Novruz, or “Novruz Bayrami” as it is referred to in Azerbaijan is a traditional Persian holiday which celebrates the coming of Spring and the New Year. Each of the 4 weeks preceding Novruz is devoted to one of the four elements. Each Tuesday people celebrate the day of one of the four elements – water, fire, earth and wind. People do house cleaning, plant trees, make new dresses, paint eggs, make national pastries such as shakarbura, pakhlava and a great variety of “national cuisine”. Wheat is fried with kishmish (raisins) and nuts (govurga). As a tribute to fire-worshiping every Tuesday during four weeks before the holiday, children jump over small bonfires and candles are lit.
Every year this popular, national holiday is not only celebrated by our friends in Azerbaijan, but also by members of the Azerbaijani diaspora around the world and our Houston Azerbaijani community is no different!
For past years HBSCA’s facilitated the celebration of Novruz . On March 15th, 2014 the Azerbaijan Center in a collaboration with the Houston Baku Sister City Association (HBSCA) organized an Annual Novruz Bayram celebration with special musical performance from the Gochag Askarov Ensemble, and a short lecture from ethnomusicologist, Sanubar Baghirova.
The evening started with the short lecture about mugam; its history and importance in Azerbaijani culture. Then, the Gochag Askarov Ensemble performed mugam (an ancient art of singing in Azerbaijan) for all attendees.
With the coming of Spring, Novruz is one of the happiest holidays that brings families and the larger community together.
For more pictures from this event, please click here