El Merosi Theater of Historical Costume was founded in April 2006. The main goal of the theater is to recreate and promote the cultural heritage of the peoples of the region through the prism of costumes.
El Merosi Theater has taken a certain place in the cultural life of the country, as evidenced by numerous performances for foreign VIP guests and tourists, company staff and educational institutions.
El Merosi Theater represented the national culture in France, Germany, Italy, Belgium (twice), Turkey (thrice), Turkmenistan, Russia (twice), Korea, Japan, and other countries.
El Merosi Theater is a participant of the international music festivals Shark Taronasi and Asrlar Sadosi in Uzbekistan, CIS Stars in Moscow, the Krasnoyarsk Festival of the Asia-Pacific Ocean Region and others.
Theater actors are the youth of Samarkand city students of universities, lyceums and colleges; they are 18 – 25 years old.
“Only the one who is able to
discover something new while turning
to old is worthy of being human.”
This law is simple and precise: everything new is based on the old, grows out of it, and transforms itself into the new.
How can we learn about those who came before us, who lived their life on the same ground that we are walking on, and who left their mark in the history that we are now so interested to find?
History and Archeology.
All sources of history can be divided into two large groups: material and written. Tools of labor, remnants of ancient buildings, burials, mine workings and shrines, caves, ancient irrigation systems, decorations, dishes – everything that man has created are the most valuable sources for historians. Cave paintings are of great interest to researchers of the past times. According to the drawings carved on the rocks, painted with plant paints on the walls of caves and grottoes, it is possible, to some extent, to form an idea of the world surrounding the ancient people, their views on the world and on their own kind.
Authoritative evidence is written sources that are extensive and varied.
The unique heritage of our ancestors – the traditional costumes of people of different eras, different beliefs, and different states – represent the eternal dream of the beautiful, embodied in household items, jewelry and especially in creating the external appearance of a person.
Clothes not only isolate a human from the external environment, but also, according to the beliefs of our distant ancestors, preserves and strengthens it with the help of magical actions, often encrypted in drawings and ornaments. The magical power of the folk costume is so great that you experience aesthetic pleasure, when you look into this treasure house and realize its connection with customs, rituals, and with the most ancient sources of culture. Folk costume becomes a chronicle of the life of our ancestors, which reveals to us many intimate secrets and laws of beauty in the language of color, form, and ornament.
The Moment of Eternity theatrical performance begins with a dance and music performance, where the harsh hunters of the Bronze Age (end of III – beginning of II millennium BC) perform hunting scenes. Their costumes handmade of coarse weaving fabrics and trimmed with leather and fur were reconstructed on the materials of archaeological expeditions. This performance has fragments of traditional ritual dances of peoples worshiping nature and the spirits of birds, animals and plants, for which there was more mysticism than knowledge.
They are replaced by nomads, whose costumes already have more fur and leather, and the spears in their hands were replaced by short swords – akinaks. Costumes from the mid I thousand BC were recreated based on the images on silver vessels and bas-reliefs of Behistun (Iran). Militant Scythians depict the scene of the battle in which both men and women participate, who had a high status in nomadic society.
Rhythmic – one can even say, aggressive – music disappears with those with whom it is so well associated, and “golden” Achaemenids appear on the scene. Smooth movement of demonstrators correspond to the dignity of aristocrats and royal persons. Their costumes of VIII-VI centuries BC are created on the images on stone and majolica bas-reliefs of palaces in Pars, Persepolis, and Babylon. They are more complex and sophisticated, with high headdresses, telling about the high status of the owner. Various cults coexisted peacefully in the vast Achaemenid empire, including the cult of the divine essence of Anahit.
It is as if mythical birds with wings of the finest fabric of different colors fluttered onto the stage – these are Anahit priestesses. These costumes were restored based on the clay sculptures of Anahita found in Afrosiab. The costumes are decorated with gold and silver cords, beads, and round plates. Big turbans are worn on the head.
The Sogdian period is presented by the embassy of Chaganian King in Samarkand – acquaintance with the princess and offering gifts. The royal person appears with her suite in rich clothes, decorated with gold and silver embroidery and painting. Costumes of IV-VII centuries AD were created based on wall paintings of Afrosiab (Samarkand), Penjikent (Tajikistan), and Varakhsha (Bukhara).
Temurids (XIV-XV centuries AD) replace Sogdians. Information about this historical period is more available because writing was widely usedand generously “flavored” with illustrations (Babur-name, Zafar-name). The clothes of the courtiers and noble ladies are made of velvet, brocade, silk, and richly decorated with gilded laces and ribbons. This time is considered the heyday of science, culture and poetry, which has become an essential attribute of palace receptions and festivities. It is this side of the life of the inhabitants of Temurids that the artists showed.
The performance is completed by the rite which survived in the almost undistorted form in the various regions of Uzbekistan to the present day; these are weddings. Costumes of XIX century are made of silk, brocade, bekasam, and satin. Gold and silver embroidery are widely used, both in women’s and men’s clothes.
The classical national Uzbek dances performed by soloists of the theater harmoniously complement the performance program. For a relatively short period of its existence, El Merosi Theater of Historical Costume received deserved recognition not only in Uzbekistan, but also honorably represented the national culture on tour in Belgium, Germany, Italy, France, Russia, Turkmenistan, Turkey, the Republic of Korea and Japan.