Victoria Vassilenko is the first winner of the ‘13 Centuries of Bulgaria’ National Prize in support of young talent in contemporary arts and science

On 24 September 2020, the second and final jury meeting was held for the selection of the first winner of the ‘13 Centuries of Bulgaria’ National Prize in support of young talent in contemporary arts and science, established by NEF ‘13 Centuries of Bulgaria’ at the end of last year.

The composition of the jury was determined by the Fund’s Management Council after a preliminary consultation with national institutions and organisations in the fields of culture and science. Its members are: Assoc. Prof. Dr Penko Gospodinov (NATFA ‘Krastyo Sarafov’), Prof. Sava Dimitrov, DMA (NAM ‘Prof. Pancho Vladigerov’), Prof. Dr Nikolay Yordanov (Varna Summer International Theatre Festival), Prof. Dr Fantina Rangelova, MEng (UACEG), and Prof. Valeri Stefanov (St Kliment Ohridski Sofia University). On the instructions of the Minister of Culture and Chairman of the Jury on the Statute of the Prize, the meetings were chaired by Assoc. Prof. Dr Ventsislav Velev, Advisor to the Minister. At its first meeting, held on 23 January 2020, the jury selected the six nominated participants in the competition: Victoria Vassilenko (performing artist, pianist), Dr Ivalina Trendafilova (nanosciences and nanotechnologies), Rosen Georgiev (research in the field of atomic layer deposition and its applications), Denitsa Todorova (hot processing of artistic glass), Lilia Pangelova (glass design), Viviane Vassileva (musician, percussionist).

After the successful completion of the jury’s work, NEF ‘13 Centuries of Bulgaria’ announces the name of the first winner of the ‘13 Centuries of Bulgaria’ National Prize in support of young talent in contemporary arts and science: Victoria Vassilenko.

She studied piano at the Lyubomir Pipkov National School of Music in Sofia, under Antonina Boneva, and later under Prof. Stella Dimitrova-Maystorova. She acquired her Bachelor’s degree from the Faculty of Music at NBU. She graduated from the Reina Sofía School of Music, Madrid, and the Lake Como International Piano Academy, Italy. She has a Master’s degree from the Royal Conservatoire of Brussels. She has won numerous awards and distinctions, including the Crystal Lyre Prize for best young performer, the Grand Prix laureate of the Dimitar Berbatov Foundation, first prize at the George Enescu International Competition in Bucharest, Romania. Victoria was a prize winner at Les Jeudis du Piano Competition Festival, Geneva, Switzerland. She was awarded the Golden Age Prize of the Ministry of Culture, Bulgaria. In that period (September 2019–September 2020), she specialised in Louis Lortie’s piano class, Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel, Belgium.

On 1 October 2020 in the Palace Ballroom of the National Gallery, diplomas will be awarded to the winner and the nominees.