Yalli (Kocheri,Tanzara) “Traditional group dances of Nakhchivan” were included UNESCO’s Enhanced Protection List


Sharur yallis were closely developed with the history, ethnography, ceremonies, mythological beliefs, customs and performance culture of our people. The massive dance elements engraved on the stone in Gamigaya indicate that the yalli art in Nakhchivan has a very ancient history. Our great leader Heydar Aliyev said: “Yallis are our past, today and future. Yallis are the symbol of heroism, bravery and also history of Azerbaijani people. This history must never be forgotten. In Nakhchivan, this history develops and remains as a sample for future generations”.

According to the decree of the Chairman of Supreme Majlis of Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, Mr. Vasif Talıbov dated on February 7, 2009 “On holding the Folk Art Days in Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic” defined new directions in the study, alive and promote of yalli art.

“The three of those yallis including Ashabi-Kahf, Gamigaya and Sharur yallis are very dear to us. We must protect them by all means, said Mr. Vasif Talıbov, the Chairman of Supreme Majlis of Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic. Complex measures were taken with special care of the Supreme Majlis Chairman for the purpose of improvement of yallis in Nakhchivan  and for the first time they were noted and based on this the book “Nakhchivan-Sharur people yallis” was published.

Today, totally 21 yalli dance groups operates under Sharur Folk Yalli Ensemble and regional culture departments in the autonomous republic. For the activitiy of Sharur Folk Yalli Ensemble all conditions were created, compact discs of ensemble performances were prepared. As a continuation of the done works in this field, according to the instruction of the Supreme Majlis Chairman, the National Academy of Sciences of Azerbaijan and the Ministry of Culture of Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic conducted research on yalli art, implemented activities on the protection of this heritage at the UNESCO level, the activities of Sharur Folk Yalli Ensemble and information on yalli art in Nakhchivan were prepared and submitted to the relevant authorities.

From November 26 to December 1, 2018 at the 13th session of the UNESCO Intergovernmental Committee for Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage was held in Port Luis, the capital of Mauritius, Yalli (Kocheri,Tanzara) group dances of Nakhchivan were included to the UNESCO’s Protection List.

The mentioned nomination document was presented jointly by the Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Azerbaijan to UNESCO. The main purpose of presenting the nomination document under the name of Nakhchivan is to promote and highlighte the traditional culture and folklore of people living in Nakhchivan, the ancient and historical territory of our country, at the same time preserving these traditions at UNESCO level.

Thus, the provocative attempts against Sharur, namely “Kocheri” yalli “Yalli (Kocheri, Tanzara)- the traditional group dances of Nakhchivan”, prevented Armenia from misappropriate our values to its name and through this gave a worthy response to the aggressive country.

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