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Alexandroff Ragtime Band
Alexandroff Ragtime Band (ARB) was initiated in the summer of 1986 by Roumen “Fats” Alexandroff, banjo (bj). Their first performance was in April 1987 within the program of the National “Youth Jazz Stage”, carried from Sofia to Plovdiv. (ARB unites a circle of Sofia musicians with thorough interests in the traditional jazz – Ragtime, Blues, Dixieland.) It was founded as a trio, thus: clarinet (cl), banjo (bj) and tuba, but has been working as an open accepting system, which for the variable engagements was welcoming other musicians - piano (p), trumpet (tp), trombone (tb), saxophone (sax). The only rule with no exceptions was the absence of percussion instruments (dr).
From 1987 to 1990 ARB, together with the jazz reviewer Vladimir Gadjev, was being the host of the weekly “Saturday Jazz Club” at the youth center “Hristo Smirnenski”, Sofia. As a final performance of every season, in June, in the spacious park of the youth center, the national “Jazz In The Garden” festival was regularly carried out – the first in Bulgaria in the open. In the program of the club and the festival in fact were participating all the leading Bulgarian musicians and bands: Alexander Vladigerov and Vladimir Vladigerov, Anatoli Vapirov, duo and trio “Аccoustic Version”, the quadro “Focus” of Simeon Shterev, “Vesselin Nikolov Jazz Line”, “Dynamite Brass Band”, Vassil Pramakov Trio, trio “Apolon” of Tsvetan Denev, trio “Jazz Line” and others, as well as a number of youth formations from other cities in Bulgaria. According to available possibilities guest musicians from Europe and the U.S.A. also perform: George Adams (ts, fl), Tamaz Kurashvili (b), “Tuti Heat Тути” Хийт (dr), Nedra Wilar Недра Уилър (b), Karen Brigs Карен Бригс (v), Milcho Leviev (p), the Moscow reviewer Alexei Batashev and others.
From its foundation and now ARB is a participant in almost all national and international jazz festivals conducted in Bulgaria: Sofia, Sopot, Plovdiv, Ruse, Gabrovo, Stara Zagora, Teteven, Bansko, Burgas etc.
From 1987 with ARB continuously performs the singer Svetla Gosteva, who is at this moment on the pay-roll solo in the Plovdiv band “White, Green, Red”. Till 1971 Svetla Gosteva is a well-known and favorite name in Check republic, being a performer with a significant success in the international festivals in Psherov, Karlovi Vari and Prague. She has sung with the best traditional jazz orchestras , such as “Storyville Jazz Band”, and with the Prague “Steamboat Stompers” she has recorded a LP album: “Supraphon 0 15 1100”.
In 2007 within ARB perform:
Georgi Tsenev (p, cl, and voc), a graduate from the Music Academy - Sofia with clarinet, but after 1990 he plays mainly the piano. One of the constitutors of ARB.
Nevilian Gemijev (cl,voc), graduate from the Music Academy – Sofia in 1984. As a student he is performing with the Representative Guardsmen Orchestra and till 1990 he is one of the Orchestra of the Construction Forces. After that he has been performing in Germany for variable classic and jazz formations.
Julian Ianushev (sax) has been for many years the solo in Big Bands of the Bulgarian National Radio, Radio Leiptzig – Germany, as well as being a participant in a number of assembly festival formations in Europe.
Venilina Malinova (p,voc)graduated the Music Academy – Sofia in 1995. From 1995 to 1998 she was the leader of the ladies’ jazz formation “Mayrose”.
Roumen “Fats” Alexandroff, (bj,voc,lead) graduated Medicine in the Medical Academy – Sofia in 1981 г. From the mid 70’s he is a professional in music in various rock, blues, country and jazz formations, in which apart form banjo he plays bass, acoustic and slide guitars.
Nickolai Temniskov (tuba) is the Music Academy - Sofia Graduatee. In 1995 he finished the professor Konstantin Chilev Master’s class for chamber music. He is one of the constitutors of the formation “Academic Brass”. He has been a professor in tuba and chamber music in the Music High school “Liubomir Pipkov” and the Music Academy “Pancho Vladigerov”, Sofia.
Dimitar Uzunov (tuba) is a graduate rom the Music Academy – Sofia in 2002 г. with Master’s Degree. He is performing in the Bulgarian National Opera and is a participant in ARB from 2002.
From 2005 ARB was joined by the singer Аngelina Sekulova, whith whom Roumen Alexandroff is working also in the blues formation 5XL from 2000, аnd the last member the singer Desislava Tileva from September 2007.
In different times and for different performances with ARB has been playing: Svetozar Rusinov (cl,sax), Venko Zahariev (sax), Hristo Zlatinov (sax), Hristo Hristov (cl,sax), Georgi Georgiev (tp), Stoiko Radnev (tp), Gencho Vartovski (tp), Georgi Kornazov (tb), Vladimir Slavchev (tb), Nickola Marchev (tuba), Vassil Akimov, Nikolai Enev (tuba) and others.
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