State Puppet Theatre Targovishte – History


The beginning of the puppet art in Targovishte

The beginning of the puppet-theatre art in Targovishte is with the premiere of a self-contained composition at the „Napredak-1864“ Municipal Cultural Center. With almost no experience, but with a lot of stubbornness, a few enthusiasts, under the leadership of Vichka Karelezova, prepared the play „The Magic Mud-shoe/Magic Overshoe“, which premiered on February 15, 1961. The group produces performances in Omurtag, Popovo, Preslav, Shumen, Razgrad, Provadia, Gorna Oryahovitsa, Rousse, and other cities in the country. Since the end of 1961, Stoyan Karelezov has taken over for one season. Since 1964 theatre activity has come to life under the leadership of Dimcho Nikolov.

Over the years many guest artists – directors, musicians, and artists have been invited. This direct contact with prominent masters of puppet theatre dramatically improves the quality of the productions and gives the team self-esteem to grow up with professional theatres.

State Puppet Theatre Targovishte becomes professional

On October 1, 1975, a long-awaited dream came true, earned by hard work, talent and perseverance – The Puppet Theater is recognized as a State Puppet Theatre. This is legitimized by Decision №49 /February 13, 1975/ of the Council of Ministers. The first director was Ivo Harizanov. Unforgettable encounters with the magical arts of puppets begin.

Artists and awards became an integral part of the history of State Puppet Theatre Targovishte   

Through the years the stage has witnessed plenty of famous and handful of young puppeteers. Visiting staff and theatre crews from Germany, Poland, Estonia, Russia, Belarus and Romania have performed as well. State Puppet Theatre of Targovishte has established its very prestigious place and name through participation in a number of festivals in Poland, Croatia, Germany, Pakistan, Belgium, Ukraine, Cuba, Spain, Romania, Turkey. The high-quality level of the performances of the Theatre teams has been cordially acknowledged by their faithful audience and by many theatre experts at festivals, various artistic forums, and events that had taken place not only throughout the country but around the World as well.

It is with a very special pride we should mention the visit of the theatre staff  and their performances in Moscow – a visit that took place under the personal invitation by Aleks Kurliandskii – the famous author of Beware you, You Wolf / Nu, Zayac, Pogodi. The performance received the special Letter of Gratitude by Sergei Obraztzov himself.

Repertoire of  State Puppet Theatre Targovishte

For the past 60 years more than 200 plays have been performed for audiences greater than 2 500 000 spectators and not only in Targovishte, but in more than 100 places in and out of the country. The multitude and the diversity of the genres included are enormous. The scale of the applied forms of expression and acting techniques is quite broad. The marionette leading techniques, the unique puppets drive behind the screen, the puppets’ pantomime of improvised dolls in musicals and live performances as well as the puppets themselves vary starting from a simple popular – show type of plays to the extent of purely dramatic performances. The titles of the shows have been interpreted in a modern and up-to-date meaning and sense. Stage–directing together with set design solutions and approaches are diverse and had left a very strong impact to determine the dynamic style of the plays.

A very special place in the artistic resume of the theatre needs to be given to plays such as: „Snow-white and the Seven Dwarfs“ directed by N. Stoicheva, „Palechka“ by R.Moskova, „Kosse Bosse“ by director T.Valov, „The Princess and the Swineherd“ by P.Panchev, „Good Morning, Goodnight“ by Donald Bisset, „The Dog That Could not Bark“ by S. Yordanova, „The True Christmas Tale“ by S. Petkova, „The Ugly Duckling” by Andersen, “Pessy and Illusion“ by Yur. Kokko , „Ну, волк, погоди“ by Al. Krulandski, „Capcho“ by N. Gernet, „Winnie the Pooh“ by A. Miln, „Sleeping Beauty“ Ragur, „Pippi Longstocking” by A. Lindgren, “Hansel and Gretel” by Andersen, „The Little Mermaid“ staged by Ol. Juggda, „The new clothes of the King“ based on Andersen, „The Snow Queen“ staged by Iv.Rajkov, „Legend for Lorelai“ by Hristina Assenova, T.Valov’s  “The Boy and the Wind”, T. Popova’s “Night Bird” and others.