Georgi Minchev

composer, public figure

29.01.1939Sofia - Bulgaria

Academician Georgi Minchev was born on January 29, 1939 in Sofia in the family of Lyuben Minchev (1904-1959) – a famous opera singer and teacher, first tenor in the Sofia National Opera, one of the creators of the great and rich traditions of “bel canto” singing in Bulgaria.
In 1946, he began to study the piano.
In 1952, Georgi Minchev entered the Language High School in Lovech – majoring in French, but in the last year he graduated from 22 ESU in Sofia.
In 1958, he entered the State Conservatory majoring in “composition” in the class of Prof. Marin Goleminov. In 1963 he graduated from the Conservatory.
He carried his regular military service in the Central Military Academy and headed the Repertory-Methodological Office of the Army (1964-65).
He specialized in composition at the Moscow Conservatory under Rodion Shchedrin and at the same time under Aram Khachaturian (1968-1970).
In 1972, he won the big UNESCO scholarship in music and specialized in the USA, France and England. In Paris, he studied for several months at “Le Conservatoire de Paris” with the great French composer Olivier Messiaen.
Later (1976) he specialized in IRKAM, Electroacoustic Center for Music at Beaubourg, Paris under the famous contemporary composer Luciano Berio.
He started working at the Bulgarian National Radio (1959), where for 40 years he held various positions: Editor, Editor-in-Chief, Deputy Editor-in-Chief, Editor-in-Chief, Music Director and Chief Artistic Director of the Music Production and Compositions of the BNR.
In parallel, he was for many years the Secretary and Deputy Chairman of the Union of Bulgarian Composers and later its General Secretary.
In the period from 1988 to 1995 – seven years without interruption, once a month, G. Minchev hosted a one-hour show “The Musical Life of Bulgaria” on the French National Radio “France Musique”. These 74 broadcasts were broadcast “live” from a studio in BNR, in French with host Michel Godard – a famous French journalist and art critic – and in them Minchev presented all the important musical events in Bulgaria, concert appearances, music festivals, new recordings from the concert studio, he made creative portraits of musicians, composers, performers, all this accompanied by a lot of Bulgarian music in all genres from the music library of our National Radio.
In 1998, he left the BNR and lived until 2008 in Heidelberg.
He was a member of international juries in many prestigious international composition competitions:
London – “Let the Nations Sing” (1974,75,76,77,78,1979); Terni (Italy) – 1979.80); Florence – “Premio Vittorio Gui” (1981); Ancona (Italy) – “Premio Ancona” (1982, 83, 84); Warsaw (1984); Berlin – International Composition Competition (1968); Athens – “Olimpia” – International Composition Competition (1990, 92); International competition “S. Prokofiev” (2004, 2008, 2012) in St. Petersburg.

He participated several times in the International Tribune of Contemporary Music in Paris. He represented the Secretary General of the UNESCO Music Council at the two Tribunes of Asian Music in Istanbul (Turkey) and Manila (Philippines).

