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Vladimir Karparov's new album ˮIglikaˮ is named after his 6-year-old daughter

Some of the pieces will be performed at a concert in Sofia in April with the BNR Big Band

Photo: Personal Archive

The album ˮIglikaˮ is a collection of nine original compositions by the famous Bulgarian saxophonist Vladimir Karparov, each of which is an invaluable part of a mosaic, recounting personal experiences and life events that have marked his path over the past few years. The music, which is a colourful blend of contemporary jazz and Bulgarian folk elements, is bright, expressive and full of witty melodic twists and metrerhythms. As Vladimir says, some of the pieces reflect contemporary topics. Like "Refugee", for example, in which the composer literally imagines himself being one of the people he sympathises with wholeheartedly - refugees fleeing aggression, violence and poverty and looking for a new home. „Berlinsko Horo“ (Berlin Horo Dance) is dedicated to the German capital, where Vladimir has lived and worked for more than 20 years. ˮThis city has an incredible number of faces and cultures that I wish one day could join together in a big horo chain dance,ˮ he says. As for the opening composition and its extraordinary story, we learn from Vladimir Karparov's interview with Radio Bulgaria:

ˮWhen I had to arrange the compositions for the album, I decided to connect them with the meaning of their names and to unite them in a story related to my personal life. For me, these things are one - my music and my personal life. In the beginning is the piece ˮMerakˮ (desire, yearning - ed.), my merak in terms of music - what made me play the saxophone, create my own original music, work, evolve. The next piece is dedicated to Kamelia - my wife, my muse. She is from the Pazardzhik region, she knows and loves to dance quite complicated Bulgarian folk dances. Actually, that's how we met - she was leading the horo at a celebration here in Berlin. And I wrote the piece for one of our anniversaries. I'm very lucky that all the illustrations in the booklet are by my 6-year-old daughter, who is very good at visual arts.
The inspiration for one of the most colourful pieces ˮSilvester Kücekˮ is a funny, but also a bit strange situation that almost every musician has been in, Vladimir continues his story:

"I had to play at a New Year's Eve party for people I didn't know, invited by a DJ whom I didn't know either. I had to play along with pre-recorded music. I'm pretty experienced in different genres, but that night something kept not working out. No matter how hard I tried, one of the organizers was still not happy. They paid me and I left before the end of the party. On the way out a few ladies did say though how much they enjoyed it. Completely shocked, I went home to my family, and in the end, this unfortunate event turned out to be a blessing in disguise, because then I wrote this piece and it came to me in the car on the way home, while I was thinking that maybe I shouldn't take this kind of jobs anymore and that I had a lot more to give as a musician."

All of these vibrant musical stories will be presented in Berlin by the Vladimir Karparov Quartet, which also features Daniel Stawinski (piano), Igor Spallati (double bass), Dimitris Christides (drums).
Some of the pieces will also be performed in Bulgaria in April, in Vladimir's original concert with the Bulgarian National Radio Big Band, for which he received an invitation from conductor Antoni Donchev.
ˮI am extremely grateful for this opportunity, I am currently preparing the arrangements. We hope to perform the programme from the CD with the quartet on one of the Bulgarian festival stages."
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