, the Historical Museum, the Art gallery and the Philharmonic orchestra of Vratsa are located in the Palace of Culture.
The Community Centre “Razvitie”, the Regional Library and the Ethnographic complex of the Bulgarian national revival “St. Sofroniy Vrachanski” have their own inventory bases. The Children Complex and the Municipal Home of Youth purpose work the children and youngsters
There are three private galleries in Vratsa. The Historical Museum is the only place, where everyone can see the exhibition of the unique “Rogozensko Sakrovishte” (The treasure found in the village of Rogozen), which was returned to the museum several years ago, due to the investment of the municiplaty in purchasing of a proper security system. These tracian treasures from the Mogilan mound in Vratsa and the village of Rogozen have been exhibited in the biggest museums in Europe, America and Asia.
The cultural calendar of Vratsa includes important international forums such as:
- National review of the small theatre forms – organized by the Municipality of Vratsa, and the Theatre of Vratsa with the financial support of the Ministry of Culture.
- International amateur theatrical festival “Vreme” (Time) - organized by the Home of Youth – Vratsa with the support of the Ministry of Youth and Sports.
- the Youth Music Forum - annually organized by the Philharmonic Orchestra - Vratsa.
- Municipal Cultural Events - Botev’s Days in Vratsa
The following groups maintain broad international contacts and take part in international forums: The Puppet Theatre, The Philharmonic Orchestra of Vratsa, Theatre Group “Temp” at the Home of Youth, dancing ensembles at the Community Centre "Razvitie” and Social children services – Vratsa.
During the different historical periods, Vratsa has been developing as an important social, trading and cultural centre. Traces from human activities on these lands date back from the late Stone Age. The first inhabitants - the Thracian tribe of the Tribals developed material culture at high level, traces of which are still available in the Region of Vratsa. The unique findings of the archeological excavations of the “Mogilanskata mogila" (The Mogilanska Mound) in Vratsa, Bukjuvtsi and the village of Rogozen have supplied exhaustive information about the flourishing ancient civilization. The Romans, who valued the strategic location of the lands around the gorge, had turned them into an inapproachable fortress, which controlled the shortest way from Danube to the South and the West, to the rich ore mines high in the mountain. Over the remnants of the fortress the Slavs built a settlement that they called “Vratitsa” – a stronghold of great importance also in the Second Bulgarian Kingdom. During Middle Ages, Vratitsa extended its boundaries turning into a big central place with well-developed crafts and monetary interrelations. These times have left the heritage of many monuments of their spiritual and material culture. During the Renaissance the town was the birthplace of many brilliant personalities, who had left lasting traces in the national policy, National Liberation Movement, in the Bulgarian culture and enlightment. These periods,people and events are represented in the rich exhibitions of the Regional Historical Museum.
|Community Centre||The treasure of
|Cultural Institutions||Kurtpashova Tower|
The cultural institutions in Vratsa are the State Philharmonic Orchestra, the Puppet Theatre, the Regional Historical Museum with Art Gallery, the Library “Hristo Botev”, as well as seventeen Community Centres on the territory of the Municipality.
The State Philharmonic Orchestra was established in 1909 as a Musical Society “Orpheus”, which gave many symphonic, operatic and musical-comedy concerts and performances. The orchestra consists of 52 professional musicians who produce about 70 concerts per season. Their repertoire includes works from all styles and genres. A great number of famous musicians from Austria, Belgium, Great Britain, Japan, Italy, Germany, Canada, France and the USA were guest- conductors of the Philharmonic orchestra. and has issued eight CDs. In October and November every year, the Orchestra organizes the International Youth Musical Forum, which 19th session was held in 2004.
|Philharmonic Orchestra Vratsa|
Puppet Theatre in Vratsa was established in 1938. It has its own building with big hall gathers up an audience of 748 people, chamber hall with 120 seats, puppet hall with 80 and a ballet one with 80 as well. The Puppet Theatre is a host of the Annual Festival of Small Theatrical Forms, which is being held in May each year. The actors and the directors of the staging “The House of Ivan” and “Didro in Petersburg” received awards from the Festival in 2004. The actress Jordanka Stefanova was awarded as the Ist price of the Festival as well the Theatre Award “Asker” 2004 for main female performance.
Regional Historical Museum with Art Gallery (RHMAG) – Vratsa is an inheritor of a tradition, the beginning of which had been set with the ordination of St. Sofroniy as “Episkop Vrachnaski” (the Bishop of Vratsa). It has existed as a professional institution since 1953. The main support fund of RHMAG exceeds 100 000 items (2200 of which belong to the Art Gallery). In RHMAG one can see one of the most beautiful and most ancient Thracian treasures – The Treasure of the Mogilanskata mound and the treasure found in the village of Rogozen - “Rogozenskoto Sakrovishte”, comprising 165 gilded silver vessels – jugs, phials, and vases. One can also see there the last exponent found by archaeologists from Vratsa – a 9000 years old skeleton of a woman. The museum has a Lapidary hall and a separate Ethnographic Complex of the Bulgarian National Revival.
“Hristo Botev” Library was established in 1954 and it keeps over 250 000 library documents. More than 100 are the periodic publications, which are available in the library. Director of the Library is Mr. Ivan Penev - a poet and a winner of the Award of Vratsa for 2003.
There are four churches in Vratsa and one of them - “Sveto Vaznesenie” is a Historical monument, which was built in 1848 in the days of Arch-bishop Agatiy among the houses of prominent families. Vasil Levski (the celibate priest Ignatiy), sang here in 1872 and it was the place, where the local Revolutionary Committee made the preparation of the attempt for upheaval (19.V.1876). In the female part of the temple three Russian soldiers were buried, killed in battle in this region, during the Liberation War between Russia and Turkey (1877). In the vicinity of Vratsa there are also the monasteries "Ivan Pusti”, “The Monasteryof Cherepish” and “The Monastery of Strupets” which are very closely related to the Bulgarian History.