Kazakh Gulder Ensemble Performs Again in Blazing Celebration of National Dance

ASTANA – Kazakhstan’s legendary Gulder (Flowers) dance ensemble gave its first performance in the new composition on March 1, reported the Kazakh Ministry of Culture and Sports’ press service.

Gulder dance ensemble gave its first performance on the Kazakhstan Central Concert Hall stage. Photo credit: Minister Askhat Oralov’s Facebook.

Kazakhstan Central Concert Hall exploded with energy when young performers and the ensemble’s former members captivated the audience with the ensemble’s lightness and color.

It was over five decades ago that an ornate, traditional Kazakh dance ensemble first appeared on national stages, dancing bright and emotional performances to a selection of Kazakh folk songs, kuis (national music), aitys (improvisation art), and national dances. 

Dozens of dancers move and breathe in unison, showcasing the bright flavour of Kazakh national dance. Photo credit: Minister Askhat Oralov’s Facebook.

Minister of Culture and Sport Askhat Oralov said the ministry put a lot of effort into reviving the ensemble.

“We managed to make this project a reality by finding creative directors, selecting the most talented graduates from art universities, and preparing a repertoire that included, among other things, the ensemble’s ‘golden’ hits,” he wrote on Facebook.

Anvara Sadykova, a master of ballet, was invited to serve as one of the mentors, and Serik Davletov, a conductor and arranger, served as the project’s artistic director.

“More than one generation of Kazakhs grew up on Gulder’s music thus the collective with such a history should continue to delight listeners. Especially the youth, who are not familiar with their repertoire. From the very first days of its existence, the ensemble became a true forge of talents paving the way to the big stage for dozens of legendary performers. I believe such a glorious tradition must be revived,” said Oralov.

From its inception in 1969, the ensemble became a symbol of folk and pop art in Kazakhstan. Its dance performances were compared to a bouquet of flowers gathered on the peaks of the Alatau mountains and scattered across the stage.

The ensemble Gulder established its presence in Kazakh culture by creating original dance numbers and compositions on folk instruments. The soloists’ songs went on to become hit songs and were sung all over the country.

At various times, the ensemble has hosted prominent singers such as Roza Rymbayeva, Aizhan Nurmagambetova, Makpal Junusova, Nagima Yeskalieva, Zhenis Seidullauly, Bakhtiyar Tailakbayev, and others.

For decades, it has been known for its diverse repertoire performed in national style and an awe-inspiring entertainment staged in concert halls and stadiums all over the Soviet Union.

According to the ensemble records, Gulder gave 279 concerts in 1974 and the first half of 1975, 68 of which were in the villages and attended by a total of 41,674 people.

The ensemble also tirelessly toured the world, visiting Europe, Southeast Asia, and Cuba.

The audiences of Pakistan, Burma, Singapore, Malaysia, and Sri Lanka praised the artists’ performance skills in 1974. Later they performed in the Czech Republic, Poland, Mongolia, and Germany.

Their domestic and international success brought a shower of state and international awards, including the grand award in the ninth World Festival of Youth and Students in Havana, Cuba in 1979.

Next year Gulder is celebrating its 55th anniversary. This year, the next concert is to take place in Almaty in May, and more tours are to follow in Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Türkiye.

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