Colorful bouquet of styles for the 25th anniversary of “Vanya Moneva” Choir


This year the "Vanya Moneva" women's folk choir celebrates its 25th anniversary. Just days ago in the "Bulgaria" Hall in Sofia the singers presented a diverse program, featuring well-known works and premiers, as well as pleasant surprises for the audience. At the beginning of her creative career, Vanya Moneva worked with a number of famous choir ensembles – the Women's Folk Choir at the Bulgarian National Radio (today "The Mystery of the Bulgarian Voices"), “Aleko Konstantinov” Mixed Choir, "Petko Staynov" Mixed Choir and others. Today, Vanya Moneva is a music producer at the Bulgarian National Radio. The choir she has been conducting for a quarter of a century was created on July 11, 1994. That was the date when the first rehearsal took place and among the folk singers back then were famous Nadka Karadzhova and Svetla Karadzhova, Yanka Taneva, Pavlina Gorcheva, Boyka Prisadova, Liliana Galevska, etc. Several years ago the singers and their conductor adopted the name "Vanya Moneva" Choir, but preserved their rich repertoire and history.

“The choir has been constantly developing and enriching its repertoire, reaching to a broader genre spectrum,” Vanya Moneva says. "Twenty-five years are enough to show that you deserve your place on the scene and that you meet the trust of the audience. It is important for an artist to go on stage when they really have something to say in order to prove professional development. We started in a time when many things around us collapsed - bands collapsed, cultural institutions were in a difficult financial situation; it was very difficult for everyone in Bulgaria. But even in difficult times, good things are born. According to me, having the motivation to create and the energy and power to do it is just a part of the process. Preserving the energy and developing it is hard. I think me and my girls have succeeded in winning more and more fans. I call them ‘my girls’ because singers aged 17-18 start their career in the choir through the styles I have chosen as a way of music expression. The choir is young as the average age of the singers. They come from different regions – Dobrudzha, Rhodopes, Thrace, northwestern and southwestern Bulgaria, as well as northern Bulgaria. We have a wide variety of styles and voices – soft and tender, ‘sharp’, wide... All this is gathered in a nice bouquet that is the face of our choir.”

At the festive concert songs arranged by masters like Kosta Kolev, Stefan Mutafchiev and Krassimir Kyurkchiyski were performed, as well as the song "Bela sam bela, yunache", transformed by Rumen Boyadzhiev-Jr especially for the occasion. The singers also performed a piece by Professor Alexander Tekeliev, written for a string quartet and a choir.

“The program was diverse and colorful,” Mrs. Moneva adds. “In addition to well-known works, we also wanted to show new directions we have been following. My daughter Maria Ilieva also appeared on stage and we performed ‘Lale li si, Zumbul li si’ from the repertoire of famous folk singer Verka Siderova. It was a challenge because Maria is a singer performing in a different genre, but Bulgarian folklore is very close to her heart. It was very exciting and we understood each other without much talking when it came to the nuances and the construction of the song, which turned out great. We gave a new shape to this song and the audience was fascinated. I think we managed to show the big stylistic range and vocal capabilities of the singers, as well as their ability to sing in a long concert."

English: Alexander Markov

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