The Lechevi Story
by Art M. Daane

Duo Letchevi

Veselin and Vladimir Lechevi, father and son with unusual musical instruments in their hands, have been moving the audience of Bulgaria and abroad with their various performances.

Solo mouthorgan

The native mouthorgan performer is an exotic phenomenon on Bulgarian stage.
There are just a few people who have devoted themselves to this musical instrument, and turned it into their passion as Veselin Lechevi has.
This is the beginning of the presentation of the gramophone record "On the Road with Music," written by P. Tabakov. There are pieces showing the typical Bulgarian folk motifs performed on the mouthorgan. Some performances are accompanied by a symphony orchestra. The soloist, Veselin Lechev, manages to show his abilities on his mouth organ, and creates a sensitive taste to the specific style of Bulgarian national folklore.
Veselin Lechev was born on 10 September 1951 in Shoumen. He finished Secondary School of Economics in 1969 and got his musical qualification in 1989 in Plovdiv.

Playing the mouthorgan has its own 33-year history. At the "4th International Artistic Festival" in 1968, Vesselin Lechev decided that he could extend his performaning activities by joining two other boys. They founded one of the first harmonica trios in Bulgaria. This was the first time that folk music was performed with such a non-classical instruments.

The trio changed personnel in 1973. This way he continued improving the image of the mouthorgan in Bulgaria. They won many awards, and performed all over the country. At the "5th National Artistic Festival" the jury awarded them 2nd prize with a silver medal.
During this period the trio continued extending their repertoire. Composers Yordan Yordanov and Dimitar Simeonov wrote new arrangments for them. The arrangements are:
"The Naples Dance" and "Caravan" by Elington
"Tarantella" by Pironkov
"The Reverie" by Toncho Rousev
"The Spring Waltz" by Dimitar Ghenkov
"The August Picture" and "Charleston" by Toncho Rousev
"Kumana" by Alan Burkley
"Goodbye My Love" by Stephan Dimitrov.

The trio's repertoire increased all the time, they presented different styles and almost all genres.
At the "6th National Artistic Festival" they won a gold medal.

The trio was transformed into a quartet in 1985. The young Vladimir Lechevi became a member of the band. At the time he was a 9 year-old schoolboy who played the Chord Harmonica. The quartet went on tours in Russia, Ukraine, Hungary and performaned together with "Folk Song and Dance" companies from Shoumen. One of the performances, that of 1987, was broadcasted by Russian National Television.

In 1990 the quartet was transformed into a duet by father and son Lechevi, and still exists today.
They started working with composer and arranger Zlatan Zlatev. His works enlarged and enriched their repertoire. It included Bulgarian folklore, Bulgarian and foreign classical and pop music, popular Russian songs, folk and pop music from the Balkan countries, country music and classical music. The result of this collaboration was the LP "On the Road with Music." It included arrangements by Christo Kovachev, Christophor Radanov, accompanied by the Symphony Orchestra of the Bulgarian National Radio in Shoumen. This record was released by Balkanton.

In 2001 Duo Lechevi made a CD "Folk Impression" with 19 melodies from different folklore regions in Bulgaria.

This CD can be ordered directly from:
Vladimir Lechevi: e-mail

Veselin Lechevi's Curriculum:
Second award at the National Radio Competition for young performers in Kotel in 1967.
4th National Artistic Festival - encouragement award in 1976.
Concert four to Russia together with Folk Song and Dance Company from Shoumen in 1978, broadcasted by the Russian National TV.
They took part in more than 30 theatre performances. The play Desire Under the Elms by Eugene O'Neil with famous Bulgarian actors Bogomil Simeonov, Boyana Kaneva and Petar Petrov was broadcasted by the National Bulgarian TV in 1979.
5th National Artistic Festival - silver medal in 1980.
Gold medal at the Festival of Transport Workers in Bulgaria - 1983.
6th National Artistic Festival - gold medal in 1984.
World Youth Festival in Moscow in 1985.
Gold medal at the Festival of Transport Workers in 1985.
Four concerts in the Ukraine together with Folk Song and Dance Company of Shoumen in 1987.
Four concerts in Hungary - 1988.
Gold medal at the Festival of Transport Workers in 1989.
LP solo gramophone record "On the Road with Music."
30th Anniversary Mouthorgan concert.
CD "Folk Impression" in 2001.
Recorded for the Bulgarian National Radio and TV, Russian and Ukrainian TV.

Rhythm and Solo mouthorgan
Teacher of Music and Physical Education

Vladimir Lechevi was born on 28 April 1978 in Shoumen. He graduated from Shoumen University in Musical Teaching in 2001. In 2002 he finished the National Sports Academy in Sofia in Physical Education. Since October 2001 he has worked as a Music and Physical teacher in Shoumen. He works as a teacher and as a performer. He leads the school choir.
He has been a soloist of the "Rodny Zvoutzy" choir since 1998. He has been one of the managers of "Rodny Zvoutzy" choir since 2001.
Since 1985 he has been a permanent performer of several mouth organ groups. Since 1990 he is a member of Duo Lechevi. He has been working with his father Vesilin Lechevi who has the chief manager and the chief executive of the band. In 2001 he took part in the release of his CD for mouthorgan Folk Impression.

Vladimir Lechevi's Curriculum:
100th Anniversary of "Rodny Zvoutzy" choir with the soloist Hristina Angelakova.
9th International Choir Competition Orlando Die Lasso in Kamerino, Italy in 2002 where he was awarded the silver medal together with "Rodny Zvoutzy."
Academic choir at Shoumen University. They took part in the 2nd National Competition of Bulgarian student choirs in Blagoevgrad at American University.
30th Mouthorgan Anniversary Concert.
CD Folk Impression in 2001.
Concert with a brass band - Simple Concert - prop. Vassilis Makridis - Greece.

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