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“Bodra pessen” Children’s Choir and Denitsa Uzunova

“Bodra pessen” Children’s Choir of the Municipal children’s complex in Shumen, Bulgaria was founded on 05.12.1963. Its founder and chief artistic manager and conductor for 48 years was Prof. Veneta Vicheva. Since 2011 the art director and conductor of the choir has been Denica Uzunova, a follower of Professor Veneta Vicheva. Zhaneta Katsarova is the piano accompanist, Jordanka Ilieava is a choir-master.

Its many awards and medals from national and international festivals and competitions have been a source of pride for the town of Shumen and our country. “Bodra pesen”choir  won the first prizes at the following international choir competitions:
- 1970. First prize winner in the IV International Choir Competition "Bella Bartok" in Debrecen, Hungary;
- 1976. First prize winner  in the XXIV International Polyphonic Choir Competition "Guido d`Arezo" in Arezzo, Italy;
- 1983. First prize winner in the XVI International Choir Competition "Prof. Georgi Dimitrov "- Varna, Bulgaria;
- 1984. The highest prize "Summa cum laude" in the Extra category at the XXXII International Choir Competition in  Neerpelt, Belgium;
- 2005. "GRAND PRIX OF SHUMEN" for art and culture;
- 2005.  after a competition the Bulgarian national radio broadcast "Allegro vivace" declared “Bodra pesen” choir for “Musician of the year” in the category “Ensemble”.
- 2009. FIRST PRIZE "Cum Laude" in the First International Choir Competition - Antalya, Turkey;
- 2010. Grand Prix Winner XI Moscow International Children's and Youth Choir Festival "Moscow Sonds" .Prof. Veneta Vicheva award winning conductor mastership;
- 2010. "Crystal Lyre 2010"  for excellence in the “Choirarts” category by  The Union of Bulgarian Musicians and Dancers;
- 2013. AWARD FOR BEST PERFORMANCE OF BULGARIAN SONG in VIII  International Choral Festival of Women and Girls Choirs "Prof. Liliya Gyuleva" in Targovishte;
- 2014. Golden Plaque for participation in 18 International choir meeting in Alexandria, Greece;
- 2014. First prize winner in the category "Equal choirs"  and GRAND PRIX Winner  in the IV International Choir Festival "Blacksea sounds" in Balchik, Bulgaria;
- 2015. Winner of the First national awards "Professor. Pancho Vladigerov" for outstanding students in the field of music.
- 2015. Choir "Bodra pessen" conducted by Denitsa Uzunova received the title  “European culture ambassador” - for the second time
- In 2016 the choir "Bodra pessen" had been awarded with the "Award of Shumen for art and culture" – music cathefory;
- In 2016 had been awarded with the Award of the Bulgarian National Radio  "Musician of the Year" for 2015
- In 2016 the choir "Bodra pessen" had been awarded witt  the Special prize of the First National Choir Festiva "120 years Petko Staynov " in Kazanlak, Bulgaria.

“Bodra pessen” choir is a laureate and gold medalist from the IXth and Xth World youth festivals in Sofia /Bulgaria/ and Berlin /Germany/. Its performance was marked with great success in the national and international festivals in: Olomoutz – The Czech Republic; Hamburg – Germany; VIth European choir meetings – Warsaw, Poland; Sofia music weeks, Vivia la Musica – Sofia, Bulgaria; International choir assembly “Bulgarian Riviera” – Varna, Bulgaria and others.
“Bodra pesen” choir is distinguished in representing the Bulgarian children’s choir arts in Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Belgium, Russia, Germany, Romania, Greece, Poland, Turkey, Slovakia. Slovenia and France.

There were four LP records; studio and documentary recordings in Radio Berlin, Radio Leipzig, Budapest, Brussels, Hamburg, and Sofia; at the national Polish television; and also many audio and video recordings, and a CD.

 “Bodra pesen”  choir  won the following national and international medals and awards:
-     “St. St. Cyrill and Methodius” order – 1st rank;
-    “For distinguished service to the Bulgarian national army” order;
-     In 2004 the choir was accepted as a member of the International choir union;
-   In 2004 “Bodra pesen” choir was awarded “European culture ambassador” by the European choir federation at the European Union among 1750 teams.

“Bodra pessen” choir is a follower of  the rich cultural traditions of Shumen. One of the first cultural houses was established there. The first theater and operetta performance took place there. The first symphony orchestra was established in Shumen.The first school mixed choir was established there by Dobri Voinikov in 1858. Shumen is the host of  The International Children and Youth Choral Festival "Dobri Voinikov" initiated by prof. Veneta Vicheva

Denitsa Uzunova is a student of prof. Vicheva. She works at  the Municipal Children's Complex, Shumen as a senior teacher and а conductor of "Bodra pessen" choir.  In 2000 she completed The Second  International Conductors Workshop in Varna with Professor Boris Tevlin (Russia), prof. Helen Gee (France), Dr. Larry Wyatt (USA), prof. Marin Chonev (Bulgaria).

From 2004 - 2009 she completed a PhD, specializing in musicology at Shumen University "Bishop Konstantin Preslavski" under the guidance of Professor Vicheva Veneta. In 2006 she attended a class of prof. Erwin Ortner – a choral-conductor / Austria / with Arnold Schoenberg Choir in Rousse during the March Music Days.

Since 2011 Denitsa Uzunova  has been an artistic director and conductor of the choir.

Denitsa Uzunova organized tours and participated in concerts of "Bodra pessen" choir in international choral festivals in Warsaw, Poland; Nancy, France; Antalya, Turkey; Moscow, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia.

In 2010 Denitsa received the First Prize in the Third National Competition for teachers working in extracurricular activities organized by the festival program "Friends of Bulgaria" and the Ministry of Education.

In 2014 in the international contest for teachers "Extracurricular activities - for sustainable quality education of students ", organized by the Trade Union of Bulgarian Teachers together with the foundation " Sustainable Development of Bulgaria" under the auspices of the Ministry of Education, Denitsa Uzunova most wins highest award - the special prize of the Ministry of education and Science and was awarded by the Deputy Minister Vanya Kastreva.
In 2017 Denitsa Uzunova  won the National Prize “Teacher of the Year” and the Shumen Municipality Award for Contribution to Cultural Development.

She participated in the organization and conduct of The International Children and Youth Choral Festival "Dobri Voinikov" – Shumen.

Denitsa Uzunova is the author of articles on topics related to choral art.

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