Alexandar Tanev

composer, conductor, pedagogue, public figure

23.10.1928 – 15.04.1996Budapest – Hungary

Alexander Tanev studied Law at Sofia University and graduated in 1950. The same year he enrolled at the State Academy of Music and graduated in 1957 majoring in Composition under Professor Vesselin Stoyanov and Conducting under Professor Georgi Dimitrov. He edited the music publications of the Amateur Art Activity Institute (1959-74). Concurrently he conducted the Academic Choir (1962-69). In 1970 he joined the staff of the Music Theory Faculty of the State Academy of Music teaching Composition and later became associate professor (1974) and full professor (1986). He was Dean of the Faculty (1985-93). He worked actively for the promotion of the Bulgarian choral work. He was Secretary of the Amateur Art Activity Council at the Art and Culture Committee (the today’s Ministry of Culture), member of artistic councils at the Bulgarian National Radio, the Bulgarian National Television, etc. He was also member of the organisation committees of the Professor Georgi Dimitrov International Choral Festival in Varna, the Golden Diana Festival in Yambol; he chaired of the Gusla Choir. From 1992 to the end of his life he also chaired the Bulgarian Choral Union. Member of the managing board of the Union of Bulgarian Composers, he was among the initiators and organisers of the annual review New Bulgarian Music carried out by the Union of Bulgarian Composers.

He composed stage music; three oratorios and five cantatas; two concertos for piano and symphony orchestra, concerto for winds and percussion and other orchestral works; chamber opuses; over 60 choral songs; theatre music, etc. A substantial part of his choral songs were included in the permanent repertoire of a number of Bulgarian ensembles and were performed at authoritative international and national competitions and festivals. He won several artistic and national awards.


Stage music:
Festival in Tzarevetz – ballet (1974);

Gramada (Heap) – music drama (1978).

Choral-orchestral works:
Chronicle of Freedom (1976);
The Legacy (1981);
Motherland (1985).

Old Bulgarian Airs (1974);
Eulogy of the Song of Damyancho (1980);
Eulogy of the Rila Monastery (1982);
Song of Songs (1984);
Night and Morning (1989).

Works for symphony orchestra:
Sinfonietta (1959);
Builders’ Music (1974);
Concerto for wind instruments and percussion (1978);
Capriccio (also version for big wind orchestra) (1985);
Rondo scherzando for trombone and symphony orchestra (1972).

Piano Concertos: Concerto N1 Divertimento concertante (1976); Concerto N2 (1991).

Works for string orchestra:
Bagatelles (1971);

Youth Concerto for violin and string orchestra (1969).

Chamber Music:
Brass Quintet (1994);
Sonatina for quintet of wood winds (1996);
Game for violoncello and piano (1976);
Sonata for viola and piano.

For piano:
Sonatina (1954);
Sonata (1964);
Legends of Bulgaria – cycle (1973);
Ritual and Dance-Toccata (1980).

Vocal music:
Donkey’s Adventures (1975).

Choir works:
For mixed choir:
My Native Land (1960);
Cloud in a Desert; Spring; Theme with Variations N1 (1967);
Summer Rain over Tarnovo; Vardar and Rila (1968);
Ne moy peya, ptichko ranobudna (Dont Sing, Early-rising Bird); Theme with Variations N2 (1969);
Sun Is Hurrying (1970);
Moma momche izlagala (A Maiden Has Lied to a Guy), Ya zalubih kaso libe (1973);
I Love You, Bulgaria; Late Summer; Yove malai ,mome; Moya da bade devoyka (Let The Maiden Be Mine) (1974);
Noshten vihar (Night Storm Wind) (1975);
Yunak varvi (Vigorous Youngster Is Passing By) (1977);
Galab guka (A Pigeon Coos) (1978);
Songs from the Turla Region (1979);
Tzarstvoto na bukite (The Kingdom of the Beech-trees); Karaguna (1981);
Quo Vadis; Song for the Salt (1982);
Sofia Ancient and Young (1984);
Sonatina for Choir (1985);
Otche nash (Lord’s Prayer); Traditional Dance for Choir (1991);
Tebe poem (We Sing to You, God) (1996).

For male voices choir:
Tarnovgrad (1967);
Hey, Spring Is Coming (1968);
Dorde me momi iskaya (Until Girls Wanted Me) (1972);
Old Bulgarian Airs – vocalize in three parts (1974);
My Son (1979);
Divertimento (1980);
Ancient Song (1983);
Mi Alma (1991).

For female voices choir:
Birds (1966);
Moya da bade devoyka (Let The Maiden Be Mine) (1974);
Yove, malay mome (Yove) (1974);
Noshten vihar (Night Storm Wind) (1975);
Turchin robini karashe (A Turk Took Slaves) (1976);
Bouquet of Love (1985);
Otche nash (Lord’s Prayer) (1986);
Tebe poem (We Sing to You, God) (1996).

For children’s choir:
Bulgarian Heart; Spring (1973);
Spring Tale (1977);
Oh, What An Own Goal;
Zayu I velikana (The Rabbit and the Giant) (1979);
Lodka ot vestnik (Boat Made up of a Newspaper) (1983);
Pizzicatos (1987);
Solfeggio Sonatina (1984);
Muzikata sviri (Music Is Heard) (1993).