12th Annual Black Box International Theatre and Dance Festival 2018

The 12h annual Black Box International Theatre and Dance Festival will be held from May 31 to June 6, 2018, in Plovdiv. The festival features 10 international and Bulgarian works in the fields of theatre and contemporary dance from 9 countries. The festival's partners are the Bulgarian Ministry of Culture, Municipality of Plovdiv, Embassy of Israel, U.S. Embassy, Italian Cultural Institute, Plovdiv Drama Theatre, National High School for the Performing and Screen Arts Plovdiv and Plovdiv 2019 Foundation.

Leading Bulgarian stage director and actress Diana Dobreva is a special guest of the 2018 The Black Box ITDF.



Official opening

May 30, 7 pm, Chamber Hall – Plovdiv Drama Theatre



Production of Plovdiv Drama Theatre - Bulgaria

Author: Matjaz Zupancic

Translation: Lyudmil Dimitrov

Director: Alexandra Petrova

Art Direction: Desislava Bankova

Composer: Milen Apostolov

Cast: Dobrin Dosev, Todor Darlianov, Radina Dumanyan, Dimitar Banchev

An apartment is rented by three friends who are looking for a roommate. They have posted an ad and are waiting for the candidate. One wonderful day the mysterious Vladimir has arrived. His past is a mystery. By applying the "divide and conquer" strategy, Vladimir will do everything necessery “peace to rule” in this house. An exciting story about the blurred line between order and tyranny, love and repression, and "normal" and extreme. The well-know Slovenian playwrite Matjaz Zupancic is a professor of directing in AGFRT, the Ljubljana Academy for Theatre, Radio, Film and Television and a multiple winner of the biggest theatrical award in Slovenia – Grum Award.



May 31, 7 pm, Chamber Hall – Plovdiv Drama Theatre

Romanza - triptyque of the intimacy

Cie Twain physical dance theatre - Italy

Choreography and direction: Loredana Parrella

Dancers: Elisa Melis, Yoris Petrillo

Lighting designer: Cesare Lavezzoli

Costumes designer: Loredana Parrella

Costumes production: Sartoria Mulas

Distribution: Lune Fè Magrini

Production: AcT/Cie Twain 2013

Supported by: MiBACT - Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism

In residence: Centro d'Arte e Cultura – Città di Ladispoli

I Studio - Festival of Choreographic Miniatures - National Theatre - Belgrade – Serbia, II Studio - International Physical Theatre Festival - Unity Theatre – Liverpool - England, III Studio - Teatro Valle - Rome - Italy

Best Choreography Award at the CortoinDanza Festival 2011 in Cagliari

Shortlisted Kilowatt Festival 2013

Romanza, trittico dell'intimità is a path melting as an antidote in our miserable time to revive the dormant impulse of passion, where Love and Pain become emotions expressed through the fragile laws of our bodies. The work is composed of three parts: "Angeli e Insetti", "Riflesso" and "Féroce présence".

Cie Twain, a company having accomplished more than twenty productions over twelve years, was born in 2006 when the Italian choreographer and director Loredana Parrella met the Belgian designer Roel Van Berckelaer. Since 2011 Cie Twain physical dance theatre is a Dance Company supported by MiBACT - the Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism, Regional Governament – Regione Lazio, City of Cerveteri, City of Ladispoli. In residency at Sala Bausch – Art and Cultural Centre of Ladispoli (Rome) and Teatro Claudio in Tolfa (Rome).

Cie Twain physical dance theatre performed in hundreds of Italian's theatres in cities like: Rome, Naples, Florence, Turin, Milan, Palermo, Bari, Bologna, Vicenza, Venice, Trieste, Modena, Ravenna, Perugia, Ancona, Salerno, Catania, L'Aquila, Pescara, Spoleto, Siena, Cagliari, and abroad in England, Serbia, Spain, Germany, Bulgaria, Cyprus and U.S.A.

In 2015 in cooperation wih TIDA (Teatro instabile d'Aosta), the company organizes the Scena Pubblica Festival, financed by the Zetema cultural project.

Froм 2015 to 2018 TWAIN Residenza di spettacolo dal vivo is National Artistic

Residency supported by MiBACT - the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage, and Regione Lazio regional government.

In the last few years the company has been participating in high profile festivals and reviews in the seasons of some among the most important theatres, such as: Sala Cuarta Pared_Madrid, Teatri di Vetro Festival_Roma, Finalista Premio Equilibrio, Auditorium Candiani_Mestre, Festival CortoinDanza_Cagliari, La Mama Spoleto Open Festival, Teatro Palladium_Roma, fabbricAzioni Festival_Rieti, Finalista Premio Teatri del Sacro , and many others.

