Founding Executive Director
Born in Varna, Bulgaria, our Founding Executive Director, Kalin Tchonev, studied piano performance and music theory in high school before obtaining a Bachelor's and Master's of music at the National Academy of Music in Sofia, Bulgaria, and additional Master's degrees in Choral Conducting and Piano Performance from University of South Carolina School of Music. In addition to his piano performance and conducting experience, Kalin brings skills in music management, international tours, and festival organization to create phenomenal performance opportunities for musicians the world over.
In 1999, Kalin founded Varna International Music Academy (VIMA)with his father, Prof. Marin Chonev, an accomplished Bulgarian conductor. Together they brought many musicians from the USA to Kalin's hometown: Varna, for Conducting Workshops and large-scale choral-orchestral performances.
VIMA is one of the few international summer academies offering a comprehensive program combining unparalleled music instruction and fully-staged orchestral productions with costumes and sets. Throughout the program, soloists, choral singers, conductors, and instrumentalists attend a variety of masterclasses and individual coaching while preparing to perform in the fully-staged opera and choral-orchestral productions.