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Bulgarian Soul

Vesselina Kasarova , Krassimir Kyurkchiisky , Bulgarian Traditional , Tzanko Dimitrov Delibozov , Sofia Soloists Chamber Ensemble , Ermila Schweizer-Sekulinova , Cosmic Voices from Bulgaria Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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MP3 Music, 14 Songs, 2004 $9.99  
Audio CD, 2004 --  

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Dilmano, Dilbero (Dilmana, Dilbera) 1:55$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Kalimanku, Denku (Kalimanka, Denka) 4:56$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Day mi, Bozhe, krila lebedovi (Give Me, Oh God, The Wings Of A Swan) 4:13$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Zablyalo mi e agantse (A Little Lamb Was Bleating) 4:02$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Polegnala e Tudora (Fair Tudora Is Dozing) 7:10$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Rofinka bolna lezhi (Rufinka Lies Ill) 6:24$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Melodiya (Melody) 4:19$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Slantse ogreyalo (The Sun Is Shining) 4:11$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Se ma yad, mamo (I'm So Angry, Mother) 4:01$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Malkata tsvetarka (The Flowergirl) 4:55$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. Vokaliza (Vocalize) 3:40$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. Mama Rada dumashe (Mama Was Telling Rada) 5:28$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. Proshetna se Momchilitsa (Momchil's Young Wife) 3:51$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. Ya kazhi mi, oblache le byalo (Tell Me, Little White Cloud) 5:43$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Product Details

  • Performer: Ermila Schweizer-Sekulinova, Cosmic Voices from Bulgaria
  • Orchestra: Sofia Soloists Chamber Ensemble
  • Conductor: Tzanko Dimitrov Delibozov
  • Composer: Krassimir Kyurkchiisky, Bulgarian Traditional
  • Audio CD (January 13, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: RCA
  • ASIN: B00012QLW8
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #453,734 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews


"Oh dear--an hour of Bulgarian folk songs," you may be saying to yourself faced with this program, but you can be sure that the diversity of the arrangements, and Kasarova's total involvement and beautiful, colorful mezzo-soprano, make it not only worthwhile but enchanting. Some of the songs are backed up by a chamber orchestra, some by piano, some are a cappella, some feature a chorus. This latter, a group of women's voices singing in typical Bulgarian fashion, takes some getting used to--it's not operatic singing at all, tending to be spicy and a bit harsh, but it's fascinating. And Kasarova (who also provides the program notes, which amount to a history of Bulgaria) sings with honesty and directness, whether in a touching, sweet song about missing one's homeland ("Give Me, Oh God, the Wings of a Swan"), or a strange song, nominally about planting pepper seedlings, but really an excuse to dance merrily, full of dissonances from the chorus ("Dilmano, Dilbero"), a lament by a girl too young to be pregnant ("Se ma yad, mamo"), and many more. The composer and folklorist Krassimir Kyurchiyski has arranged the songs (and written one of them, based on a folk melody). It's impossible to get bored listening to this; the combination of Kasarova's many vocal faces and the moods the songs take us through--and, of course, that odd, mesmerizing choral sound--keeps the attention level high. Try this, you'll like it--and Kasarova, as noted, brings the same musicality and richness to these songs as she does to her performances of music by Mozart, Massenet, and Rossini. --Robert Levine

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
Of her recording of Bulgarian folk songs acclaimed mezzo-soprano Vesselina Kasarova has said, "I've never made such a recording before. After recording each song, I was shaken by emotion. These are songs every Bulgarian knows - and not just the people. The walls know the music. Bulgarian songs are sad, full of melancholy, and I understand this. I love people and having them around, but I like being on my own. This feeling characterizes our music."
Surely most listeners will also be emotionally touched by these timeless, unforgettable melodies that Kasarova has sung since childhood. She brings not only understanding but heart and soul to this recording.
A collaboration with composer Krassimir Kyurkchiyski, the Cosmic Voices from Bulgaria and the "Sofia Soloists" Chamber Orchestra is nothing short of brilliant.
This is a disc to be heard again and again as with each listening the elements of history, mythology and fantasy begin to emerge as the rhythms portray shared elements of human life.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A lovely interpretation of bulgarian folk music May 10, 2004
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
I've been waiting to listen to this CD ever since I first heard of Ms Kasarova's plans to make a record only of Bulgarian folk songs and after I finally was able to do so I'm really happy that she has managed to introduce the listeners to this lovely music in such a touching way! All the pieces are specially arranged for the project in order to match the folk songs appropriately with an operatic voice and the efforts are more than successful - the result is an enchanting blend of two different worlds. I also enjoyed the choir that sings in the typical for the Bulgarian folk tradition very "open" way. It helps greatly in conveying the atmosphere of that marvellows music. And, of course, Vesselina's singing is as always passionate, mesmerising and even heart-breaking at times. She even manages to imitate in a very delicate way the traditional way of folk singing that has more vibrato in it, so it isn't a fault here, as one of the reviewers mentions, but only an intentional effect. So, if you are looking for something different, made with great love and professionalism - that' s a record you shouldn't miss.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Try It. You May Be Surprised At How Much You Love It! February 19, 2004
Format:Audio CD
Vesselina Kasarova's BULGARIAN SOUL is a difficult recording to characterize. Theoretically it is an album of Bulgarian folk tunes, most of which are arranged for Ms. Kasarova's beautiful mezzo soprano voice, but the recording is far more than what listeners would expect it to be. The various pieces vary from lively melodies to soulful reflections. The arrangements are contemporary and showcase Ms. Kasarova's vocal talents as well as her appreciation for the music she is performing. In each excerpt Ms. Kasarova's beautiful voice adds majesty to what in many cases are centuries old works. She is accompanied on many of the pieces by a women's chorus which gives an added flair to the recording. The music is at times haunting, at other times charming, but in all cases beautiful. An excellent booklet accompanies the disc which gives a background to the music.
I would encourage people to listen to the recording more than once before judging it. I have found that it is more of an acquired taste than an instant hit. Personally I wondered exactly what I was listening to the first time I heard it, but it has been in my rotation of CD's since that time and each time I hear it, I seem to grow fonder of it. I'm sure you will too!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes me want to visit Bulgaria! August 18, 2006
By Smorgy
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This nostalgic CD makes me want to visit Bulgaria.... just to see what kind of a country is it that produced such haunting folk songs... and such soulful singer as Vesselina Kasarova and her many great Bulgarian colleagues.

The first piece, Dilmano Dilbero grabs your attention quickly with its strange dissonance and harmony...or dis-harmony between the soloist and the chorus. They sing together in different keys! And somehow it all works. All the songs are pretty sad but not depressing, climaxing at the last, haunting piece, Tell Me, Little White Cloud.

Kasarova's distinctive full mahogany voice cuts right thru the chorus and the contrast is intoxicating. It's strange to my ear... like she and the Cosmic Voice chorus are singing their own different tunes about the same thing. And it somehow works! After listening to this CD I now have a good idea why the Bulgarian singers tend to be expressive and in command of many vocal colors. It's practically ingrained in their traditional music. Most pieces here are accompanied by piano or light orchestration.

The booklet provides libretti in Bulgarian and English, with Ms Kasarova's note on the history and development of Bulgarian folk music, and her short synopsis on each of the song which really helps me appreciate them better.
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4 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars italianized, lacks character March 16, 2004
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
singer has untransparent voice, sounds muffled and obscure, uses the vibrato far too often.
compositions jettison modal character of traditional bulgarian music, making melody sound disconnected from tonal center of gravity.
in short, little or no "bulgarian" flavor-except when the heavenly choir makes an appearance.
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