Plovdiv and Matera accepted the European Capital of Culture handover at spectacular ceremony in the Holland city Leeuwarden which was the 2018 Capital of Culture together with Valleta .In the theatre hall the major of Plovdiv Ivan Totev and the CEO of ‘Matera Basilica’ Foundation Paolo Verri received statuette as a symbol of the host.
“This project changes not only the face of the titled cities, but also unites the people of the cities and make them more tolerant to everything new.
“As a mayor of one of European Capital of Culture cities I feel responsible and it is very important for me and my team to create the best environment for Plovdiv to keep sharing its rich ancient history values and modern cultural forms of arts with Europe not only in 2019, but long after that.” said the mayor of Plovdiv in his welcome speech and added ‘The motto TOGETHER expended its local significance and managed to attract organizations from Bulgaria and abroad that show their will to be included in our official programme for 2019. Today I accept the handover of the symbol of European Capital of Culture and I believe this title will remain in the history of your town and in people’s hearts as it will in Plovdiv.’
The Deputy Minister of Culture Ameliya Gesheva and Deputy Mayor of Plovdiv Rozalin Petkov were also in the theatre hall. They attended meeting with the mayor Ivan Totev and the Mayor of Leeuwarden Ferd Korne and King's Commissioner of Friesland Arno Brock. They had many conversations regarding the European Capital of Culture project.
Earlier the Bulgarian delegation and representatives of European cities and institutions attended a concert, co-production of Plovdiv and Leeuwarden called ‘Discover the south’. The clarinetist Yashko Argirov and musicians of ‘Berkovitsa’ orchestra made the crowd stand on their feet with their performances.