„Unique!“, „Shattering!“, „Incredible performance!“, „Impressive performance!“ – these are some of the audience’s reactions after the opening night of the staging of Gogol’s classic work „Diary of a Madman“… An ounce of romance, fine and masterful humour, and a virtuoso set design. A completely new image for the known protagonist – lyricism and a romantic smiley face that provokes our sympathy and turnes him uniquely attractive. „Genius“ – someone in the audience exclaimed for real. A genius interpretation and a perfect acting performance with a pleasurable aftertaste that makes you say (as you are leaving the theatre) – „True art is a feeling of spiritual enjoyment that touches all senses, while tickling the brain cells and making them work, feel, and act.” I was there too, watching, laughing, crying, empathysing, and clapping until my hands hurt. This is an experience that recharges you with the necessary dose of madness, so you can go on being normal in a not quite normal world. Treat yourself to a spiritual experience, tastefully and originally staged. You deserve it!
LIFE TODAY, BULGARIA, 2015
An Innovative and Original Staging of „Diary of a madman” by Gogol I was so utterly impressed that I mostly exclaimed and produced sounds like “aaah” and “oh”, while internally wondering why I quickly transitioned from a state of awe to one of laughter and one of genuine tearfulness. Was it the performance or was I myself going mad? The magician Nina Dimitrova has interpreted a classic play in a masterful way – without over-exaggerating it, with much finesse, just the right dose of humour and attention to detail. You watch it and get immersed in the madness that is quietly stirring inside of you and that screams at you – “But please ! I am the king, I have dreams and talents. I AM.” Enough with the normalcy that drive us mad. And the madness turns beautiful. A force that attracts and manipulates your senses. Genius Interpretation, Genius Set Design Nina’s intuition is impeccable. Everyone else would think that hiring a 23-year old for this iconic role is completely insane and an unnecessary risk. But they would be wrong. I am convinced that if Gogol himself had been sitting on the front row he would have enthusiastically applauded the performance of the young and talented Stanly. Amazing Nina, amazing Stanly. And believe me – watching this performance is a tremendous pleasure! Especially if you come equipped with a healthy dose of charming madness yourself.
BLOG. BG, BULGARIA, 2015
A Star Creates a Supernova. „Diary of a Madman“ is a major event in Bulgarian theatre. An event that will likely conquer the world. A modern Pygmalion, Nina Dimitrova created a living sculpture – a performance after Gogol’s “Diary of a Madman”. Shed id it with the panache of an ancient philosopher and a futurist. A woman who proves her power to move others. And just like a Pratchett puzzle, each sand particle in her art has a multitude of meanings. It is a tremendous pleasure to watch on stage a young actor whose qualities can shine so brightly at the very beginning of his career in theatre. Evidently, Dimitrova is guiding a new galaxy hitchhiker towards great art.
SLAVEIKOV SQUARE, BULGARIA, 2015
Enjoy an amazing performance!!!
HEY EVENT, BULGARIA, 2015
Simple and Genius! Nina Dimitrova has created a masterpiece play by fully inspiring the potential of a 23-year old actor… This bold and dashing performance features much imagination, hard work and attention to detail. Reading the genius text by Gogol through the eyes of a few talented artists, spectators find themselves in a world of velcro. A Bulgarian lady has managed to sculpt these sticky pieces into dozens of forms that morph from one shape into the other in front of our eyes like animation.
BULGARIAN NEWS AGENCY, 2015; VESTI BG, 2015; PRESSCLIPPING, 2015
“Diary of a Madman” Has All the Qualities to Repeat the Success of the Cult Performance “The Overcoat”. This performance is a confident claim for theatrical excellence by the talented director Nina Dimitrova. The audience is immersed in Poprishchin’s imaginary world which serves as his shield against the merciless attacks by the outside reality. The spectators cannot believe their eyes when the protagonist’s hospital room suddenly comes alive. This “magical” effect is due to an imaginative set design. The room is constructed by using thousands of meters of Velcro, allowing the actor to “paint” on the walls and “sculpt” the imaginings of his character. The audience comes to respect the multi-functionality of Stelian Radev who fully merges with his character, while demonstrating skills of an applied artist. First Class!
SEGA NESPAPER, BULGARIA, 2015
Diary of a Madman – brilliant Solo Performance Inspired by Gogol. Gogol’s humour is sharp and cutting. In Nina Dimitrova’s play this sharpness is softened by tenderness and sympathy towards the broken-hearted idealist who is in love and whose attempts to change the injustices of the world are endearing with their madness. The play makes us believe again in the power of theatre as an art of spontaneity and improvisation. We rediscover its roots in the pure joy of Acting, once experienced only in our childhood. Stelian Radev, with his colorful presence, transfixes the audience for ninety minutes. His secret likes in his highly reflective acting style that allows him to become one with the schizophrenic character of the clerk Aksenty Ivanovich Poprishchin. The inspiring performance by this young actor makes this unique character appear classic and modern at the same time.
SOFIA LIFE, BULGARIA, 2015
We have departed from the cliché that „Diary of a Madman” must be played by a famous 40-year old actor. These were the words of Credo Theatre founder Nina Dimitrova after opening night. And that’s exactly what the audience thought as well. The face of the actor switches between timidity and romantic audacity (his youth ads unexpected nuance to the character). Stelian spreads his wings – he is powerful and multi-faceted, alternating between polar states: over the shoulder of the little man – the insignificant Aksenty Ivanovich, naively in love with the daughter of his superior, with panache rises the imaginary king Ferdinand VII of Spain – a great artist and the pride of his subjects. In this interpretation of the tragicomedy, madness is the only way to preserve dignity… The original set design of Nina and Zuek consists of hundreds of meters of velcro. Against the grey color of the hospital room, Poprishchin paints by gluing and un-gluing Velcro elements that his fantasy powerfully brings to life.
NOVINAR NEWSPAPER, BULGARIA, 2015
Nina Dimitrova’s play is an inspired pallette of unimitable humour, captivating originality and moving lyricism. Her interpretation of „Diary of a Madmen“ proves that however mad or dysfunctional the world appears to be, it can also be magical, as long as we develop the senses to recognize this.
DIR.BG SITE AND BULGARIAN NATIONAL RADIO, BULGARIA, 2015