Monthly Archives: April 2015

Family of the month May 2015

05.2015

Family Of the Month
“Going to Pillow Concerts is my way to reach music”

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Have you ever heard of Момо, the Michael Ende’s character? We met her at the Bach Pillow Concert. Little Momo brings back to people the time that’s being stolen from them. With the help of Secundis Minutius Hora, the Master of time, and his wonderful turtle Cassiopeia, Momo stands against the Grey Men – the thieves of human time, and frees the world from their dark power. Actually, this is a story from the favourite children’s book of Tea and Hristo – our Family of the month for May, and Momo is the nickname of their little daughter Samuila. We are talking with Tea and Momo because Hristo is currently abroad, but this doesn’t stop him to be a passionate visitor of the Pillow Concert, whenever he can.

MODO: How old is Momo?
Tea: In Мay she will turn two. Her birthday comes at the end of the month. I was just telling her: “You know what Momo? In May there will be a special book for you!”
MODO: How did you find out about the Pillow Concert?
Tea: Friends of ours are visiting you, they have a daughter a bit older than Momo. Actually we were discussing with them what could we do in the dark cold winter weekends with the children and where we can go with them, and that is how we found you.
MODO: When did this happen?
Tea: I looked it up and found out that the first time we came to a Pillow concert was at the beginning of December 2013. Our first concert was with oboe and piano. A guy from Greece was playing the oboe. It was wonderful! Momo was very young – she was still on my breast and was cuddling up to me and Hristo. We were able to enjoy the whole concert. Then I remember the concert at the Military Club, which was a huge ​​success. Then it comes one of my favourite ones – Pillow concert for flute, harp and marimba. Generally we come whenever we can. We are also a next-door neighbour to the Union of the architects’ building. Sometimes we joke that besides pillows we come in slippers and pyjamas here too.
MODO: What do you like about us?
Tea: I can tell you that personally I am absolutely happy with the Pillow Concerts. Momo and I are often left all by ourselves. I take care of her by myself and I don’t have the opportunity to go to any concert for adults. So you could say that going to the Pillow Concerts is my way to reach music. It is great that in some way I can share this with the little one.
MODO: Do you listen to classical music in your everyday life?
Tea: Yes, I do listen to classical music and I miss it very much. Why do all concerts for adults start at 19:00? Couldn’t some of them start at 21:00, when kids would be already asleep and their grandmas can stay with them? Going to Pillow Concert helps me catch up with this. Another thing that I love is the free format which truly allows entire families to attend the event, no matter what age are their children and how noisy, quiet or calm. Besides, I’m sure that when children grow up they will become true admirers of the classical music.
MODO: Tell us more about your interest in classical music: you are in the musician profession, or you just love to listen to music?
Tea: I am a biologist by education. I work for a non-governmental organization Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds. So professionally I am far away from music, but I have loved classical music since I was a kid, and jazz too.
MODO: Where is this love coming from? Do you have any childhood memories connected to music?
Tea: I think I love classical music because at home my parents were listening to it and I grew up with three types of LPs: records of fairy tales, jazz and classical music. When I became older my parents brought me to concerts. But I’ve never really had serious knowledge and I think that I became a music fan along with Momo – I keep all of the Pillow Concerts’ programmes. In the evenings, when possible, I look up on the web for more information about the musical pieces, and listen to all of them again. When Momo was very young, we remained for the lessons that you used to make – they were great. It’s a pity that you don’t do them anymore.
MODO: Have you noticed what attracts Momo’s attention during the Pillow Concerts, or which is her favourite instrument?
Tea: I think that the percussions are our instruments and also music that is rhythmical, melodicр and you can dance on it, for example the music of the Brass quintet. O, now that we speak of, I remember the Chopin Pillow Concert with the waltzes! It was wonderful – she didn’t stop dancing. So it is not an instrument but the music that has an impact on her.

Tea likes our magazine (the predecessor of Artelezhka). Through it she was introduced to Modo’s different projects and to interesting facts from the world of music. She has chosen the profession of biologist because of the opportunity it gives her to travel and to be outdoor. The musical journeys we do this season helps her to enrich her musical culture. Tea runs away from the city whenever she can – whether to visit Momo’s father, in Italy or in the Eastern Rhodope Mountains, it doesn’t matter. It is important for the place to have rich culture, history and delicious food.

