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Mario Angelov: Piano Music is prelude to upcoming concert of Bulgarian National Radio Symphony Orchestra

Photo: BNR archive

"Piano Music” is the title of the program, which Mario Angelov presents on May 12, at BNR’s First Studio. The audience will hear works by Alfred Schnittke, Bach, Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven. Angelov has been a pianist at the Bulgarian National Radio for nearly three decades and for several years he has been a producer of symphony music at BNR's Music House. Mario Angelov has never interrupted his solo career. On the occasion of his upcoming concert, he told us more:

“First of all, I would like to point out that my concert was designed as a prelude to the concert of the Bulgarian National Radio on May 17 in Sofia Hall. Conductor is Mark Kadin. Great cellist Atanas Krastev will perform Concert No. 1 by Shostakovich. The rest of the works will be heard for the first time in Bulgaria: ‘Silent Music’ by composer Valentin Silvestrov, who was born in Kiev, the suite to the film score ‘The Queen of Spades’ by Sergei Prokofiev and the suite to the film score for ‘Dead Souls.’ The music is work by Alfred Schnittke and arrangement is by Gennady Rozhdestvensky, as I am the soloist. On May 12 I will also perform a work by Schnittke – Suite in the Old Style, for violin & piano, as I have transformed the work for solo piano. Some of the other works are considered easy to perform even by advanced students at the School of Music, except perhaps for Chromatic Fantasia and Fugue in D minor by Bach, which many pianists jokingly call ‘Problematic Fantasia and Fugue’. I think that a program of beautiful music performed on a Sunday would bring joy to the audience. The last work is Beethoven'sSonata Pathétique’.

One of the main lines that Mario follows in his work both as a pianist and producer, is performing modern music with a focus on Bulgarian composers, regardless of personal preferences and attitudes. According to him, Bulgarian music culture must be preserved, even the works, which date back to the dawn of professional music in Bulgaria that some say are of insufficient quality. “This is part of our history and we have to preserve it. We should not judge but do our job honestly. In this regard, the Symphony Orchestra of the Bulgarian National Radio has been preserving vigorously the work of Bulgarian composers. For example, during the last season we exclusively recorded works by Bulgarian authors in order to renew the old record fund of the radio.”

Mario Angelov has graduated from the Lyubomir Pipkov National School of Music - first in the class of Lyudmila Chenkova and then with Prof. Nikolay Evrov. “I owe a lot to Mrs. Chenkova," the pianist says. "She was working very hard, telling me that we were laying the foundation on which I would build my career. For me, this is the most honest approach - teaching a student how to learn and develop on their own. I am also grateful to Prof. Mara Petkova from the National Academy of Music. I chose her because I knew she was a student of great Claudio Arrau. After graduating, I continued to go to personal lessons with Prof. Petkova for many years, and I think I got my true education during that time, communicating with her as a younger colleague of hers. In 1991 a contest for pianists at the Bulgarian National Radio was announced and since then I have been part of the Symphony Orchestra. I consider myself a lucky man as I never froze in my development. Producing symphony music and working with scores of large-scale works has been enriching and inspiring to me.

Fans of classical music who want to hear the piano music program on May 12 could receive invitations from the Information Office at the Bulgarian National Radio. The concert starts at 12 o'clock.

English: Alexander Markov

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