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Princess Sofia, present at Coronation Day in Alba Iulia

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Princess Sofia has participated, on Friday, in the Coronation Day, a series of events dedicated to the 99th anniversary of the crowning of King Ferdinand the Unifier and Queen Maria, in Alba Iulia.

The manifestations, organized by the Alba County Council and the Alba Iulia City Hall mark the opening of the Coronation Centenary Year, which will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the coronation that took place on October 15, 1922 in Alba Iulia.

Together with the prefect of Alba county, Nicolae Albu, President of the Alba County Council, Ion Dumitrel, and the Mayor of Alba Iulia City, Gabriel Plesa, Princess Sofia took part in a series of events, taking place in a restricted setting due to the context of the pandemic. Thus, after the reading, from the Esplanade of the Union Hall, of the Coronation Proclamation of King Ferdinand I, the guest of honor and the county and local officials assisted in inaugurating a photography exhibition, featuring images of King Mihai I and from the coronation on October 15, 1922.

Princess Sofia chose the winning works of the competition themed after the coronation in Alba Iulia (painting and drawing), works done by the pupils at the Regina Maria Arts Highschool in Alba Iulia.

After a Te Deum officiated in the Coronation Cathedral by Archbishop Irineu of Alba Iulia, the Union Hall hosted an extraordinary concert performed by the Alba County Chamber Orchestra and soloists Alexandru Pal, on the pan flute, and Dan-Liviu Cernat, on violin. On this occasion, the musical work titled "Coronation March" was presented, piece written initially for vocal interpretation and which has not been publicly performed for nearly 100 years.

Princess Sofia also signed in the Honor Book of the Alba Iulia National Union Museum.

The Union Hall also hosted on Friday the launch of the book "The bad queen," a volume inspired by the story of Queen Maria of Romania.

Another moment of the Coronation Day was the unveiling of the bust of King Mihai I on the esplanade of the National Union Museum. Done with support from the Alba County Council by artist Ovidiu Protopopescu, the bust was unveiled by Princess Sofia, President Ion Dumitrel and Mayor Gabriel Plesa.

For nearly a year, Alba Iulia will host activities relating to the coronation in 1922. The Coronation Centenary Year project is organized by the Alba County Council, through Augustin Bena Cultural Center and the Alba Iulia National Union Museum, in partnership with the Alba Iulia City Hall and under the patronage of the Royal House of Romania.

In 2014, a protocol was signed, for a period of ten years, between the Royal House of Romania, the Alba County Council and the Alba Iulia City Hall, document which envisages the way of collaboration between the three partners, as well as a calendar of activities which will take place in October of each year in Alba Iulia.

The event that took place on October 15, 1922, in Alba Iulia, was the first coronation of a Romanian monarch to take place after the union of all historical Romanian provinces. While King Ferdinand had been on the throne since the death of his predecessor, Carol I, in 1914, the coronation was postponed due to World War I, in which Romania participated starting with 1916, and the Romanian-Hungarian War (1918-1919).

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