In Bulgaria – he is the chairman of the Composition Competition for Chamber Orchestra “Sofia Soloists” (2010, 11, 12, 13, 2014); International composition competition of the State Music University in Sofia (2012, 2013); Song contest dedicated to Boris Hristov (2012, 2013).
For several years, he has consistently participated in the meetings of the Group of Music Experts at the EBU (European Broadcasting Union) in Geneva.
As a performing author, his name appeared on the posters of many international festivals: “Sofia Music Weeks”, “Varna Summer”, “March Music Days”, “Prague Spring”, “Warsaw Autumn”, “Musica viva” (Munich), ” Edinburgh Music Festival, “International Festival of Contemporary Music” in Moscow, “Festival of Arts” in Bratislava, “Festival of Contemporary Music Art” in Sydney, “Moscow Autumn”, “White Nights” in St. Petersburg, “Days of Music” ” in Lille (France), “New Music” in Turku (Finland).
Georgi Minchev has been awarded the highest national and numerous international awards. He is the recipient of the titles “Honored Artist”, “Laureate of the Dimitrov Prize”, numerous orders and medals; he is the recipient of the Sofia Award from the Sofia City Municipality, he has received many awards from the Union of Bulgarian Composers for works performed at the “New Bulgarian Music” reviews. His songs have won prizes at competitions, etc.
Recordings of his works have been made in the studios of: Bulgarian National Radio, Moscow Radio, Melody Recording Company, Dutch Radio NOS in Hilversum, French Radio, Sydney Radio (Australia), Concert Studio in Washington, Bavarian Radio in Munich, RAI (Italy), Radio in Bratislava, Berlin, Budapest, Romanian Radio in Bucharest, Radio in St. Petersburg, Madrid, Havana, Bogotá, Stockholm, Flemish Radio in Brussels.
He is the winner of the Grand Prize “Orphan Wanderer” of the Bulgarian National Radio for overall contribution (2008).
Winner of the highest award of the Ministry of Culture “Golden Age” (2014).
In 1979, his Concerto for Piano and Orchestra was selected as a work by the International Association of Music Experts in the USA, was nominated for the Koussevitzky Prize and was ranked first among the recommended works at the Composer’s International Tribune in Paris (1981).
In 1989, Minchev was awarded the “Lorenzo the Magnificent” European Award of the International Medici Academy in Florence and was awarded the title of “Honorary Member” and “Honorary Senator of the Academy”. Francois Mitterrand, Pieter Ustinov and Henry Rosenthal were honored at this session.
His works have been performed in Bulgaria, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Russia, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Cuba, Colombia, Australia, Greece, Belgium, Austria, San Marino, USA, Holland, Spain, Japan, Great Britain, Finland.
Minchev is fluent in French, Russian and English.
In 2015, he was accepted as a member of the BAS with the scientific title of academician.


Stage music:
Fahrenheit 451 after Ray Bradbury (1993), premiered at the Sofia Opera, 1997.

Choral-orchestral works:
Old Bulgarian Chronicles for soloists, lector, mixed choir, female voices choir and symphony orchestra (1971).

Choir works:
“Prayers” – for mixed choir “a capella”: “Kyrie Eleison” and “Our Father”;
“Six Ballads for Female Choir”

For voice and symphony orchestra:
Three Poems for mezzo-soprano and symphony orchestra (1973).

Works for symphony orchestra:
Concert Music (1976);
Symphonic Prologue (1981);
Dynamic Spaces (1991);
Fahrenheit 451, symphonic poem after the ballet (1999);
Contrasts. Music for Orchestra (2002).
“Autumn music” for Orchestra (2009 г.);
“Viva le Trombe” for Symphony Orchestra (2012);
“Reflections” Concert piece for Orchestra (2017);

“Intermezzo” and “Watercolor” – for two flutes, string orchestra and percussion.


piano (1978);
violoncello “SentiMetal” (in memory of Witold Liutoslawski) (1993);

“Monodia & Concerto grosso” – for viola, harpsichord, string orchestra and percussion.
Chamber Music:
Concerto Breve I for ten wind instruments (1984);
Concerto Breve II “Contempo Retro” for wind quintet (1993).

Intermezzo and Watercolour for two flutes, harpsichord and strings (1970);

Monody for violoncello (1999).

For piano:

Sonogrammes, five concert reminiscences (1980).

Vocal music:

Frescoes, song cycle for soprano, piano and bells (1983);
Three Poems for soprano, strings and percussion (1983);
„Drop, drop, slow Tears“ – for Soprano and Piano.

Film music to:

Comparsita, directed by N. Petkov (1978);
Love Game, directed by Y. Vazov (1980);
Avalanche, directed by H. Piskov (1982) (Delhi Special Award);
Forefathers and Descendants, directed by K. Djidrov, R. Georgiev (5-series film, 1983);
“Live Dangerously” 1990. Dir. Natalia Piskova.

Georgi Minchev is the author of many others:

Symphonic works, Chamber music, Choral music (For mixed and uniform choirs), Songs (more than 100 solo, choral, children’s, army, etc. songs), Folk arrangements (more than 350 arrangements, harmonizations, orchestrations), etc.