The ХХVI International Ballet Competition – Varna 2014 was officially closed last night at the Summer Theatre of the sea capital of Bulgaria in the presence of the patron of the forum – Mrs. Margarita Popova, Vice President of the Republic of Bulgaria, Mayor of Varna Ivan Portnih, diplomats, official guests, representatives of the ballet community from different parts of the world.
Mrs. Irina Bokova, Director General of the UNESCO, the world organization under the patronage of which was held the Ballet Olympiad, sent a congratulatory address to the competition. Professor Valeria Uralska, Chief Editor of the “Ballet” magazine, and Head of the Association of Merited Figures in Arts of Russia, bestowed the special prize of the “Ballet” magazine to the “International Ballet Competition – Varna” Foundation via its Chairman Dimitar Dimitrov. The Chairman of the Jury, Professor Vladimir Vasiliev, wished successful ballet careers to the winners, and to all participants in the competition. Varna Mayor Ivan Portnih indicated the contribution of the competition for the candidacy of Varna for European Capital of Culture in 2019, and told the young artists Varna was expecting them to come back in 2016. The prizes were presented by Professor Vladimir Vasiliev. On behalf of the organizing Foundation, the Jury members, and the official guests at the Competition received honorary medals in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Ballet Olympiad, and in the memory of its inspirer, Maestro Emil Dimitrov.
Mrs. Margarita Popova, Vice President of the Republic of Bulgaria and patron of the Competition, thanked all who support the Varna competition, the members of the Jury – titans who have written part of the history of ballet art, the family of Emil Dimitrov that carry on the implementation of the mission, the city of Varna and its Mayor, the demanding and generous audience of the competition. She officially announced the closure of the ХХVI edition of the International Ballet Competition – Varna, and the fire of the competition was put out.
In the Gala Concert that followed after the official ceremony, for the enraptured audience that filled the Summer Theatre, performed the holders of the prizes of the competition, and they were strongly applauded for their performance. Last to dance was Soo Bin Lee from Korea, holder of the “Varna 2014” Special Distinction, and of the “Emil Dimitrov” Special Prize for Young Talents.
To the great surprise of the audience, a performance on stage turned into a real historical event for the competition. In the year of the 50th Jubilee of the forum, on the scene at the Summer Theatre there danced a legend – the Prima Ballerina Absoluta of Japan – Yoko Morishita, who performed “The Song of Birds”. This historic dance had came into existence on this very stage exactly 40 years ago, after the competition in 1974, when Yoko Morishita won her gold medal in Varna. The event was watched with enormous interest by representatives of Japanese media who arrived in Varna especially for the event.
The finale of the Gala Concert was highly emotional as all laureates appeared on stage in a dance of a vortex choreographed by Eldar Aliev from the USA. The grateful audience applauded on foot their last performances, and fireworks put a sparkling end to the feast.
Yet another starry night is in store for the admirers of ballet today, when on the scene of the Summer Theatre will begin the Super Gala Concert “Where Generations Meet” dedicated to Maestro Emil Dimitrov. In it, along with the laureates of this year, will also appear holders of prizes from previous editions of the competition: Whitney Jensen from the USA, Maximiliano Guerra from Argentina, Rolando Sarabia from Cuba, Alexander Alexandrov and Nataly Bratanova from Bulgaria, Mathias Dingman from the USA, Brooklyn Mack from the USA, Denis Cherevichko from Austria, Min Jung Kim, Sung Yue Han and Meyung Kyu Kim from Korea.