Academic Mixed Chamber Choir “Gaudeamus” – Plovdiv, Bulgaria

Academic mixed chamber choir Gaudeamus – Plovdiv

Academic mixed chamber choir “Gaudeamus” was created in 2006. It has had an intensive concert activity, performing orthodox music, cantatas and oratorios. It has also taken part in numerous Bulgarian and foreign choir festivals: Thracian choral festival – Yambol, “Viva la musica” – Sofia, Panorama of the Bulgarian choral art – Chamber hall of “Bulgaria”, Sofia; International choir festival “It’s truly meet” – Pomorie, Festival of the sacred choral music “St. Petka of Bulgaria” – Gabrovo, 7th international festival of the student choirs, Blagoevgrad, Annual choir festival for sacred music “Hosanna in excelsis”, St. Paraskeva, Sofia. “Gaudeamus” has also participated as a resident choir in the First International competition for young choir conductors “Maestro Zahari Mednikarov” – Albena, as well as in the Second International Choir Festival in Paralia, Greece /September 2013/.

The choir has participated in workshops of choral music under the direction of John Flummerfeld (USA), and Michael Scheck (Belgium), as well as an annual musical-scenic project of the European Union, which takes place in France and the United Kingdom. In connection with the latter, “Gaudeamus” has performed diverse pieces, including “Stabat Mater” by Pergolesi, “The fairy queen” by Purcell, motets by Bach, “Requiem” by Arnaud Dumond, Handel’s opera “Semele” and madrigals by Monteverdi. The choir has premiered works of contemporary French authors, such as Karol Beffa – “Missa brevis”, “Media vita” and “La messe”, Philippe Hersant – “Calioppe”, “Falling star”, “Desert” (based on texts by John Donne and Friedrich Nietzsche), Philippe Mazé – “Psaume 150”, as well as the opera “K. et la piste du château” – based on the novel “The castle” by Kafka.

“Gaudeamus” often participates in projects of the Academy of dance, music and fine arts – Plovdiv. In collaboration with the student orchestra the choir has performed masses by Mozart, Haydn, “Magnificat” by Cimarosa, in 2010 – the opera “Dido and Aeneas” by Henry Purcell, and in 2012 Handel’s “Semele”.

In 2017 the choir realized first performance in Bulgaria of Cantata 140 Bach and the opera “Richard le Coeur de lion” of A. Gretry.

The ensemble has been invited on numerous occasions as a guest in Cantate Jubilate and Musica sacra – weekly broadcasts on the Bulgarian national radio, as well as editions dedicated to special occasions, such as the National day of university students, Christmas and the anniversary of Cantate Jubilate. In August 2012 choir received Second Prize in the Ohrid International Choir Competition, Macedonia where it performed three concerts. In November 2013 and November 2014 the choir had a concert tour with orthodox music in Belgium  /Antwerp, Oudenarde, and Malle/. In June 2014 the choir won the highest musical prize in Bulgaria – “Musician of the year” category ”Ensemble”.In 2015 the choir take a part in 55-th International festival “Virgo Lauretana” in Loreto, Italy, as well as in International choir festival in Vezsprem, Hungary. In 2016 the choir take a part in orthodox choir festival in Hajnowka, Poland. In 2017 “Gaudeamus” participate in Festival of sacred Advent choir music in Prague, Chech Republic. Very successful was the concert tour ina Paris, France in April 2018, where the choir participated in performances of “Ein Deutches Requiem”Brahms, Bulgarian orthodox and french contemporary choir music. In 2018 the choir made a premiere for Europe of “Music of Love and Stars” of Jeffry Wan with Minneapolis Guitar Quartet. In 2019 the choir is invited to perform a concert with orthodox music for Euroradio.

In May 2020 “Gaudeamus” won 2-place in category “Mixed choirs” in „Alexander the Great” Nish, Serbia, as well as 2 golden medals in category “Mixed choirs” and “Musica sacra” and prize for best performance of contemporary music in “Melodianum”-Kikinda, Serbia.  In October 2020г. Academic choir perform 2 concerts with music of Michael Haydn and Antonio Vivaldi

In 2021 the choir take a part in festival “Prekrasnoe daleko” –Russia, International choir festival “Chernomorski zvutsi”-Balchik, 12 International music festival “Days of music in Old town”-Plovdiv, International orthodox festival “It’s truly meet”-Pomorie and many others. December 2021 the choir wаs a winner of 3 Golden medals in choir competition “Melodianum” in Serbia and also the prize of the jury for best performance.

Prof. Ph. D. Vesela Geleva – founder and conductor of “Gaudeamus” – graduated State Music Academy “Pancho Vladigerov” – Sofia with professor Vasil Arnaudov and professor Virginia Atanasova. Since 1994 she teaches choir conducting and choir singing in the Academy of music, dance and fine arts, Plovdiv, where she currently holds the position of associate professor.

In 2006 she completed her doctoral thesis: “Specifics and cultivation of the singing voice of children and adolescents and the problems it presents in a choir”. She has authored many articles and publications, as well as the monograph “Petar Dinev and his ecclesiastical choral legacy”. Since 2006 she conducts the choir of the church “Saint Trinity” in Plovdiv, which participates in the Fourth and Fifth festival of eastern orthodox music “It’s truly meet”, Pomorie. By commission of the Bulgarian national radio she records with the same ensemble a CD with music by Petar Dinev. Since September 2010 she also conducts the choir of State opera Plovdiv. She was invited as member of the jury of International choir festivals of orthodox music in Pomorie and Nessebar.

In June 2015  Vesela Geleva won the prize for choral conducting in 12-th International choir festival for orthodox music”It’s truly meet” –Pomorie.