Tea: I constantly learn new things from the Pillow Concerts. My specialties are bats and birds, so today the music for the blackbird was very interesting. (We were talking about Bach Pillow Concert – MODO note). It was a treat for me, just great! I educate myself musically alongside the kids, and I am confident that if Momo was not born, I would not be here. I wouldn’t spare every Sunday to come and then to read and discover new things about music.
МODO: Do you want Momo to go into the music field when she grow up?
Tea: I would like very much when she grows up and if she wants to, to begin playing an instrument. No matter what and no matter for how long. It would be nice, if we don’t press children for achievements and to become musicians but to simply give them the chance to contact with music. I found out that children in high schools do not learn arts, unless they attend a school with a special programme! This is shocking! For instance in a city like Russe, there is a tradition in learning a musical instrument, and almost all children play piano, or at least they have had some lessons. This is a treasure! No matter what you will do after that, how far you’ve gone in your training, and how accomplished you have become. I believe that every child should have that opportunity.
МODO: If you have to make you own Pillow Concert – what will it be?
Tea: A Pillow Concert with students from the Music School. I think children will be fascinated and will stick to the small musicians! I imagine that you can invite them to present different instruments – something like the Double Bass Pillow Concert with Svoboda Bozduganova and her two students. At that concert, besides being very pleasant, she also gave an example. It felt very nice how these great musicians teach young people and give them opportunities to express themselves. Also, I think that kids react differently when they see a child playing. In the last or penultimate issue of the magazine one dad said that he will also sign up for piano lessons. This is an idea! I can follow suit.
МODO: Wish us something!
Tea: I wish you to continue on the same path and to have a very successful summer in which we can enjoy beautiful music outdoors. And your personal projects to be as successful as MODO’s projects!

Interview by Didi Brankova, Pillow Concerts’ coordinator.
Photography by Minko Minev, http://minkominev.com



Hungarian Pillow Concert

31.05.2015

Sunday, May 31th, 2015
11:00 and 17:00
Union of the architects in Bulgaria
Sofia,11 Krakra Str.,

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TICKETS HERE→

As the final concert for this season, the Hungarian one will focus on our audience’s most favourite thing – the dances. We are starting with a Jewish dance by the Hungarian Béla Kovács where the clarinet will demonstrate its unlimited ability to calm down to the quietest dynamics and to greatly excite like a full orchestra. As a soloist we will hear this instrument’s master, Yavor Dobrev, already familiar to our audience as a member of the Windy quintet. For the eager little feet we have prepared several Hungarian dances by the German Johannes Brahms, as well as the Romanian Folk Dances by another remarkable Hungarian – Bela Bartok.

Apart from Yavor, we will also hear the boys from the Street quartet who recently brought to us the Czech music during the Dvorak Pillow Concert. Ivo, Vesko, Hristo and Pepi are at perfect ease with their violins, viola and cello. After the concert, they will show their most passionate and curious admirers what a challenge it is to master a string instrument. Veneta Neynska will join the predominantly male company on the piano, at the programme’s key moments.



Gallery


TICKETS

Online:
Family Ticket – 30 leva

At the concert:
Parent – 20 leva
Child – 5 leva
Max price for a family – 35 leva


Performers:

Yavor Dobrev, clarinet
Veneta Neynska, piano
Street Quartet:
Ivo Danailov, violin
Veselin Dimitrov, violin
Hristo Arolski, viola
Petar Kushlev, cello

yavor-hungarian-pillow

YAVOR DOBREV

First breath: taken in Sofia
First music lessons: at the age of five (piano)
First love: trombone, followed by clarinet
First Alma Mater: The National Academy of Music Prof. Pancho Vladigerov, followed by Le Conservatoire de musique de Genève.
First… clarinetist in the orchestra of the Sofia Opera and Ballet.

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STREET QUARTET

Together: From 2010.
The Name: The four musicians are often performing on the street which gave them the idea to call themselves Street quartet.
Repertoire: The Street quartet has participated in a number of different projects – from performing at various musical formats, through playing on the street, cocktail and wedding music, to serious classical concerts in Sofia and throughout Bulgaria.
Members of a musical community: All of them are part of the New Symphony Orchestra, where they initially met. Hristo and Ivo are members of the Bulgarian National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Vesko works at the National Musical Theatre’s Orchestra and Pepi – at the Blagoevgrad Philharmony.


