NGO "Pierrot" State Puppet Theater - Stara Zagora, Stara Zagora Municipality, Stage Balkans Foundation, Swiss Cultural Program in Bulgaria, National Center for Theater - Bulgaria joined forces in 2003 and launched the unique for Bulgaria:


Assoc. Prof. Peter Pashov:… the director's laboratories have started. In order to develop and enrich the instruments of actors and directors, to open new territories.
This is useful for all - professional actors get the opportunity to work in an area that repertory theaters do not offer…

People are being refined, in a fortnight a spiritual environment is created, a spiritual camp in which everyone participates.
Peter Tzankov: Professionals are involved in the director's laboratory, and this is an accumulation of experience in searching for another type of creative language other than the realistic, well-known theater, taught at NATFIZ. None of us knows what will be born in the end. We look for the process and finally we show people one step of the process…

In the field of puppet theater, this is something unique. This kind of work involves a lot of pampering. The young actors who are actively involved are captivating with their cleanliness and genuineness, lack of prints, and this makes them a wonderful subject matter, and they learn a lot about concentration, creative process, hygiene….


I International Director's Laboratory “Puppets in the Balkans”

The laboratory is intended for young directors, actors, set designers, playwrights and anyone wishing to perfect and expand their creative instrumentation in the field of adult puppetry.

Theme: "He and She - Sinful Love"
Artistic director: Assoc. Prof. Peter Pashov
Set designer: Marieta Golomehova
Composer: Peter Tsankov
Directors involved: Predrag Bielosevic - Bosnia and Herzegovina, Vladko Stevkov - Macedonia, Teodora Popova - Bulgaria, Sibel Altan - Turkey, Evi Kaburaki - Greece
Actors from: Puppet Theaters of Stara Zagora, Kardzhali and Varna participate.




In 2004 Stara Zagora hosted for the second time:

II International Director's Laboratory "Puppets in the Balkans"

Topic: Balkan legends
Artistic director: Assoc. Prof. Peter Pashov
Set designer: Marieta Golomehova
Composer: Peter Tsankov
Directors involved: Sergio Dlacic - Croatia, Liliana Dimic - Serbia and Montenegro, Veselka Kuncheva - Bulgaria, Nikolay Boyadjiev - Bulgaria
Actors from: Puppet Theater - Stara Zagora and graduates from the class on "Acting for Puppet Theater" at the National Academy of Theater and Film Arts "Kr. Sarafov" by Assoc. Prof. Zhenya Pashova




In 2005, the director's laboratory crossed the borders of the Balkans:

III International Director's Laboratory

Artistic director: Assoc. Prof. Peter Pashov
Set designer: Marieta Golomehova
Composer: Peter Tsankov
Directors involved: Deborah Morris - UK, Darko Kovacevic - Macedonia, Veselin Boidev - Bulgaria
Actors from: Puppet Theater - Stara Zagora, students in the class of Acting for Puppet Theater at the National Academy of Fine Arts "Kr. Sarafov" by Assoc. Prof. Zhenya Pashova, students in the specialty "Scenography" at the National Academy of Arts, students stage shots in Plovdiv




In 2006, the following are held:

IV International Director's Laboratory

The directors are: Sanela Milosevic - Serbia and Montenegro, Margarita Blush - USA, Emil Jordanov - Bulgaria.

Actors from the Puppet Theater - Stara Zagora and students from the Acting Class for Puppet Theater class at the National Academy of Theater and Film Arts “Kr. Sarafov” by Assoc. Prof. Zhenya Pashova participate in the creative process.

For the first time, students from the specialty of film directing and camerawork are involved in the laboratory, creating a documentary film "Laboratory", reflecting the creative period.

It is decided to hold creative laboratories as biennials.



From March 27 to April 9, 2008,

V International Director's Laboratory of Visual Theater - a zone for the excitement of the director's imagination

Artistic director: Assoc. Prof. Peter Pashov
Set designer: Marieta Golomehova
Composer: Peter Tsankov
Directors involved: Maya Vincent - France, Kaloyan Paterkov - Bulgaria, Peter Pashov, Jr. - Bulgaria.


Teachers from the puppet department at the National Academy of Science and Technology "Kr. Sarafov" are invited to participate in the laboratory.
Within the laboratory, the work of the Puppet Theater Acting Department is presented to the interested theater and academic community in Stara Zagora and the region.



In 2010 (15.09 - 10.10) is held:

VI International Creative Laboratory

Subject: Exploration of the improvised stage play Comedy Del Arte.
Artistic director: Istvan Nagi /Hungary/
Assistant Director - Gabriela Hadzhikostova / Hungary /
The actors from: State Puppet Theater - Stara Zagora and actors under the Melpomena program are participating.

The fruit of the creative process is the creation of the show "Comedy aha-aha-del arte".




Since the beginning of June 2012 has started:

VII International Creative Laboratory

Topic: The Musical - a provocation for creative pursuits in synthetic performing arts
Artistic director: Istvan Nagi / Hungary /
Assistant: Gabriela Hadzhikostova / Hungary /
Composer: Peter Tzankov / Bulgaria /
Costume Designer: Adriana Naydenova / Bulgaria /
The actors from the State Puppet Theater - Stara Zagora and actors from the Melpomena program are participating. The creative process ends with the staging of "We Will Not Pay" (by Dario Fo).
A BNT2 team is making a documentary about the work of the creative laboratory under the name "Who Still Does Not Want to Pay" with director Yuri Dachev.




VIII International Creative Laboratory

launches in the summer of 2014.

The topic being explored is FEAR. A team has been invited to document the process.


