Saturday, 26 July 2014

The director Plamen Kartaloff received the highest insignia of honour of the Wagner Societies

A festive atmosphere accompanied the opening of the Summer Wagner Week at Sofia Opera and Ballet. The space in front of the theatre, arranged with much taste, welcomed guests from over 10 countries from all over the world. Music lovers from Germany, Great Britain, the Netherlands, South Africa, Australia, Russia, China, Japan and the USA arrived specially for the repeated performance of Richard Wagner’s “Der Ring des Nibelungen”. The news about the success of last year’s production of Sofia Opera and Ballet reached the Wagner admirers all over the world. More than an hour before the performance of “Das Rheingold” – the first title from Richard Wagner’s tetralogy, impatient Wagner admirers of many languages surrounded the theatre. They welcomed with applauses the short music fragments performed by the brass section of the orchestra of Sofia Opera and Ballet. Greetings received also the author of the stylish exhibition arranged in the Opera’s lobby – the 17-year old Reni Ninova, graduate of the National School of Fine Arts in Sofia, and her teacher and author of the concept – Alexandra Gogova. The exhibition is dedicated to Wagner’s tetralogy and presents visions for covers and designs for posters.

During two and a half hours the full hall witnessed “Das Rheingold” with great interest. Richard Trimborn, author of the music training for the tetralogy, with excitement and without a break beating the time followed the spectacle from the director’s box. A storm of applause and shouts “Bravo” sent off the inspired play of the soloists Nikolay Petrov, Svetozar Rangelov, Hrisimir Damyanov, Daniel Ostretsov, Biser Georgiev, Plamen Papazikov, Stefan Vladimirov, Petar Buchkov, Rumyana Petrova, Silvana Pravcheva, Blagovesta Mekki-Tsvetkova, Irina Zhekova, Dorotea Doroteeva and Dimitrinka Raycheva. Many compliments received also the performance of the orchestra, conducted by Erich Wächter. Visibly agitated, on the stage appeared Josef Lienhart, Honorary President of the International Association of Wagner Societies and President of the Wagner Society in Freiburg. On behalf of the newly-elected President of the association Thomas Krakow he awarded the director Plamen Kartaloff a golden badge and a flag with the logo “W” – the highest insignia of honour for exceptional achievements in the promotion of Wagner’s music. After thanking the present spectators for their attendance and for the interest, Maestro Kartaloff reminded of the words of the young Wagner “My place is outside Germany”, which became an occasion for Josef Lienhart to add jokingly that maybe the great composer had Bulgaria in mind. The Bulgarian production of “Der Ring” will certainly receive still wider echoes and press reports abroad, after Wagner admirers have shared enthusiastically that what they saw in Sofia excelled some of Bayreuth productions. Their delights before the director Plamen Kartaloff expressed also admirers of the composer who have arrived from Great Britain and who are expecting with impatience the next performances from Wagner’s tetralogy in Sofia.

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