Archives for February2016

Leon Daniel

leon2“Look at me. I am you.”

If someone had asked me a day before whose these words were, I would have immediately answered that “I am you.” are the emblematic words of a quick-tempered and sarcastic Beckstrom, the Swedish criminologist from my favorite crime TV series. He uses them to provoke suspects to admit to their crimes by speaking on their behalf as if he was in their heads and saw what they had done.

These words, however, belong to Leon Daniel. They remain his signature in the memories of some actors whose talent he encouraged on stagein an equally eccentric way as the Swedish Beckstrom encourages the intuition for investigation.

leon4Leon Avram Daniel a is Bulgarian stage director of Jewish origin, born in Rousse. He graduated from the State Theatre Institute in St. Petersburg, Russia, known as Leningrad and the Soviet Union respectively back then. He started his career at Drama Theatre in Rousse until 1957 when he moved to Bourgas and spent the next three years there.

Despite having been exposed to Russian influence, Leon Daniel asserted his creative ideas and became known as opposing the communist government. It was in Bourgas when together with three other stage directors at the Bourgass Theatre, he formed the so called The Great Four. During the Communist regime in the late ‘60s they staged for the first time authors such as Brecht, Dürrenmatt, Mrozhek and Sartre whose plays were not allowed in Bulgaria at the time. In this way, The Great Four created a new stage language that opposed the canon of socialist realism speech on stage.

Critics define his work as a whole epoch in the development of the national theatrical art: “The theater of Leon Daniel is he himself, his own personality. He created a school and was a remarkable pedagogue without teaching at the National Theatre Academy. He was relocated for his ideas were challenging the regime and moved from theatre to theatre in the country and yet he indisputably remained a person that stood up for talent and the values of art. ”

leon1Next, he worked at the National Radio, the Bulgarian Army Theatre, Sofia Theatre, and many others. He was the director of one movie and three documentaries. He received numerous awards at international and national stage contests including an honorary Ikar for overall activity and Askeer for overall contribution to performing arts. He wrote papers, publications, and books. The play “Pygmalion” by G. B. Shaw which he directed is being performed in Sofia for a 10th consecutive year.

He is the father of the Bulgarian painter Andrei Daniel and the grandfather of the Bulgarian writer Ida Daniel. He died in Sofia in 2008. Among his favorite actors and friends who share his artistic ideas, are Yosif Sarchadjiegv, Iliya Dobrev and others.


The photos in the article are not owned by this website.

March Music Days Festival

didie-lokwoodWhen the March Music Days Festival was first held in Rousse in 1961, hardly did anyone imagine that 55 years later the city would still be the venue to attract international jazz and classic music performers every March for two weeks.

The March Music Days Festival is one of the oldest and most recognized festival stages in Bulgaria. Ever since its beginning, it has taken place annually in March and hosted some of the world’s most famous artists, such as Dmitri Shostakovich and Max Richter, among some of the renowned orchestras like the Bucarest Philharmonic Orchestra, the St. Peterburg Philharmonic Orchestra, the Prague Philharmonia and many others. koeran-quartetThe Festival presents young talented musicians from around the world and promotes the role of music in cultivating and sustaining culture and respect for art.

The Festival has been awarded the international European Festival Label (EFFE Label) by the European Commission and the Europe for Festivals Association for the years 2015 and 2016. The program for this year’s March Music Days Festival is quite rich as it features, for a second year in a row, a Junior edition, intended for children, as well as a number of cultural events at the Art Gallery and other places, which accompany the main music program. junior
Among the participants in 2016 are the Academy of Ancient Music, the Romanian National Symphony Orchestra, Gli Accordati, the Czech Philharmonic Collegium, the Rousse Philharmonic Orchestra and others.

Check our Events page to see the program of the March Music Days.

Read more about the March Music Days Festival here and go to their official Facebook page.

To get the feel, listen to some of the previous years’ performances as well.

The photos in the article are not owned by this website.

2019 European Capital of Culture Candidate

sand4 As you may already know, the European Capital of Culture is a city, designated by the European Union for a period of one calendar year, during which it organizes a series of cultural events with a strong European dimension. Preparing a European Capital of Culture can be an opportunity for the city to generate considerable cultural, social and economic benefits and it can help foster urban regeneration, change the city’s image and raise its visibility and profile on an international scale. (Source: Wikipedia).

Rousse was one of the contestants from Bulgaria, respectively Europe, during the latest competition that took place last year (2015), and challenged other participants under its “Rousse – City of the Free Spirit” representative leitmotif. The Free Spirit City Municipal Foundation was found. It desired to further promote a broad cultural spectrum of events in the city and encourage young talents. As a result, in 2015 the Foundation organized about 150 cultural and art events, supported 5 talented children and 10 creative teams from Ruse, established partnerships with local businesses and received a number of donations to the aim of imposing wider social effects and strong recognition of the cause. vintage-car2

I am not quite enthusiastic to admit that the city where, according to the state officials, the free spirit resides, lost the battle, but you know—life’s a motley crew of possibilities! In a nutshell, Rousse didn’t pass the first round of nominations and in the end Plovdiv, another great Bulgarian city, was pronounced the final winner, but… that’s another story. However, the contest participation itself brought about new events in Rousse, such as the 2015 Green Rock Fest featuring the legendary rock band Nazareth, the International Sand Sculpture Festival, the First Vintage Car Parade, and the International Ice Sculpture Festival.

Watch the official video that represented the city at the international community here.

Read more about the topic here and on the official Facebook page here.

Below are some photos from the major cultural events in Rousse held in 2015 while the city was aiming to become the 2019 European Capital of Culture.

The photos in the article are not owned by this website.

Tereza Todorova

tereza2 This 11-year old This 11-year old diva has been working at one of the most famous evening television show programs broadcast on one of our national televisions for the last two years. Yet, I hadn’t heard of her until two weeks ago. And I did so by chance while searching through related articles on a related topic. Hey, Mayor, so much for your campaign on promoting young talents outside the comfortable realm of Rousse. If I were you, I would fire half of the PR crew for failing to promote this incredible voice.

Tereza took up singing when she was two years old. At four she started performing on stage in the city and her talent didn’t go unnoticed—a teacher at the Municipal Center for Art and Culture began to train her for a professional singer. At five she ventured the piano and took her first lesson so that when she became 6, she was admitted to the National School of Arts in Rousse. Currently, she also dances and, as they say, enjoys creating the choreography on her own.

She was brought to national fame in 2013 when the talent-searchers of the Slavi’s Show, who were looking for a girl to accompany their youngest show performer on stage—a boy telling jokes—came across her. Throughout her career she has won numerous awards at home and abroad, and in 2015 she went to New York to play the piano in Carnegie Hall after ranking second in the American Protégé international competition. During the same year another international recognition followed—the one from the Premio Accademia di Roma, where she got an unprecedented 11-point result at the Cantagiro competition.

tereza4 I watched part of an interview with her, held in the presence of her mother. Instead of some childish gibberish that I was half-expecting due to her infancy, this beautiful young lady presented herself in such a charming and respect-commanding manner, that unwillingly, while watching her, I was engulfed in what she was saying and was smiling too, forgetting all the evil in the world. Her confidence and spontaneity in front of the camera, and her avid and sparkling eyes with inspiration conquer you and speak of a great potential and talent.

Listen to her latest song here. Again on you can listen to her incredible cover of Camino, a song originally sung by Lily Ivanova and which won Tereza one of the greatest recognition by the Italian public.

Read more about Tereza here.

The photos in the article are not owned by this website.