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Opera basso Slavin Peev: We should hear Bulgarian works more often in concert halls

Photo: slavinpeev.de

A chamber concert entitled "Bulgarian Rhapsody" featuring works by popular Bulgarian composers only, will be presented by three musicians in Plovdiv on May 16. The concert venue is Saedinenie Hall. The occasion is the Day of Bulgarian Education and Culture and Slavic Literature, which is solemnly celebrated on May 24 throughout Bulgaria.

Slavin Peev, an opera basso who has been giving concerts in Italy, Germany, Austria and other countries in Europe, has returned to Bulgaria especially for this performance in front of the Plovdiv audience. Mezzo-soprano Anita Dafinska and Rositsa Dimova - pianist and conductor at the Plovdiv Opera - will appear on the stage together with him. The programme themed "Bulgarian Rhapsody" includes 5 less frequently performed works by prominent Bulgarian composer Pancho Wladigeroff, as well as works by Lyubomir Pipkov, Dobri Hristov, Georgi Zlatev-Cherkin, Pencho Peev and others.

The concert is an initiative of the young musicians and is organized entirely with personal funds in expression of their admiration for the Bulgarian spirit embodied in the works of a whole galaxy of talented Bulgarian composers. In Slavin Peev’s opinion, the audience in Bulgaria deserves to have more concerts in which they can listen to Bulgarian music.

"We are Europeans and we have our place in European culture, but unfortunately Bulgarian music is not very popular abroad. I present various works by foreign authors, but Bulgarian music is the closest to me," says opera singer Slavin Peev.

Slavin Peev  as Baron di Kelbar in Verdi's  “Un gioro di regno”

"That is why I want to hold Bulgarian concerts everywhere, not only in front of a Bulgarian audience. Now, on May 16, is my first concert with Bulgarian works in front of a native audience, otherwise I sang in Bulgarian in Salzburg and in various halls in Germany. Our music is very well received there. Western audiences understand it perfectly. Yes, it is exotic to them, but it amazes me that without understanding the text, they perceive the message. This is exactly my task - to convey through my voice the messages that the songs carry. This is sometimes quite difficult. But there should be more such concerts in Bulgaria. Bulgarian works are at our roots as a nation, in our subconsciousness, we identify with them as a community."

Slavin Peev says he feels well-received as a singer everywhere in Western Europe, where he has had many appearances over the past two years despite restrictions due to the pandemic. He is a fourth-generation opera performer, and as a curious detail from the family history he mentions the name of the composer Pencho Peev, his great-grandfather, who at the beginning of the 1900s founded the first operetta in the town of Silistra.

At the concert in Plovdiv Slavin will present for the first time a song composed by Pencho Peev. It's en titled "I didn't reach out."

"Singing in front of a Bulgarian audience and singing songs in Bulgarian is the most precious gift I can receive as a musician," Slavin Peev told Radio Bulgaria:

"What makes me feel good here are the people, their warm attitude towards each other. I have friends in other countries, too, but they have a different mentality. And with  Bulgarians, even when we meet abroad, we immediately become close and then comes the nostalgia that I am far from Bulgaria. We have a very good, curious and grateful audience. A woman came to me and thanked me for the warmth she felt through my singing. That is why we are doing this concert in Plovdiv. My advice to young colleagues is to do things relying mainly on themselves. As difficult as it is, if you work hard yourself, then you will gain experience and self-confidence, without which there is no way to move forward in our profession”.

Edited by Albena Bezovska

English version Rositsa Petkova

Photos: slavinpeev.de

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