Veselka Kuncheva * - Project Manager ”
Marieta Golomehova * - set designer
Hristo Namliev * - composer of the project and composer of the documentary
Yavor Kunchev - choreographer
Christian Thomas (France) - sculptor
Tomas Moravek - Czech Republic - lighting artist
Katarina Durikova (Katarína Ďuricová - Slovakia) - lighting artist
Veselin Hristov - cameraman and photographer
Maria Stoyanova - director of documentary
Nina Altaparmakova - editor
The actors and workshops of the State Puppet Theater - Stara Zagora are participating.

The purpose of this lab was not only to engage the participants in the immensity of the theatrical illusion, but also to engage, share, infect the ordinary viewer with our continued and unremitting desire to discover that the theater is like the universe - infinitely high, infinitely deep.

The object that was investigated during the lab is human fear. His faces and incarnations. His ability to control the world around us and ourselves. What human nature is capable of rebelling against its most archaic enemy - Fear?

The results: The work from the laboratory grew into the creation of the theater performance for adults "Fear" with director Veselka Kuncheva, who brought four nominations and three IKAR 2015 awards to the performance. The documentary "Fear" was also created with director Maria Stoyanova, who participated in selections at International Documentary Film Festivals in Europe.




On September 25, 2016


The lab will aim to explore Dostoevsky's world and analyze the passion of man to go against himself.

Artistic director Veselka Kuncheva

Playwright Ina Bozhidarova

Set designer Marieta Golomehova

Composer Hristo Namliev

Choreographer Alessandro Solima (Italy)

Artistic lighting Ivaylo Markov

Assistant director Lubomir Kolaksyzov

Theater critics: Svetla Beneva, Yuriy Dachev

Cinematographer Alexander Radoev

Participants: Maya Bezhanska, Eva Danailova, Milena Ermenkova, Vanya Kamyanska, Evgenia Angelova, Plamen Dimov, Stefan Dimitrov, Stoyan Doichev, Ivan Stanchev, Dilyana Spasova, Latina Berovska, Elitsa Stoyanova, Tanya Georgieva, Denitsa Yanakieva, Tatyana Andreeva, Bilyana Raynova, Tsveti Penyashki, Lyuben Chanev, Kiril Antonov, Kaloyan Georgiev, Stanislav Matev

Conducting period: 25.09 - 10.10.2016




X International Creative Laboratory

The tenth international creative laboratory - Atelier "Orwell" is held in two stages:

First stage:

31 May - 15 June 2018

Topic: Human self-deception and the power of power, based on George Orwell's allegorical novel Animal Farm.

Creative team

Art director Veselka Kuncheva

Set designer Marieta Golomehova

Composer Hristo Namliev

work with students from Pace School of Performing Art - New York, USA

The ART Office Foundation is a partner in the project.

Display of results: June 14, 2018

Photographer Yana Lozeva


Second stage:

Running period: August 15 - 29, 2018. The focus is on George Orwell's cult novel "1984".

The same creative team works with actors from the Stara Zagora Puppet Theater.

The theme that the creative team explores:

"We study man in our time. How does he feel, what is happening to him? What processes are taking place? Can he survive? We believe it should survive. It's also in Orwell: When the main character is being tortured, he declares, despite the pain, “You cannot destroy man. The human spirit is eternal! He will survive!” His tormentors reply: “The human spirit will not survive because we have destroyed it!”

George Orwell noticed the processes of spiritual decay in our society and examined them with the precision of a surgeon. His novel 1984 is like a scalpel that cuts through human nature to discover what has turned us into the monsters we are.''

Veselka Kuncheva

Display of results: August 29, 2018

Photographer Rad Dimitrov




XI Creative Laboratory - atelier "The Master and Margarita" by Mikhail Bulgakov (2020)

Display of the results: September 15, 2020

Art director Veselka Kuncheva
Set designer Marieta Golomehova
Composer Militsa Gladnishka
Choreographer Stefan Vitanov
Photographer Alexander Bogdan Thompson
Participants: Militsa Gladnishka - guest, Nikolay Vodenicharov (Niketsa) - guest, Latina Berovska, Ivana Boboicheva, Maria Joykeva, Zlatina Karaeneva, Kaloyan Georgiev, Lyuben Chanev, Kiril Antonov, Yordan Tinkov, Tsveti Penyashki




XII Directing Creative Laboratory "The Poets of Stara Zagora" (2022)

The main topic on which 5 teams of director, set designer and actors have been selected to work is "The Poets of Stara Zagora".

Artistic Directors:

director Veselka Kuncheva

scenographer Marieta Golomehova

composer Milen Apostolov

Selected teams:

TEAM 1 director Tsveti Penyashki, scenographer Yasmin Mandelli - actors: Alek Churcich, Ahmet Ismail, Nikol Vasileva, Antonia Kundakova, Rusita Boeva, Svetlozar Nachev, Radoslav Arnaudov, Volena Apostolova

TEAM 2 director Ivaylo Nenov, scenographers: Ekaterina Andreeva and Iva Slavkova - actors: Dilyana Spasova, Martin Dimov, Tanya Georgieva, Ivan-Alexander Doychev, Latina Berovska, Mario Topalov

TEAM 3 director Milena Milanova, scenographer Rada Petrova-Andonova - actors: Elitsa Mateva, Tanya Yorgova, Magdalena Slavcheva, Lyuben Chanev, Marian Dulchev

TEAM 4 director Ivana Boboicheva, scenographer Tina Todorova - actors: Valentin Vasilev, Denitsa Doncheva, Melin Erdinch, Blagovest Mitsev, Radinela Toteva

TEAM 5 director Yordan Tinkov, stage designer Georgi Barakov - actors: Anna-Valeria Gostanyan, Maria Pencheva, Stefan Maradzhiev, Valentin Metodiev, Gergana Libova, Iva Karamancheva