About Pancho Vladigerov

“Pancho Vladigerov is one of the most distinguished, most vivid, most temperamental, and most prominent representatives of Bulgarian music culture. His name as a composer and performer has long transcended the borders of our country. There is no symphonic orchestra, no famous conductor for the past thirty years who has not been tempted to include Pancho Vladigerov’s compositions in their repertoire.

Always inspired, always confident about what he creates, with both feet on the ground of the country that he loves and most ardently praises, Vladigerov turns everything he touches into music. A natural talent, dedicated to music since his earliest childhood days, he constantly creates his new, astounding works – his wonderful “variations of themes and colours”, which form one of the biggest treasures of our musical heritage. There is no type of music that Pancho Vladigerov has not created; his exemplary performance, combined with his considerable gift, is something one sees only in the best musicians.

His unforgettable works, our national pride and glory, shall always possess the charm and freshness of his big and passionate imagination…”  — Nikolay Liliev, part of the poet’s speech at the celebration of the composer’s 50th anniversary, Sofia, 1949.

Nikolay Liliev is a Bulgarian Symbolist poet, playwright at the Ivan Vazov National Theatre for the period 1934 – 1960. Co-author, along with the famous Bulgarian writer Fani Popova-Mutafova, of the libretto for Tsar Kaloyan – Pancho Vladigerov’s only opera.

About the composer

“Powerful harmony, a spring of multiple sounds, colourful orchestral tunes – all these demonstrate his music, but what is more – a person who makes the best of an extraordinary gift” — Prof. Joseph Marx, Austrian composer, theoretician and music critic (from his review of the Tsar Kaloyan opera by Pancho Vladigerov, published in the Neues Wiener Journal newspaper, 3 May 1937)

“… My basis of playing is, you may call it, Vladigerov-style. He knows the piano perfectly. Pancho Vladigerov is my teacher, to whom I owe everything – please note – everything. I will always be grateful to him. I am proud to talk about, in both interviews and TV conversations in all countries where I have had my concerts, as well as in the annotations on the records and the programs, the unforgettable “first” period in my home country – my studies with Pancho Vladigerov. He is a genius with the soul of a child, which is a sign of his inexhaustible life energy, reflected mostly in his works. He is a world-famous composer. His music is so Bulgarian, with so many unique accents in it! His works have been widely praised every time I have performed them – both in Europe and in America.” – excerpt from an interview with Alexis Weissenberg, a master pianist.

“My dear Pancho! It is my pleasure to inform you that I listened to your second concert… As usual, your music is full of life, of vibrant colours and stands out with its rich temperament. You compose like a 20-year-old man! Well done!…” — excerpt from a letter of the famous violinist David Oistrakh to Pancho Vladigerov, 16 November 1971.