Donation to the Sofia Philharmonic—documents from Emil Chakarov’s archives

On 15 March 2023, the ‘13 Centuries of Bulgaria’ National Endowment Fund donated an archive of documents belonging to the world-renowned Bulgarian musician, violinist and conductor Emil Chakarov (1948–1991), including scores for ‘Aida’ by Giuseppe Verdi, ‘The Queen of Spades’ by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, and ‘Gloria’ by Francis Poulenc.


The donation also included La Danse en Révolution and Concerto magazines from 1989, editions of the Herald Tribune newspaper (also from 1989), along with Emil Chakarov’s personal records, programmes, and notes.


Ms Bisera Yosifova, the Fund’s Executive Director, presented the donation to Mr Nikolay Wiazigin, Acting Director of the Sofia Philharmonic, who thanked the Fund’s representatives, assuring them that it would be of benefit to the Philharmonic.



Emil Chakarov was born in Burgas. He graduated from the Secondary School of Music as a violinist in Petar Arnaudov’s class. Between 1967 and 1971, he studied at the Sofia Conservatoire.


The laureateship awarded to Emil Chakarov at the 1971 Karajan Conducting Competition in West Berlin was the occasion for Herbert von Karajan himself, as one of the most prominent Austrian conductors in the second half of the 20th century, to state: ‘I consider this young musician a particularly gifted conductor.’ This was the beginning of the musician’s dynamic and successful international career. He was the first Bulgarian conductor to work with world-famous orchestras in Europe, America and Asia.


Emil Chakarov’s repertoire included operatic and symphonic compositions and oratorios, from a variety of musical epochs. He led successful concerts and operatic productions in Leningrad [now, St Petersburg], Moscow, Prague, Mexico, Los Angeles, New York, Pittsburgh, Montreal, Washington, Tokyo, Rome, London, Munich, Osaka, Milan, Cologne, Paris, Naples, Stockholm, Geneva, Frankfurt, Copenhagen, and Luxembourg.

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