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2 - 26 November 2010 

London Festival of Bulgarian Culture

Amazing voices
Le Mystère Des Voix Bulgares
2 November, 7:30p.m., Queen Elizabeth Hall

This women’s choir represents some of the most internationally renowned Bulgarian performers. Winner of a Grammy Award, the choir has sold over 1.2 million albums worldwide, and its music has been endorsed by stars including Paul Simon, George Harrison and Bobby McFerrin. This exclusive one night only London appearance at the opening gala concert of the London Festival of Bulgarian Culture offers a special chance to hear the amazing voices of this unique ensemble. With the special appearance of four talented young children supported by the Dimitar Berbatov Arts Foundation.

Cosmos, fireworks and light- from Haydn to Howard
The Bridge Quartet, Devorina Gamalova- violin/viola
5 November, 7:30p.m, St. James’s Piccadilly

On Bonfire Night the Bridge String Quartet, celebrating their 20th Anniversary this year, will light the touch paper with one of Haydn’s most improvisatory quartets op 54 no2. Tchaikovsky’s effervescent first quartet provides the explosive finale. The Bridge Quartet also give the UK PREMIERE of the pithy “Microcosmos” Quartet by Marin Goleminov, and then they are joined by Bulgarian violinist and violist Devorina Gamalova for the WORLD PREMIERE of John Howard’s Quartet “From Darkness to Light”.

East meets West
London Bulgarian Choir
12 November, 7:30p.m, St. John’s Smith Square

This performance celebrates the London Bulgarian Choir’s 10th anniversary with the launch of six new songs commissioned by the BBC Choral Ambition fund. The songs are arrangements of Bulgarian folk songs and original compositions by renowned Bulgarian composer Kiril Todorov - a master of blending folk and jazz into a sublime new a cappella genre.

Colourful mosaic of sounds
The Forte String Quartet
Sarkis Zakarian- piano
19 November, 7:30p.m, St. James’s Piccadilly

Also celebrating their 20th Anniversary this year, New York based The Forte String Quartet is one of the most sought-after chamber ensembles touring, recording and broadcast in the United States as well as in Europe. Their programme will include Shostakovic’s energetic quartet in D major no4, and the WORLD PREMIERE of the quartet commissioned by the festival from the young Bulgarian composer Martin Georgiev. The concert will finish with Schumann’s consummate masterpiece – the Piano Quintet in E Flat Major op44, celebrating the 200th Anniversary of the composer’s birth.

Chamber extravaganza
Sofia Soloists Chamber Orchestra
Vania Vatralova-Stankov – soprano
Kristina Blaumane – violoncello
Ivo Stankov – violin
26 November, 7:30p.m, St. James’s Piccadilly

The premiere Bulgarian chamber orchestra makes its London debut as part of the closing concert of the festival. The distinguished ensemble has performed over 3000 concerts all over the world in their 48 years of history, and have recorded over 60 CDs for BMG, Decca, and Columbia.
The Sofia Soloists will perform two UK PREMIERES – “Dawn” by Dobrinka Tabakova, and “In The Silence of Turned Earth” by Gwyn Pitchard, especially commissioned for the festival.
The concert will also feature the wonderfully melodic songs for soprano and orchestra by Parashkev Hadjiev, and the Piece de resistance of the orchestra’s repertoire – Sergey Prokofiev’s “Fugitive Visions”. The evening will conclude with one of the masterpieces written for a chamber orchestra – Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for strings.

Exhibition "Impromptu"
1 - 14 November 2010, Sophia Art Gallery, Bulgarian Embassy
Private View: Monday, 8 November 2010, 7:30 p.m., Sophia Art Gallery, Bulgarian Embassy

The aim of the exhibition is to showcase a selected number of works form contemporary British and Bulgarian painters and sculptors giving their impressions, influences and intuitive perceptions of Bulgaria.

More information:

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Bulgaria at the London World Film Festival

18.00 Othello
2008 | col | 51 mins | documentary film | dir. Ivan Mladenov

19.45 Song of Songs
2009 | col | 15 mins | short film, drama | dir. Dimitar Radev

20.30 The Light House
2009 | col | 4.50 mins | short film, animation | dir. Velislava Gospodinova

20.45 Forecast
2008 | col | 100 mins | feature film | dir. Zornitsa Sophia

21.00 Roundtable

22.00 Reception in Bloomsbury Theatre Bar

The Bloomsbury Theatre
15 Gordon Street
London WC1H 0AH

More information:

Thursday, 18 November 2010

An evening with the Bulgarian writer Emil Andreev

Emil will be talking in English about his work and the situation contemporary Bulgarian writers find themselves in.
Emil Andreev is one of the stars of contemporary Bulgarian fiction and drama. A master storyteller from Lom on the River Danube, he is the winner of several awards, including the Vick and Helikon prizes for fiction. His first novel, The Glass River has been filmed in Bulgaria with an international cast and has just been released this autumn.
His novels are all set in the present, but as befits a writer born on the Danube they reflect on the confluence of the fragile present with a relentless past. 
In his latest book, Crazy Luka, the eponymous Bulgarian hero pursues his monomaniacal quest for enlightenment through churches and monasteries in Cathar France, Italy and Bulgaria.  A series of objects – an old helmet, a row of pearl buttons and pages torn from a notebook, point to the extraordinary coincidences of life, as a doomed love story emerges from the old Jewish quarter of Vidin in the turbulent 1940s. 

7.30 pm
Bulgarian Embassy
186 -188 Queens Gate
London SW7 5HL

Thursday, 25 November 2010

...And Back from the Baltic to the Balkans -
an ehxibition, presented by Finart

Valeriya Nyamtsova-Georgieva
Anna Adamkiewicz
Nina Krylova
Tolleck Winner

Private View: 25 November 2010, 6.00 p.m. - 9.00 p.m.
Opening times: 25 November - 10 December 2010, 11.00 a.m. - 6.00 p.m.
Sophia Art Gallery
Bulgarian Embassy
186 - 188 Queen's Gate, SW7 5HL

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Book launch: Stefanos Katsikas (ed.), Shifting Identities: Bulgaria and Europe (Anthem Press, 2010)

Speakers: Stefanos Katsikas (Goldsmiths): 'The Europeanization of Bulgarian Society: A Long Lasting Political Project'; Vesselin Dimitrov (LSE): 'The European Union and its New Member States'; Vassilis Monastiriotis (LSE): 'Policy-Making After Accession: Lessons from the Crisis'

The event is organised jointly by the Bulgarian Embassy and the Goldsmiths Balkans Centre

7.00 pm
Bulgarian Embassy
186-188 Queen’s Gate
London SW7 5HL

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