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NATIONAL SCHOOL OF ARTS ‘PANAYOT PIPKOV’, PLEVEN

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The National School of Arts ‘Panayot Pipkov’, Pleven purposefully and steadily contributes to the realization of the National cultural policy and the development of young talents. The teachers’ professionalism and constructive ambitions are important factors for the training of qualified specialists, who realize themselves in the musical institutions in Bulgaria and abroad.
The traditional contacts of the school with similar cultural institutions in Europe, the participations in festivals and the concert performances of its ensembles in Poland, Russia, Hungary, Italy, Germany, France, Turkey and Greece build its prestige and make invisible spiritual bridges between the European cultures.
In 1985 the school was awarded the  ‘ Kiril I Metodii’ Order – 1st class, in 2000 – ‘The Golden Lyre’ by SMTDB, in 2005 – a diploma by the Ministry of Culture and a honorary diploma by the Municipality of Pleven.

The history of the secondary musical school in Pleven starts with the printed order for its opening – N 1-1433 from 15.04.1960 and on 15.09 it is opened for its first students. A year later it takes the name of one of the apostles of the Bulgarian musical culture – Panayot Pipkov. Classical instruments, accordion and opera singing are taught at the school and since 1966 – the Bulgarian folk instruments kaval, pipe, rebeck and mandolin. Since 1987 folk singing has been taught, and since 2002 – folk dances. With printed order RD 14-152 from 20.09.2004 by the minister of education and science, the Secondary musical school ‘P.Pipkov’ gains the status of National School of Arts. A year later a new speciality is introduced – fine arts (painting, sculpture, graphics).
Ivan Svilarov is the first director of the school. Since 1961, for 34 years the position is held by Bojko Shoykov , and since 1995 – Jechka Dimitrova.
There is a great number of former pupils who have permanently settled and make careers in Bulgarian and European orchestras or as concert performers. Some of them are prof.Plamen Djurov – a composer and a conductor at the NMA ‘P. Vladigerov’, ass. prof. Mariyana Buleva – a teacher at the Veliko Tarnovo University ‘Sv. Sv. Kiril I Metodii’, Ivanka Ninova – soprano, Iveta Simeonova – flute, Dancho Radevski – clarinet, Nikolay Grodanski – trumpet, Vladimir Popov – cello, Margarita Kalcheva –contrabass, Galunka Kaloferova  and Donka Raycheva -  authors of music textbooks. Others have already won recognition as musicians in European orchestras or as concert performers around the world: Denitsa Kazakova and Raya Raycheva – violin players, Nataliya Neykova ( the three of them in Switzerland) – flute, Valentin Tushev (Mexico) –bassoon, Christiyan Chernev (SAR) – cello, Daniela Ganeva (Great Britain) – percussion instruments, Pavlin Neshev (Germany) – piano, Yana Deshkova (Denmark) – violin, Svetoslav Stoyanov (the USA) – percussions etc. A lot of former students start dealing with pop music and show business: Slavi Trifonov, Evgeni Dimitrov –The Maestro, Georgi Krasimirov, Nina Nikolina, Georgi Milchev – Godji etc.
Talented folk singers,( Gergana Dimitrova and Ana Borisov) and musicians (Georgi Petrov and Darinka Tsekova – rebeck, Vladimir Velichkov –kaval, Svetlin Nitsov – pipe) perform successfully in our country and abroad. A folklore ensemble, including a choir, an orchestra and a dancing group, was established in 2002. It impresses the audiences in Bulgaria, Italy, Spain, Greece and Turkey with its performances.
A chamber orchestra, successively conducted by Aleko Anonov and Bojko Shoykov, was created in 1972. Now the orchestra is called “Brevis” and is conducted by Plamen Markov .Over the last decade it has won prizes at competitions in Belgium and Hungary and at the competition “Hopes, talents,masters”, Bulgaria. It has taken part in “New Bulgarian music” and “Varna summer” and it has realized successful concert tours in Germany and France.
Since its creation in 1994 the percussion ensemble “Accent”, directed by Simeon Serafimov, has won a great number of prizes at national and international competitons, such as “Young musical talents”, “Hopes, talents ,masters”, “Pendim”, “The Music and the Earth”. It has had a lot of concerts all over the country, some of them organized by the Parliament of the Republic of Bulgaria, The Permanent Embassy of UNO, the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Education and Science. It has participated in many musical forums – “Spring artfests”, Laureate days “Katya Popova” ,The Third annual week of American music in Bulgaria, the European Youth Music Festival in Pasau and the World Youth Days in Germany, the Balkan Youth Music Festival in Greece, concerts in Paris and the Bulgarian cultural centre in Vienna.