Gega New Music House has in its catalogue many recordings of the great Bulgarian composer Pancho Vladigerov (1899-1978) performed by renowned artists, and two of the releases contain his works only (GD 203 and GD 239). This is yet another release entirely of works by the composer, performed by the talented pianist Krassimir Gatev (1944-2008). He graduated the Sofia High School of Music as a student of Assoc. Prof. Lydia Kouteva and the “P.I. Tchaikovsky” Moscow Conservatory as a student of Prof. Yakov Flier. He was a laureate of the most prestigious piano competitions: in Helsinki – 1962; “Marguerite Long” – Paris, 1963; “Queen Elizabeth” – Brussels, 1964; Montreal – 1968; “Van Cliburn” – Fort Worth, Texas, USA, 1973. Gatev gave numerous recital programmess and appeared as soloist of leading orchestras in Bulgaria, in many countries in Europe, Asia and the USA, in prestigious concert halls, such as: Tivoli in Copenhagen, La Scala di Milano, and the Great hall of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. His repertoire includes works from all music epochs, including works by Bulgarian composers. But it is with the utmost consideration and respect that Krassimir Gatev regards the works of Pancho Vladigerov. Their decades-long friendship and creative collaboration is well-known. The composer dedicated to him Four Frescoes – 1977 and Three Bagatelles – 1978, which are included in this programme. The rest of the works were composed earlier. The Variations on the Bulgarian folk song “Gorda Stara Planina” (“Proud Balkan Mountain”) were written in 1916, when the composer was 17 years old. He wrote Three Piano Pieces, Op. 15 in 1922, Classic and Romantic in 1931, and Episodes and Aquarelles were written consecutively in 1941 and in 1942. Even though composed over a large period of time (some of them during his stay in Germany until 1932), they have many characteristics that feature his whole work: distinctive style, richness of sound expression, brilliant national intonations, rich harmony, technical complexity, virtuosity ... Krassimir Gatev’s recordings unite them all and, as the composer himself notes about the performance of his piano works, they “… created a gold standard for my own personal view and aesthetics in regards to the interpretation of my compositions.”


  • Track Listing

    Variations on the Bulgarian folk song “Gorda Stara Planina” (“Proud Balkan Mountains”), Op. 3 (1978)

    [1] Theme, Andante sostenuto 1:44

    [2] Variation I, Moderato 1:52

    [3] Variation II, Con moto mosso 1:35

    [4] Variation III, Agitato drammatico 2:20

    [5] Variation IV, Moderato 1:46

    [6] Variation V, Andantino 1:59

    [7] Variation VI, Allegro marcato 0:57

    [8] Variation VII, Allegro tempestoso 1:27

    [9] Variation VIII, Andante lentando 2:33

    [10] Variation IX, Con moto mosso poco animato 1:32

    [11] Variation X, Moderato risoluto (quasi rapsodico) 2:13

    [12] Variation XI (Finale), Adagio maestoso festivamente 4:26

    From Three Piano Pieces, Op. 15 (1979)

    [13] Prelude, Agitato 4:43

    Classic and Romantic, Op. 24 (1981)

    [14] I. Rigaudon, Allegro 1:52

    [15] II. Sarabande, Largo, in poco solene 3:49

    [16] III. Courante. Allegretto 2:10

    [17] IV. Menuet, Tempo di minuetto 2:00

    [18] V. Northern song, Andantino 2:11

    [19] VI. Album leaf, Cantabile 1:45

    [20] VII. Little march, Tempo di marcia 2:01

    From Episodes, Op. 36 (1985)

    [21] Prelude, Andantino  2:32

    [22] Nostalgia, Lento 2:57

    [23] Rachenitsa, Molto vivace 2:42

    From Aquarelles, Op. 37 (1968)

    [24] Pastoral, Andante cantabile 4:49

    [25] Rhythmic movement, Allegretto vigoroso (molto ritmico) 2:08

    Four Frescoes, Op. 69  (Live recording, 1984)

    [26] I. In place of an introduction, Allegretto grazioso 1:08

    [27] II. Cockette dance, Vivace 1:00

    [28] III. Archaic song, Andantino 2:20

    [29] IV. Dance humoresque, Allegro vivace 1:19

    Three Bagatelles, Op. 70 (Live recording, 1984)

    [30] I. Sorrow, Allegro moderato 1:28

    [31] II. Little ballad, Andantino 2:05

    [32] III. Humoresque, Allegretto molto 1:40

    [33] Excerpt from an interview with Krassimir Gatev, Golden Fund (2000) 2:13


  • Participating

    Krassimir Gatev, piano