TICKETS HERE >

Musical programme

Hector Berlioz

Hungarian March from The Damnation of Faust

Johannes Brahms

Hungarian Dance No 1
Hungarian Dance No 2
Hungarian Dance No 5
Hungarian Dance No 17

Béla Kovács

“Homage to Manuel de Falla” for solo clarinet
“Sholem alekhem, rov Feidman!”

Béla Bartók

Romanian Folk Dances



Program, May 10th, 2015

10:00 Pillow workshop – Free admission
11:00 Pillow concert – Tickets here

16:00 Pillow workshop – Free admission
17:00 Pillow concert – Tickets here


workshop-pillow-concerts

On Sunday, May 31th, one hour before each concert, there will be a Pillow Workshop where our little guests will be involved in arts and crafts together with the Creative team Onche Bonche. The admission for the Pillow workshop is free.


Operetta Pillow Concert

10.05.2015

Sunday, May 10th, 2015
11:00 and 17:00
Union of the architects in Bulgaria
Sofia,11 Krakra Str.,

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TICKETS HERE→

For the Pillow Concerts the month of Hungary starts with a event dedicated to the operetta and love as a main theme in most of the Hungarian works in this genre. After WWII, Imre Kálmán’s music is a real soother for the Viennese citizens’ tortured souls. Although most of his works were written in the Austrian capital, he still remains one of the most remarkable Hungarian composers. His works Countess Maritza, The Csárdás Princess, A Little Dutch Girl and The Bayadere are loved and enjoyed throughout the world, including in Bulgaria.

Our audience will have the opportunity to enjoy the enormous talent of Dorotheya Doroteeva and Alexander Mutafchiyski. Dorotheya has already performed on our stage – in the Opera concert, the very first one for this season. Alexander is among the great stars of the Musical theatre in Sofia. The two soloists will bring out their voices in the virtuoso operetta duets accompanied by pianist Veneta Neynska. The programme is one of the most exciting and life-affirming ever presented in the Pillow Concerts.



Gallery


TICKETS

Online:
Family Ticket – 30 leva

At the concert:
Parent – 20 leva
Child – 5 leva
Max price for a family – 35 leva


Performers:

Alexander Mutafchiyski , baritone
Dorotheya Doroteeva , soprano
Veneta Neynska, piano

Alma Mater: Graduated in piano from the National School of Music Lyubomir Pipkov, and opera singing from the National Academy of Music Prof. Pancho Vladigerov.
Scholarships:
Four year scholarship at an opera studio in Graz, Austria;
Scholarship at Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Rome where she studied under Mirella Parutto, Renata Scotto, Anna Vandi and Cesare Scarto;
Raina Kabaivanska Scholarship at Modena;
Repertoire: La bohème, Das Rheingold and Götterdämmerung at Sofia National Opera and Ballet, and others.
Participation in Contests:
Francisco Vinas Competition in Barcelona, Ferruccio Tagliavini Competition in Deutschlandsberg, Comunita Europea Competition in Spoleto, Ghena Dimitrova Competition in Pleven, Elena Nikolai Competition in Panagyurishte, The Rose of Evterpa in Karlovo, and others.
Artistic Tours: In Germany, Austria, Italy, China, Russia, etc.

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Alma Mater: National Academy of Music Prof. Pancho Vladigerov in Sofia
First Teachers: Prof. Lily Stefanova and Prof. Pavel Gerdjikov.
Debut Performances: Cosi Fan Tutte by Mozart and L’elisir d’amore by Donizetti (on the stage of Varna Opera Theatre).
Soloist of: National Music Theatre Stefan Makedonski.
Repertoire: Gypsy Love and The Merry Widow, by Franz Lehar; Countess Maritza and The Csardas Princess by Imre Kálmán, A Night in Venice and Die Fledermaus by Johann Strauss; La Belle Helene by Offenbach, and many others.
Unforgettable performances: Emcee in Cabaret and Amos in Chicago by John Kander
Barnaby in Hello, Dolly! by Jerry Herman, Pontius Pilate and Judas Iscariot in Jesus Christ Superstar, and Munkustrap in Cats by Andrew Lloyd Webber; and others.
Recordings:
with the Bulgarian National Television and Bulgarian National Radio.
Artistic Tours: solo tours and with the troupe of the National Music Theatre in Bulgaria, Turkey, Greece, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Luxembourg, China.



