Masterclass 16 – 22 June 2018 Bulgaria

Masterclass 16 – 22 June 2018 Bulgaria


Saturday 16 June – Friday 22 June 2018, Pazardchik Bulgaria

With Maestro Martin Akerwall / Maestro Frans Rasmussen
Pazardzhik Symphony Orchestra, Bulgaria.

The masterclass includes 170 minutes podium time. Additional sessions in conducting technique, individual video analysis, evaluation, personal coaching. All orchestral sessions will be recorded on video. The masterclass has no age limit or level-limit.

Enjoy the Bulgarian summer while immerse yourself in the symphonic universe of Brahms in some of his most outstanding masterpieces. Refine your rehearsal technique and artistic understanding of how to create the special German sound of Brahms.

We welcome you to an intense and inspiring week where you will have fun being challenged in a non-competitive atmosphere with the opportunity to sharpen your conducting technique and strengthen your understanding of yourself as a conductor.

We take pride in meeting the demands for high quality masterclasses with an faculty that ensures you a “no-nonsense” masterclass with more active time and focus on you. Maestro Akerwall and maestro Rasmussen are praised for having created and maintained masterclasses that are humanly inclusive, in addition to being almost relentlessly demanding no matter your level.

Maestro Rasmussen and Maestro Akerwall are both well-known and respected Scandinavian coaches and conductors. As participant you will experience yourself in the company of a dynamic and intensive duo who works with your individual skills and improvement from different approaches. Yet their common principles and understanding in culture and the art of conducting makes it for you an progressive efficiently and instructive one-direction-experience.

The masterclass also includes a lecture in how you build and retain a long lasting career as a conductor with 12 efficient goal-setting rules.

Deadline 16 May 2018

Brahms Symphony 1
Brahms Symphony 2

Brahms Tragic Overture
Brahms Academic Festive Overture

All repertoire will be rehearsed during the masterclass with Pazardzhik Symphony Orchestra. To gain the maximum benefits from the course we recommend you to prepare and study all repertoire prior to the start of the masterclass. This gives you the best basic for getting as much as possible out of the week.

Participation fee:
€ 1250/active(170 minutes podium-time)

The participation fee includes 120 minutes podium time in front of Pazardzhik Symphony Orchestra and 50 minutes podium time in front of a piano-duo. Additional sessions in conducting technique, individual video analysis, evaluation, personal coaching.

Payment of fee latest 3 weeks after the acceptance of your application.

Your application will be processed within few days. Participants are accepted successively.

Apply here:

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– Arrival

SUNDAY  10.00 – 17.00
– welcome
– Beginning of the masterclass.

MONDAY  10.00 – 19.30
– 10.00 – 14.15 Orchestral rehearsal
– 16.00 – 19.30 Conductors training / Video / Rehearsal with piano-duo

TUESDAY 10.00 – 19.30
– 10.00 – 14.15 Orchestral rehearsal
– 16.00 – 19.30 Conductors training / Video / Rehearsal with piano-duo

WEDNESDAY 10.00 – 19.30
– 10.00 – 13.00 Orchestral rehearsal / Conductors training
– 14.00 – 17.00 Orchestral rehearsal/ Video
– 18.00 – 19.30 Feedback / evaluation

THURSDAY 10.00 – 19.30
– 10.00 – 14.15 Orchestral rehearsal
– 16.00 – 19.30 Conductors training / Video / Rehearsal with piano-duo

– 10.00 – 13.00 Orchestral rehearsal/ Conductors training
– 14.00 – 17.00 Orchestral rehearsal/ Video
– 18.30 Dinner and closure of the masterclass


The venue takes place in Pazardzhik Symphony Orchestra’s concert hall in center of Pazardzhik. The tuition focus during the masterclass will be on conducting technique, aspects of score analyzing, rhetoric communication and rehearsal techniques. We will also on psychological aspects of orchestral conducting, preparing yourself and the score for rehearsal and concert. Please be aware of, that your active part in the masterclass is doubled with both maestro Akerwall and maestro Rasmussen teaching you both simultaneously and separated. One-hour personal coaching sessions will be given on request.


Pazardzhik is situated along the banks of the Maritsa river, Southern Bulgaria. It is the capital of Pazardzhik Province. During the masterclass you get the chance to experience the rich flavored local Bulgarian culture.We arrange a visit to one of Bulgaria’s finest and oldest winery located in the mountains of Rhodopes. We will taste samples of their Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. We will also visit one of Pazardzhik’s Bulgarian folk-music and folk-dance schools.

The daily lunch will take place at Hotel Primavera.

Pazardzhik is located 100 km from Sofia Airport. We arrange Pick-Up Shuttles from Sofia airport. Prize € 35 per Shuttle (max 3 person per shuttle). Please inform us of your arrival time and flight company latest 12 days before the masterclass begins.

We recommend Hotel Primavera. It has been a popular choice for its close proximity to the concert hall. By informing the hotel you are a participant in our masterclass the price for a room will be € 26. For booking send an E-mail to Mrs. Line Smilenova at

All participants will receive a personalized video of their rehearsals in a professional sound recording. Participants are welcome to bring their own recording device.

A 60-minutes one-to-one coaching session is possible at additional cost. The one-to-one coaching session will on choice of the participant with Maestro Rasmussen or Maestro Akerwall.

The course will be taught primarily in English and German and secondarily Swedish or Danish for Scandinavian participants.

Orchestral Conductors Academy are very proud and happy for the collaboration with Pazardzhik Symphony Orchestra. The orchestra has a professional yet friendly minded approach to our masterclasses which gives us an unique working situation for the participating conductors. Since 2005 the orchestra has enjoyed the leadership of artistic director and conductor Maestro Grigor Palikarov. Under his leadership for a short time he managed to lead the orchestra to a high position in the music community in Bulgaria. The orchestra has been invited to participate in the most prestigious music festivals such as “Sofia Music Weeks” and “March Music Days”.

The Pazardzhik Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1969. From 1970 to 1992 its artistic director was Professor Ivan Spasov, one of the most significant for Bulgarian culture figures the composer, conductor, teacher with influence in public life and with numerous publications. It’s thanks to him that the institution has proved itself so fast on professional stage. He has also given the Symphonic Operatic Society rich, orientated towards different genders and styles politics. The orchestra performs not only classical works, acclaimed worldwide, but also works from contemporary composers and Bulgarian authors some of which written especially for them. The orchestra’s mobility and its professionally acclaimed members are factors that attract many famous conductors and soloists in Bulgaria and foreign guests and young gifted people as well.

The orchestra has taken part in „New Bulgarian Music” preview. It has implemented a string of tours in Poland, Italy, Greece, Spain and records in the Bulgarian National Radio, Bulgarian National Television, long-lasting plates, CO. It was a great acknowledgement for the orchestra to receive invitation for participation in the European Tour performing the “Troubadour” Opera. It proved to be a glamorous success at the beginning of season 2003-2004 in Austria, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, France and Norway. Keeping its independent concert activities, since 2000 the Pazardzhik Symphony Orchestra has become part of the Symphonic Operatic Society „Maestro G. Atanasov” and has participated in many premieres and performances of operettas and operas.

OCA reserves the right to changes at any time without notice. The masterclass are financed entirely on the fee from the participants. Your fee are completely refundable before the deadline. After deadline we refund in case your place can be taken over by another applicant. In case OCA cancels the masterclass OCA will refund paid fee at any time. Any additional costs such as flight, etc will not be refunded.