Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares

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Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares
Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares (UK album).jpg
4AD reissue cover
Studio album by
Released1975 (1975)
GenreBulgarian folk music
LabelDisques Cellier
CompilerMarcel Cellier
USA release (1987)
Nonesuch Cover (1987)
Nonesuch Cover (1987)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4.5/5 stars link

Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares (translated as "The Mystery of Bulgarian Voices") is a compilation album of modern arrangements of Bulgarian folk songs featuring, among others,[1] the Bulgarian State Radio & Television Female Vocal Choir, with soloists Yanka Rupkina, Kalinka Valcheva and Stefka Sabotinova; and the Filip Kutev Ensemble.[2]

The album was the result of fifteen years of work by Swiss ethnomusicologist and producer Marcel Cellier and was released in 1975 on his small Disques Cellier label. Some of the recordings he made himself; others were taken from the archives of Radio Sofia.[2] The album won a Grand Prix du Disque award.[2]

In the 1980s, Ivo Watts-Russell (founder of the British 4AD label) was introduced to the choir from a third or fourth generation audio cassette lent to him by Peter Murphy, singer from the band Bauhaus. He became thoroughly entranced by the music, and tracked down and licensed the recordings from Cellier.[3] So in 1986, it was re-released on 4AD in the UK, in 1987 the Nonesuch label in the US and on the Philips label in other territories.

Subsequent albums were released with similar titles: Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares, Volume 2 [1988], which won a Grammy Award in 1989;[4] Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares, Volume 3 [1990]; and Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares, Volume 4 [1998].

NPR ranked Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares, Volume 1 the 78th greatest album ever made by women.[5]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Pilentse Pee" (Пиленце пее) [Birdie Sings] – 2:31
  2. "Svatba" (Сватба) [The Wedding Procession] – 1:27
  3. "Kalimankou Denkou" (Калиманко Денко) [The Evening Gathering] solo: Yanka Rupkina – 5:06
  4. "Strati Na Angelaki Dumashe" (Страти на Ангелаки думаше) [Haiduk Song] – 2:37
  5. "Polegnala E Pshenitsa" (Полегнала е пшеница) [Harvest Song from Thrace] – 2:02
  6. "Mesechinko Lyo Greïlivka" (Месечинко льо грейливка) [Love Song from the Rhodopes] – 2:31
  7. "Breï Ivane" (Брей Иване) [Dancing Song] – 1:31
  8. "Ergen Deda" (Ерген дядо) [Diaphonic Chant] – 2:50
  9. "Sableyalo Mi Agontse" (Заблеяло ми агънце) [The Bleating Lamb] solo: Kalinka Valcheva – 4:31
  10. "Prituritse Planinata" (Притури се планината) [Song from the Thracian Plain] with orchestra – 2:45
  11. "Mir Stanke le" (Мир Станке ле) [Harvest Song from Thrace] solo: Stefka Sabotinova – 3:10
  12. "Schopska Pesen" (Шопска песен) [Song of Shopsko] – 1:27
  13. "Polegnala E Todora" (Полегнала е Тодора) [Love Song] – 3:38


  1. ^ Burton, Kim (November–December 2010). "Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares" (PDF). Songlines. pp. 66–67. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 October 2011.
  2. ^ a b c Buchanan, Donna A. (2006). Performing democracy : Bulgarian music and musicians in transition. Chicago, Ill. [u.a.]: Univ. of Chicago Press. p. 346. ISBN 9780226078267.
  3. ^ Troughton, Richie (1 December 2011). "4AD Founder Ivo Watts-Russell On Le Mystère Des Voix Bulgares". The Quietus. Retrieved 22 July 2014.
  4. ^ "Past Winners". Grammy.com. National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on 21 July 2014.
  5. ^ Tsioulcas, Anastasia (24 July 2017). "Turning The Tables: The 150 Greatest Albums Made By Women, No.78". NPR. p. 8.

External links[edit]