Veneta Neynska (piano) has received her musical education at the National School of Music in Sofia, the USC Thorton School of Music in Los Angeles and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. Among her numerous prizes are the first prize at the Beethoven Hradec Competition in Czech Republic and the third prize at the Alexander Tansman Competition in Lodz, Poland. She has been a soloist to the Janáček Philharmonic Orchestra and the Lodz Philharmonic Orchestra under Jakub Zidek, Rostislav Hališka and the Swiss conductor Luca Pfaff. Among her most recent performances are recitals at the prestigious Bulgarian festivals “Apollonia” in Sozopol and “Piano Extravaganza” in Sofia.


VenetaNeynska



TICKETS HERE >

Musical programme

Arias and duets from the following operettas:

Franz Lehár

The Count of Luxembourg

Imre Kálmán

Countess Maritza
The Csárdás Princess
The Little Dutch Girl
Die Bajadere

Pal Abraham

Ball at the Savoy



Program, May 10th, 2015

10:00 Pillow workshop – Free admission
11:00 Pillow concert – Tickets here

16:00 Pillow workshop – Free admission
17:00 Pillow concert – Tickets here


workshop-pillow-concerts

On Sunday, May 10th, one hour before each concert, there will be a Pillow Workshop where our little guests will be involved in arts and crafts together with the Creative team Onche Bonche. The admission for the Pillow workshop is free.


April’s Family of the Month

04.2015

Family Of the Month
“Have I really never missed a concert?”

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Pillow Concerts are at the end of their fifth season and while looking through the pictures and memories of our past concerts we notice that there is one face present in almost all of them – our absolute record holder for season 2013/2014 with not a single concert missed – Snejana Ivanova. We decided to invite her with her husband Temelko, and young Atanas at our MODO music house so that we can get to know better some of our most dedicated fans, which we unanimously chose as family of the month.

Snejana: Have I really never missed a single concert? Well, I always make sure to attend whenever I can.
Temelko: It’s strange that there wasn’t a concert at the times when we were sick. But I am certain that we missed one for sure, because we were there at the entrance but Atanas had a bad cough and we decided on not going in.
Didi: Which was the first Pillow Concert that you attended?
Snejana: I don’t remember. It was so long ago – a year and a half ago, maybe even more.
Didi: How did you find out about our Pillow concerts?
Snejana: As all parents nowadays, I too am very interested in the concept of early child development. I believe that music can, in a way, boost child development – be it classical, or some other type of music. So I started looking for different music activities. I was absolutely terrified by some of the ones I found. While doing my search for music centres on the Internet I came by the Pillow Concerts and Modo and we decided to try you out.
Didi: What do you like most about us?
Snejana: I like that there are no frowning old ladies, looking angrily at my child whenever he decides to get up and walk around. No one ever brings him back to me, looking reproachfully upon me that at the age of 18 months I haven’t taught him to sit at one place without moving for an hour. I love the small details too – children can draw and paint, and not just on plain white paper, but on note-shaped sheets. The kid really has a lot of fun and he loves the Workshop. There he can do some of the things, others not, but he is still having fun.
Didi: Which one is your favourite Pillow Concert?
Temelko: She’s been to more of them than me.
Snejana: The ones with non-traditional instruments. My favourite one is probably the Pillow Concert with flute, harp and marimba. I’d never seen a marimba with my own eyes before, and thanks to the Pillow Concerts I did. We see the piano everywhere, but not those non-traditional instruments. I like those concerts the most, because they are different.
Didi: Do you have any favourite music instruments?
Snejana: Atanas pays attention to the instruments that he doesn’t know if he has the chance to reach them. (after the Pillow Concerts, children can play on the instruments that have been part of the concert’s programme – note:Modo)
Temelko: I like the piano and maybe something a bit more electronic – a synthesizer. And the violin, as well, even though I can’t play. We have a guitar at home, too, but I am waiting for Atanas to grow up a little more and I’m planning for us to learn to play together.

Our conversation moves away from the Pillow concerts to music and its influence on people as a whole. Snejana and Temelko met at University, where they were both studying Informatics, and have been together ever since. They may seem as traditionalists at first sight, as Atanas was named after his granddad. However, they are very curious and open to try out new ideas.