This guest performance is supported by the Italian Cultural Institute in Bulgaria.



June 1, 5 pm, Plovdiv Drama Theatre

Creative meeting with Diana Dobreva - stage director


Diana Dobreva is a leading Bulgarian stage director and actress. She won a directing award at the Avignon Festival, France. For her roles in cinema and theater she has received the Golden Rose and Askeer awards. Dobreva has also won Askeer award for Best Performance and Direction. In the last years she directed - "Macbeth", "Casanova", "House of Wrath", "Wolves", "Salome", "Caligula", "Debelyanov and the Angels". Her works boldly expand theatrical aesthetics. As of 2017 Diana Dobreva is a stage director at Ivan Vazov National Theatre – Bulgaria.






June 1, 7 pm, Zoom Zone - Plovdiv Drama Theatre

Program – Plovdiv in Focus

First Steps in Pantomime

National High School for the Performing and Screen Arts, Plovdiv

First Steps in Pantomime is a performance created by the dance and pantomime pedagogue Guram Birkadze and students in the Pantomime program at the National High School for the Performing and Screen Arts, Plovdiv. The high school is unique on the Balkan Peninsula, training high school students in the field of theatre, cinema and contemporary visual arts.

The performance consists of several etudes combined by the universal language of the mime art and inspired by the new reading of the young performers.



June 4, 7 pm, Chamber Hall – Plovdiv Drama Theatre

Contemporary Dance Program

What Is Jazz? / The Way We Play

Alina Sokulska - Ukraine

Alina Sokulska is an internationally acclaimed jazz dance artist, choreographer, performer, instructor and researcher. Alina started her path as a solo dancer since the very early age gaining experience and knowledge in many dance styles and cultures. Jazz dance has become her major passion and for the moment she is one of those dancers in the swing dance community elaborating on her own dance language with intertexts of swing, blues, bebop, tap dance, UK jazz, afro and latin, comprehending jazz as an African rooted art form. Through her theoretical researches of jazz dance history she broadens the limits of what is called "jazz dance" to African-American dance, both in practice, art and a teaching approach.

What Is Jazz? / The Way We Play - The way Jazz sounds now. The way Jazz would look like now embodied in motion, if one day in the vernacular jazz dance history it wouldn’t have ceased to be danced, cherished by the music.

Inspired by Marquis Hill Blacktet.

Festival participation history of the piece: Rock That Swing (Munich); Paris Jazz Roots (Paris); Evolution Solo Weekend (St. Petersburg); Brothers-In-Jazz (Madrid); Barcelona Jazz Weekender (Barcelona); Moscow Christmas Swing Dance Camp (Moscow).


I saw a fish in the river(it had some of you in it)

Lior Lazarof - Israel

Concept, choreography: Lior Lazarof

Dance, interpretation: Tímea Laza, Sharon Barbakov

Original music: Ádám Márton Horváth

Supported by: Life Long Burning, Workshop Foundation, Ultima Vez, L1 Association, EMMI

Premiere in the International Dance Festival SzólóDuó | Mu Színház |

Budapest, Hungary, BÁNKITÓ Festival | Bánk, Hungary, Echo Echo festival of Dance and Movement | Derry, Ireland

Lior Lazarof is a freelance dance and movement artist. She began her professional dance training at the MASPA Ga’aton, Israel. She later continued her studies in “The Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance”. After earning her B.Dance and a teaching certificate, she went to Hungary to pursue a career as a movement explorer. Lior’s work and research had been acknowledged as she received several different grants and residences that supports her artistic practice. In her projects she collaborates with artists from various disciplines, exploring the border point between the physical body and a defined space.

The abstract world created in the dance parallels reality through the physical and spiritual self-revelation. The audience is to be lured into a grey zone, where the image overwrites the presence. The continuous and fluid movement creates a trance sensation that opens the gates for the dancers subconscious. The dancers appear as fish in the river, or the river itself, change their relations in space moving from horizontal to vertical and vice versa. What happens in the point the two rivers meet, do they become one and flow together?

This guest performance is supported by the Embassy of Israel in Bulgaria.



Autumn Eckman Dance - USA

'Sardine', investigates the ways in which human interactions--from the simple to the complex-- form deep relationships that are both physically and metaphorically attuned through synchronous movement.

AutumnEckmanDance (AED) devises work from an integrated approach to an ever-broader range of contemporary dance languages and the body in the living moment. By manifesting stories through body-based lenses, each project aims to draw a deeper understanding of the social, cultural and political fabrics of choreography as well as the ways in which dance fosters connection between us. AED has been presented nationally and internationally at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Bates Dance Festival, Harvest Chicago Contemporary Dance Festival and the Detroit Dance City Festival.

