Plovdiv, Bulgaria's oldest city, has been officially inaugurated as the 2019 European Capital of Culture.
Around 50,000 people gathered on Saturday to watch the opening show entitled "we are all colours" with 1,500 local and foreign artists performing on several stages.
The city, which will share the title with the Italian city of Matera, is well known for its ethnic diversity.
Many of its 340,000 inhabitants belong to the Turkish, Roma, Armenian, Greek and Jewish minorities, all of which have quite a strong influence on the city's vibrant cultural life.
Some 350 cultural events are scheduled throughout the year, including an exhibition featuring fragments of the Berlin Wall to mark 30 years since its fall.
Plovdiv claims to be the oldest continually inhabited European city, with more than 6,000 years of history.