This November, Nikola Vaptsarov Drama Theater introduced a variety of plays in Blagoevgrad for its 100th anniversary. On Nov. 9, 2019, The Flying Princess, based on the book The Light Princess by George MacDonald and directed by Margarita Macheva, was performed by an ensemble of talented actors. Unlike many other fairy tales, the play tells a different story where the princess saves the prince. It will be performed on the Blagoevgrad stage once again in January 2020, and everyone, regardless of age, can go and see it.
In the play, Morgana, played by Jeanette Keranova, is a spiteful witch who wasn’t invited to the christening of her newborn niece. Seeking revenge, the witch arrives without an invitation and steals the gravity from the little princess played by Gergana Tsakova.
As the years pass, the adult princess can never take anything seriously. She is only passionate about swimming because when she swims, she regains her gravity.
One day, a prince from another country, played by Igor Damyanov, gets lost in the forest. He finds the princess swimming in her favorite lake, and he instantly falls in love with her.
When the witch Morgana discovers her niece loves the lake, she casts a magic spell to drain the lake by putting a hole in it. The only way to save the lake is to block the hole. The prince volunteers to sacrifice himself to fight the spell on the condition that the princess stays beside him the whole time, while the lake refills.
The prince succeeds in closing the hole, but he faces death as the lake starts to refill with him still at the bottom. In the end, after closing the hole, something unexpected happens. The princess is overwhelmed and scared for the life of the prince, so she pulls him out of the lake and rescues him from drowning with a kiss.
When the play ended, applause filled the theater, and the actors bowed. The theater hall was full of children, whose laugh filled the air. Some of the little girls were even dressed as princesses wearing sparkling crowns.
AUBG Advising Center Coordinator Maia Parmakova was in the audience with her daughter.
“I often go to the theater with my daughter, hoping that she would learn how to love and appreciate this kind of art,” Parmakova said. “Every day, I am trying to pass on to her the message from the play – that love is the basis and the solution of everything.”
The Flying Princess was the first production where the young actress Gergana Tsakova and the beloved Bulgarian actor Igor Damyanov worked together, and they were both dedicated to their roles in the play. Reflecting on their performances, both actors said they enjoyed playing their character.
“It turned out that playing in a children’s play is way harder than I thought,” Igor Damyanov said. “For me, this role was a real challenge, which I turned out to enjoy in the work process.”
“I liked the fact that the princess in the story is different from the ones we read about all the time,” Gergana Tsakovа said. “This is the first time I performed a role like this one, and it has become my favorite princess character so far.”
One of the rewarding parts of acting is getting to look back on the performance as something the actors produced together, and the more the actors enjoy what they do, the more enjoyable attending a play can be. There was definitely love put into the performance of The Flying Princess, which contributed to its success.
“It’s really hard to explain what draws me to the theater, but at the same time I could think of only one word – love,” Igor Damyanov said. “Love is the reason I keep coming out on the stage again and again.”
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