Temelko: I usually have a bigger affinity towards music, because even though I am in the sciences, I’ve played the piano quite a lot. I love listening to music and we have a piano at home. I want my child to have some knowledge of music; it will give him a general cultural background. More or less music is also mathematics. After all, we are the people that would give him some advice and guidance in life, so that he can later decide for himself what path to take in life. I think it’s better for him to have more choices, than less.
Snejana: I wouldn’t insist on my child becoming a musician or learning to play the piano or any other musical instrument – if he wants to, that’s fine. I just want him to be an emotionally well-developed person – a good human. And all this really has an effect on him – I was nicely surprised by Atanas’s reaction when he found out that I couldn’t play the piano. “Mom, how is it possible that you don’t play the piano? Don’t worry, come, I’ll show you!’ – he said to me, pressing my fingers to the piano’s keys, playing the notes to a children’s song that he knows. It only shows that music has become a part of his life. We often listen to Vivaldi’s Four Seasons at home and he draws while listening. During the Spring movement he is very concentrated painting. However, when the picture on the computer screen changes and the Summer part begins, I hear him saying “Summer! Leave me alone!” There clearly is a point in doing musical activities.
Didi: Talking about musical activities, how did you found out about the Little musician?
Snejana: Atanas attended a study center, called Music Circle with Tsveti. When it stopped we found out that it already exists in a similar form. I want him to get to know different musical instruments, so we have most of them at home. Whenever his grandmas come to visit, he assigns each one of them an instrument and starts conducting them as Tsveti taught him – play louder here, play quieter here, etc.
Didi: Do you play together with him?
Temelko: For me playing the piano is a way to escape the reality, to relax. I try playing together with him sometimes, but I’m not the best at teaching. I just don’t have the patience to repeat the same thing over and over again.
Snejana: Atanas would always wait for a moment when his father is not at home to sneak in the piano room saying “Now I will play!”, and starts plucking the keys in a way, which would make his dad mad.
Temelko: I can always detect whenever he has played – he always leaves his mark.

Didi: And what is your opinion on the Pillow Concert travels that we are doing this season?
Snejana: They definitely have an effect. I couldn’t make it to the last concert and I sent them together. When they got home, Atanas told me that today the concert was about Poland. (The interview was conducted after the Chopin Pillow Concert- note: Modo)

Apart from the Pillow concerts, Snejana, Temelko and Atanas participate in The Little Musician Programme and were one of the first families to celebrate a Musical Birthday with us. At the end of our conversation, they wished us luck and advised us to start recording the concerts so that we can watch them again later and remember them better.

Interview by Didi Brankova, Pillow Concerts’ coordinator.
Photography by Minko Minev, Todor Atanasov and Hristo Boyadziev



German Pillow Concert

19.04.2015

Sunday, April 19th, 2015
11:00 and 17:00
Union of the architects in Bulgaria
Sofia,11 Krakra Str.,

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TICKETS HERE→

Germany is a country where classical music is definitely of high esteem and a number of great composers were born there – Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Mendelssohn, and Schumann among others. One of the most amazing orchestras in the world is based there, too – the Berlin Philharmonic. The honourable seats in our German concert will be taken by our beloved brass quintet.

The programme offers an array of works by almost all of the most famous German composers. Beethoven will not be as serious and dark as usual, and Mendelssohn will offer a march but not the wedding one this time. Brahms went on composing 21 Hungarian dances and the fifth one will give us a hint as to where the music will take us next month. We can’t possibly miss the German opera music – Weber’s this time, and at the end we’ll hear a few popular German songs where we can sing and dance along.


Gallery


TICKETS

Online:
Family Ticket – 30 leva

At the concert:
Parent – 20 leva
Child – 5 leva
Max price for a family – 35 leva


Performers:

Yan Dunev, Trumpet
Konstantinos Gkiavouris, Trumpet
Mihail Mihailov, French horn
Javor Kostov, Trombone
Georgi Iliev, Tuba


TICKETS HERE >

Musical programme

Ludwig van Beethoven
Turkish March from “The Ruins of Athens”
Symphony No. 7, mov. IV
Johannes Brahms
Hungarian Dance No. 5
Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdi
War March of the Priests from “Athalia”
Carl Maria von Weber
Huntsmen’s Chorus from the opera “Der Freischütz”
Thomas Graf
German Songs
Happy Variations
Wir Sind Allerbester Laune
Bavarian March



Program, April 19th, 2015

10:00 Pillow workshop – Free admission
11:00 Pillow concert – Tickets here

16:00 Pillow workshop – Free admission
17:00 Pillow concert – Tickets here


workshop-pillow-concerts

On Sunday, April 19th, one hour before each concert, there will be a Pillow Workshop where our little guests will be involved in arts and crafts together with the Creative team Onche Bonche. The admission for the Pillow workshop is free.