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Lubomir Gospodinov: I would love to play in my homeland

“I love Bulgaria. I miss our beautiful nature and I even miss the Bulgarian mentality”, says Lubomir Gospodinov whose professional path has been associated with Vienna for more than three decades. Lubomir Gospodinov is a remarkable clarinetist, saxophonist, composer and leader of music formations. In the latest edition of “All about Jazz” Michael Bailey writes about Gospodinov the following: “the tone of his saxophone reminds of Wayne Shorter”. Music experts are impressed with “the odd beats of Gospodinov, which are kindled by the saxophone fire of his improvisation”.

When Lubomir Gospodinov departed for Austria, he thought he would stay there for a while. At that time, he studied at the National Academy of Music “Professor Pancho Vladigerov”, but he already had a son and Bulgaria was amidst a severe economic crisis. However, he continued with his studies in the classes of Professor Sava Dimitrov and graduated successfully from the National Academy of Music. He continued his studies in Vienna at Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien in the classes of Professor Peter Schmidtl – a renowned musician and music pedagogue. Later, he fulfilled one of his biggest dreams:

“I have been playing the saxophone for a long time and I am a big fan of jazz music. I decided to study jazz and saxophone better. I studied jazz pedagogy in the same university in the classes of Professor Martin Fuss. I love to play, to write a lot of music and participate at different projects. In 2013, my composition performed by Klock trio won a fourth place at the New York Jazz Competition. I keep in touch with many musicians from Bulgaria, including the celebrated clarinetist Rossen Idealov, colleagues from the Bulgarian National Radio Big Band, Theodosii Spassov, etc.”

Lubomir Gospodinov used to lecture at several prestigious music schools in Vienna. However, he does not like online learning. That is why he suspended this activity. He continues to contact with alumni from Europe and China. Lubomir Gospodinov also continues to compose the music for the projects, in which he participates:

“I work with various musicians and have some jazz projects, too. In the USA, I play with Errol Rackipov who is a brilliant vibraphonist and a very interesting composer. We recorded two CDs with his Errol Rackipov Band. Guitarist Hristo Vitchev plays in one of the CDs and double bassist Peter Slavov participates at the second music project. Hristo Vitchev and Peter Slavov also live in the USA. I like Errol’s music. I play at festivals and in jazz clubs with his music band. We also gave a concert with a symphony orchestra at a large concert hall. I put a lot of effort into the project “Nine”. The project is called “Nine”, because we play odd beats. Moreover, 9 is a special number for me. Before the concerts I tell the listeners details about the odd rhythms and that they are present predominantly in the Balkans.”

Apart from Europe and the USA, Lubomir has also given concerts in South America and Asia. He regrets that he has been the least active in his homeland:

“I love Bulgaria a lot. The longer I am abroad, the more I want to return to Bulgaria. I grew up in Bulgaria and always return to my home country when I get a chance. I was looking for opportunities to perform here, but so far, no one has responded to my mails and calls. Last year I made a small music tour with an Austrian trio called Kinti (Money). We financed the tour ourselves. This was the first time I played in Bulgaria, except for several performances at music clubs in Sofia.”

Of course, Lubomir wants to meet with more Bulgarian music lovers. He has not given up travelling to other countries either.

English version: Kostadin Atanasov

Photos: courtesy of Lubomir Gospodinov

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