Master class of Vicky Almazidou

Antoni Donchev


pianist, composer, arranger, conductor  

The name of Antoni Donchev has been connected with all the major prestigious Bulgarian jazz awards over  the last 20 years. His star appeared on the musical horizon when he co-founded the prominent “Acoustic Version” jazz formation, whose very first performance on an European music stage was awarded the Grand  Prix at the Jazz Contest in Belgium in 1985. A year later “Acoustic Version” was given another award – this  time even more prestigious – the jury headed by world known critics Joachim-Ernst Berendt and Pavel Brodovski gave the Grand Prix of the International Jazz Federation to Antoni Donchev and Christo Yotsov, giving them the “Europe's Young Jazz Artist of 1986” title. An exceptionally fruitful period followed, during which Antoni Donchev and “Acoustic Version” achieved great success at a number of world famous jazz  festivals: Ost – West in Nuremberg, Jazz Yatra in Bombay and Delhi, Jazz Jamboree in Warsaw, Prague Jazz Festival, Jazz Fair in Zagreb, Moscow, Hanover, Roermond, Tbilisi, Thessaloniki, Istanbul a. o.


Alongside with activities with “Acoustic Version”, Antoni Donchev realizes a number of other projects with musicians from Europe and U.S.A. (Kenny Wheeler, George Garzone, Joe Lovano, Tom Harrell, Kurt Elling, Jerry Bergonzi, Tomasz Stanko, Conrad Herwig, Tommy Smith, Glen Moore, Vladimir Tarasov, Petras Vysniauskas, Reiner Winterschladen, Stephane Belmondo, Eric Vloeimans, Lars Danielson, Ivo Papazov, Zoltan Lantos, Christof Lauer, Georg Breinschmid, Benjamin Schmid, NDR Big Band a. o.); performs as a visiting piano player home and abroad; promotes piano concerts, dedicated to him, performed and recorded together with Bulgarian National Radio Symphony Orchestra; composes music for cinema and theater. He has production of Cd's for BMG, Sony Music, Polysound, Kukermusic, Elenmusic, Balkantone etc.


Over the  last few years his cooperation with stage director Teddy Moscov has been very fruitful. Moskov's staging of “Swan Songs” in Schauspielhaus of Dusseldorf, “Macbu” at Bremer Theater, “Home No13”, “Blue in blue” and “Cyrano” in Thalia Theater in Hamburg were most highly appraised by the German critics. He is the leader of the Bulgarian National Radio Big Band and professor at the South – West University. Antoni Donchev is a model contemporary musician, easily and skillfully handling the broad variety of forms in  performing and composing. He has no difficulty whatever combining the versatility of jazz stylistics with folklore and classical music in al ltheir aspects.