Autumn Eckman received her ballet training from Susan Banks Bebee, Tom Pazik and the Houston Ballet Academy before dancing professionally with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Luna Negra Dance Theatre, Giordano Dance Chicago, Lucky Plush Productions, Ron De Jesus Dance and the State Street Ballet. Her performance repertoire includes works by Benjamin Millepied, Twyla Tharp, Robert Battle, Ohad Naharin, Nacho Duato, Gus Giordano, Daniel Ezralow and Mia Michaels.  Currently, she is a member of Chicago-based company, The Cambrians. From 2009-2014 she served as Assistant Artistic Director and Resident Choreographer of Giordano Dance Chicago and Director of Giordano II as well as Artist-In-Residence for State Street Ballet and has choreographed for DanceWorks Chicago, Big Muddy Dance Co., Wylliams-Henry Dance Company, Missouri Contemporary Ballet, Western Michigan University, Grand Valley State University, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stephens College and the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Forming AutumnEckmanDance in 2015, her work has been presented at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Bates Dance Festival, Jazz Dance World Congress, Midwest RAD Festival, Florida Dance Festival, Detroit Dance City Festival and the Kalamazoo Aesthetic Research and Education Program. From 2009-2015, she was an Instructor of Dance at Northern Illinois University and has taught as master faculty at Hubbard Street’s Lou Conte Dance Studio, Visceral Dance Center, State Street Ballet Summer Intensive, Florida Dance Festival, Summer Dance Lab (Walla Walla, WA), Arizona Jazz Dance Showcase and the Bates Dance Festival’s Young Dancers and Professional Division

An Iowa Arts Fellow, Autumn received her MFA in Choreography at the University of Iowa. Currently, she is a Visiting Professor of Dance at the University of Arizona.

This guest performance is supported by the U.S. Embassy in Bulgaria



June 5, 7 pm, Chamber Hall – Plovdiv Drama Theatre

Contemporary Dance Program

In Light of Those You Love

Retrospect Dance Theatre - UK

Christopher Thomas and Hannah McGlashon founded Retrospect Dance Theatre (RSDT) in July 2017. Both Directors trained at Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance.

Christopher and Hannah first collaborated in their final year of training creating a duet, which was part of the official selection for 31 Internationaler Wettbewerb fur Choreographie Hannover 2017. From here the partnership was formed and Retrospect Dance Theatre was born.

Both directors are passionate about creating compelling narrative work with honest and true performances. The company creates work by using a method acting based choreographic process, where movement is generated from honest emotion. It also collaborates with a multitude of art forms to engage a variety of audiences, these include spoken word, film, dance, intricate stage design and music to create emotionally immersive dance theatre.

Festival Participation History

14th June 2017 – _31 International Wettbewurb fur Choreographie Hannover 2017, Theatre am Agei, Hannover

14th October 2017 – _FLUX International Dance Festival 2017, Rotterdamse Schuwberg, Rotterdam

17th October 2017 – _Pitch 2017, The Point, Eastleigh

5th November 2017 – _Dance Proms, The Royal Albert Hall, London

17th February 2018 – _Resolution 2018, The Place Theatre, London

21st April 2018 – _SCRATCH, Norden Farm Centre for the Arts, Maidenhead June 5,



Lee Jung In – Korea

Choreography, Dance : Lee Jung In

Live Music : Lee Dae Heung

Light : Park Ju won

Movement Assistant : Lee Seung Ju

Demand intimacy as holding out a sweat hand. I cannot help holding the hand, but I pour cold sweat due to the instant inconvenient contact. Soon, I close my eyes.

From the intricate daily senses to hysteric feelings.

Unintended instant contact, momentary inconvenience, stiffened senses upon that feeling. From the intricate daily senses to hysteric feelings. Can dance express peripheral nerves?

Skins was shown in Hidden Door Festival, Edinburgh, Scotland, GB, INACT Festival, Strasbourg, France, High Fest International Performing Arts Festival, Yerevan, Armenia, International Contemporary Dance Festival, Mexico, Mexico city, Dance Days Chania 7, Crete Chania, Greece, Varna Summer Theater Festival, Varna, Bulgaria, 31st, TanzHafen Festival, Linz, Austria, Modafe Korea(Premiere), Seoul, Korea, Seoul International Choreography Festival, Seoul, Korea, Mono Tanz Festival , Budapest, Hungary (EU Premiere), Dance Festival, Kaunas, Lithuania , Bratislava in Movement, Bratislava, Slovakia, Dance Bridge – Session House, Tokyo, Japan.



