Jury 2015

Vanya Moneva graduated with first-class honours from the National Academy of Music “Pancho Vladigerov” in 1979, in professor Vasil Arnaudov’s class, with “Choir Conducting” field of studies, which marked the beginning of her impressive artistic career.

Throughout her professional career as a choir conductor, Vanya has lead the Women’s Traditional Music Choir of the Bulgarian National Radio, the Choral School of Kazanlak, and many other male, female and children’s choirs, and has gained the much valuable experience which lead her to brilliant professional results and numerous awards and acknowledgements, such as: the “Golden Book” award for her contribution to the development of the Bulgarian culture; the “Golden Staff” award from the Union of the Bulgarian composers; the Echo award by the German music producers for the “Bulgarian Soul” CD – a collaboration with the opera singer Vesselina Katsarova; „Classics in the Other Genres” award by Allegro Vivace, Bulgarian National Radio; „Golden Feather” award for contribution to Bulgarian culture by Classic FM Radio; the Special Prize of „Salon des arts”, and many others.

Vanya Moneva actively works with the Bulgarian composers, provoking them and inspiring them with her creativity and deep knowledge of the choir conducting artistry. Her liking for the Bulgarian folklore as an author takes form of the foundation of the Cosmic Voices female folklore choir. Being the leader of the ensemble for 20 years to date, Vanya has established and strengthened her significance in the music industry. With her innovative ideas she has proven that a female folklore choir can be treated as a brilliant music instrument. She has developed a repertoire policy which brings out and emphasises on the traditional Bulgarian voices’ enigmatic abilities and leads them towards new genre dimensions. This has proven to be her unique professional trait.

Vanya Moneva is one of the brightest names in the Bulgarian choral artistry – she has established herself as a conductor with style, highest professionalism and artistic beauty. Not for nothing was she referred to as “The Bulgarian Karayan in a dress” by the composer professor Krassimir Kyurkchiyski.

Alongside with her choir works, Vanya Moneva is a musical producer in Bulgarian National Radio.

Gheorghi Arnaoudov was born in Sofia, to a well-known family with a strong musical tradition. While attending the Pantcho Vladigerov Academy, Arnaoudov also studied composition in Florence under Brian Ferneyhough, where he explored electronic and concrète music. Upon graduation and completion of his studies abroad, Arnaoudov began establishing a reputation as dedicated composer as well as a theorist. Specializing in modern and postmodern aesthetics, communication and semiotics, he also set himself to exploring ancient and Far Eastern musical forms. To date Arnaoudov has produced numerous symphonies, oratorios, concertos and has won several international prizes. He currently teaches in the “Music” and “Theatre” departments of New Bulgarian University. In 2009 he was appointed associate professor in Composition and Harmony and in 2012 Doctor of Philosophy of the New Bulgarian University. Compared in the beginning to composers such as Scriabin, Messiaen or Part nowadays Arnaoudov is known as one of the most distinctive European composers, creating a music of stasis, a new kind of of intense minimalism “that tells no conventional stories but rather meditates on a idea. His instrumental works have distinguished him as a modernist innovator, one who looks at musical instruments as total items capable of maby sounds, overtones and resonances. Many have commented on the spiritual side of Arnaoudov’s music, and indeed mysticism and ritual are two elements present in much of his work. Also influential has been art, cinema and literature, with sources of inspiration including René Magritte, Tarkovsky, James Joyce or Jorge – Luis Borges.

Valentina Georgieva, PhD is a conductor, music pedagogue, leader of children’s vocal groups, president of the Association “Musical world-Balchik”, creator and artistic director of the International choir festival “Chernomorski zvutsi”.
In 1994 she graduated the Academy of Music, Dance and Fine Arts in Plovdiv, where she studied conducting with the Associate Professor Nikola Lipov.

In the period 2000-2002 she specialized choral conducting under professor Liliya Gyuleva at the National Academy of Music ”Pancho Vladigerov” in Sofia.
Received her PhD in 2013 at the New Bulgarian University in Sofia for the topic “The songs for homogeneous formations by Stefan Dragostinov, recreated for mixed choir” with director of studies professor Elisaveta Valchinova-Chendova DsC.

Dr Valentina Georgieva is an active participant in international choral – conducting courses, a member of jury in national and international festivals, winner of the “Socially active person of the year” in three consecutive years, a Board member of the Bulgarian choral union.

As a conductor of “Chernomorski Zvutsi” mixed choir (since 1998) Dr Valentina Georgieva annually has taken part in numerous competitions and festivals in Spain, Greece, Macedonia, Germany, Italy, Serbia, Croatia, Turkey, Czech Republic, Romania and she is a prize winner at national and international forums.

As a leader of “Chernomorski zvutsi” mixed choir, she has four CDs released in 1998, 2004, 2011 and 2014.

Leaning on the tradition of Bulgarian choral performing arts, Dr Valentina Georgieva keeps the values and builds the new history of hundred-year-old choir “Chernomorski zvutsi” in accordance with the trends in the worldwide choral art.