Autumn is always breathtaking in Uzbekistan, offering an awesome and spectacular range of natural colors. Natural colors not only represented by landscapes, trees, flowers, and a cloudless blue sky, but also by food stalls and bazaars (markets) full of fruits and vegetables of different kinds and colors and trees shunning their leaves, exhibiting a range of colors. Yes, Uzbekistan is a land of colors in autumn.
Nature from any land provides inspirational color schemes that dwellers of the land may use in their costumes. This is why Uzbeki (people of Uzbekistan) love to wear multi-colored costumes and clothes, because nature has given them so many colors. And color is not limited to just clothing – almost every food of Uzbekistan when it is presented at the table is multi-colored. Uzbek plov (Pilaf) is one of the popular examples of this. This year, I decided I wanted to know the history and background of Uzbek costumes, and when I was trying to find information about the costumes of Uzbekistan, I came to know that there was one institution that could help me find out the historic perspective of the “Costumes of Uzbekistan” and that was “El Merosi” (Folk Legacy), the theater of historical costumes located in Samarkand.
I discussed this with my host Ravshan TURAKULOV (the family name is written in all capital letters in Central Asia), whose company Silk Road Destinations leads in promoting the cultural heritage and tourism of Uzbekistan.
When I asked Mr. Ravshan about this theater, he looked at my face, smiled, and said, “You know my former Ustaad (teacher) is one of the initiators of this wonderful institution, and this is situated just [a] 5-minute[‘s] drive away from where we are sitting.”