June 6, 7 pm, Chamber Hall – Plovdiv Drama Theatre

Official Closing


Holektiv, Czech Republic

Concept: Holektiv - Andrea Vykysalá, Karolína Křížková, Eva Stará

Music: JAK- Matěj Coufal & Julie Lupačová

Light design: L‘non

Costumes: Barbora Procházková

Stage design: Anežka Kalivodová

Supervision: Adéla Laštovková Stodolová

Supported by: HAMU, La Fabrika, Cirqueon, Cooltour, De‘Longhi, KC

Zahrada, Art District Praha 7, Nadace Život umělce

Photo: Dita Havránková

,Ah! How sweet the cofee’s taste is,

Sweeter then a thousand kisses,

Milder then sweet muscatel.

Coffee, coffee I must have it,

And if someone wants to treat me,

Ah, my cup with coffee fill!‘

( J.S.Bach, Kaffeekantate BWV 211)

The coffee-machine shines. The coffee flows. Kaffee! Women sitting down.

Gossiping. Klatsch! Kaffeeklatsch. A theatre piece with dance, acrobatics

and coffee.

*The term „Kaffeeklatsch“, meaning gossiping at coffee, has its origins in

the first half of the 19th century. In those days, women weren't allowed into

public cafés, and so they started to consequently meet in their own

households, where they drank coffee and talked. The men started calling

that new custom Kaffeeklatsch.

Holektiv was founded in 2016 as an annual cooperation by three performers. The young artistic company combines mime, contemporary dance, acrobatics and clownery.

Eva Stará studied at the Duncan centre conservatory (CZ) and at the department of pantomime at University of performing arts in Prague. She took part at the festival of New Europe 2013 and the festival Fun Fatale as a choreographer. She is involved in the creational process of children’s performance prepared by Studio Light of Lenka Tretiag. As an interpreter, she acts at following plays: Jeníček a Mařenka (State Opera House in Prague, directory: M. Forman), Modrý pták (National theatre in Prague, directory: Š. Pácl), Oni a Marie (directory: M. Stará – festival Za Dveřmi, Open Air Hradec Králové), News Garden (chor.: M. Purucker – festival Tanec Praha) and at Domácí úkoly z pilnosti (theatre Alfred ve dvoře) etc.

Karolína Křížková studied at the department of pantomime and non-verbal theatre at University of Performing Arts in Prague. As a performer she took part in festivals - My Mime, PAN, Prague’s Quadriennale (project He war - Tribes), Fun Fatale, etc. She participates in the performance Among us (directory: H. Strejčková, chor.: V. Ondrašiková), Jeníček a Mařenka (State Opera House in Prague), Modrý pták (National theatre, director: Š. Pácl), Nao devils vs. B-human (VerTeDance + VOSTO5, work in progress).

Andrea Vykysalá studied at the Duncan centre conservatory (CZ) and at the dance department at University of Performing Arts in Prague. Up to now, she took part in various performances – Sophi (chor.: S. Puchowska), Žízně (chor.: M. Talaga), Materia (chor.: D. Pala), Salome (State Opera House Prague, director: M. Trelinski), Among us (director: H. Strejčková, chor.: V. Ondrašiková), News Garden (chor.: M. Purucker) and as a performer at festival KIOSK (SK), Warsaw Dance Days (PL), Tanec Praha (CZ), Malá inventura (CZ), Nová generace (CZ), etc. She teaches contemporary dance technique.

This guest performance is supported by Státní fond kultury České republiky



Accompanying events

May 31 - June 6

Sounding Dance

Participatory Sound Art Project

Renzo Spiteri - Malta

Four Plovdiv’s choreographers and sound artist Renzo Spitteri from Malta will create SOUNDING DANCE during the 12th Black Box International Theatre and Dance Festival.

An immersive project that experiments with awareness through sound, inviting publics to engage with sound/space experiences.

An internationally respected experimental electronic artist, composer and musician, Renzo is renowned for his artistic versatility, creative use of sound and unlimited modes of expression. He shares his work base between the UK and Malta, although his own projects as well as collaborations with artistes in all genres of artistic expression take him to different countries around the world. 

n 2004, Renzo spent a 5-week work intensive at the Sonic Arts Research Centre (SARC) in Belfast (N. Ireland) as musician in residence, and in 2008 he was appointed National Ambassador to the European Union’s “Year for Intercultural Dialogue”. Renzo is co-founder and co-curator of the new media collective Open Works Lab; artistic director of Għanafest Malta World Music Festival; Cultural Ambassador to Le Meridien Malta; artistic director of the annual music event Teatru Unplugged held at Malta’s National Theatre Teatru Manoel.