The international festival known as “Music Days in the Balabanov House” in Plovdiv (in Southern Bulgaria) is among the youngest music festivals in Bulgaria, but it has already gained huge popularity among all music fans in this country. The festival was founded in 2010 by Mila Pavlova in the town of Plovdiv. The famous flutist graduates from The National Music Academy Pancho Vladigerov and specializes in the Paris conservatory under the guidance of Loic Poulain and the celebrated Alain Marion. She is an award-winner of many music contests held in Bulgaria and abroad, among which are the exceptional award and the gold medal of the international music contest in Neerpelt, Belgium in 1989. Mila Pavlova is a famous name on the local music stage and plays as soloist and guest member of prestigious chamber and symphonic orchestras. She was the first one to play various local and foreign musical compositions, and last summer she released a CD named “Messages”, dedicated entirely to the modern Bulgarian music.
The festival she founded two years ago brings her different emotions. After the second edition the festival was honored with a prestigious award in the art sphere, and recently with the award known as “Music project of 2011”.
„As an artistic director and a creator of the festival I am extremely happy that it won the award Project of 2011 in the ranking of the Bulgarian National Radio-“Musician of the Year”, Mila Pavlova
explains. "This is not the first compliment of our good job though. In 2010, the European TV channel Euro News shot a movie about the town of Plovdiv, in which our festival is described as one of the major cultural events of the town. This award shows the love of our audience, and for that I hold it dear.”
With its two editions-the summer edition and the autumn one- the festival is a unique event in the cultural life of Plovdiv. The beautiful houses from the Bulgarian National Revival period open doors for concerts of world famous Bulgarian and foreign artists. Our aim is to revive the forgotten tradition of the so-called house concerts held in the beginning of the past century by the well-educated owners of those lovely houses. Since its creation, participants in the festival are prominent names such as the world-famous soprano singer Krasimira Stoyanova, a soloist of the Vienna opera, the young and talented pianist Evgeny Bozhanov, who is an award winner of many prestigious piano contests. Among the famous contestants are the chamber ensemble “Sofia Soloists” led by conductor Plamen Dzhurov, prominent pianist Bozhidar Noev form Austria, violin player Angel Stankov, wind quintet „Soloists of the Bulgarian National Radio.” Among our youngest artists are the children of Sofia Boys Choir and its choir-master Adriana Blagoeva, winners of many international awards. Our foreign guests are many popular names from the world concert music stage. The festival program is shown on a video screen in front of the Balabanov house. This almost unrealistic initiative became a fact with the financial support of many famous institutions such as America for Bulgaria Foundation, the Ministry of Culture, Municipality of Plovdiv and others.
„For our spring edition we are working on a real celebrity show”-says Mila Pavlova.”It starts on May 28 with a concert - the world of brass from the Wesleyan Brass band from Illinois, USA. These are young and talented artists led by the famous professor Vladislav Grigorov who teaches horn.
Later on, we continue with a piano recital of the exquisite Bulgarian pianist Ludmil Angelov who has already made a world career. His performance is arranged with a lot of good taste - he will perform Chopin, Pancho Vladigerov, Gershwin, and parts from Moshkovski, performed for the first time on stage. The great jazzman Lubomir Denev will play along with the American singer Susan Brownfield and the guest trumpeter Ventsi Blagoev. In a concert on May 31 we will enjoy the performance of the world-famous piper Theodosii Spassov. His partners on stage will be the talented children from the Youth Orchestra of the Musical School in Plovdiv, led by the choir-master Evgeny Shevkenov, who lives in Austria for many years now”.
In June the festival continues with four more concerts. Yulangelo ensemble, which became winner of the award “Ensemble of the Year” will be on stage as well. People are looking forward to the concerts of some Bulgarian violin players who made a successful career in the USA. Miroslav Christov will play along the talented pianist Vladimir Valyarevich from USA, and Svetlana Tsoneva will perform together with Rostislav Iovchev from the musical academy in Sofia. Music fans in Plovdiv will enjoy the performance of the young trio of ASISA from the musical college Queen Sofia in Madrid.
The music program continues with master classes by famous participants in the festival and performances from modern Bulgarian artists who have also gained world popularity, Mila Pavlova concludes. On May 31 an exhibition will be launched named “Music”, which was created by the National Art Academy especially for the festival.
Translated by Kostadin Atanasov
Photos are presented by the organizers of the event