Plamena Mangova won Second Prize at the highly prestigious Queen Elisabeth Competition in 2007 and embarked on a brilliant international career, which has taken her to almost every corner of the world. She studied with Marina Kapatsinskaya at the Sofia State Music Academy in Bulgaria, and then at the Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofía in Madrid with the legendary teacher Dmitri Bashkirov. She subsequently worked with Abdel Rahman El Bacha at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel in Belgium and over the years has received the precious advice of such renowned musicians as Leon Fleisher, Rosalyn Tureck, Menahem Pressler, Alicia de Larrocha and András Schiff. She has also won prizes at several other highly prestigious international piano and chamber music competitions, including the Paloma O’Shea Piano Competition in Santander and the Vittorio Gui Chamber Music Competition in Florence.
Plamena performs with such leading orchestras as the Staatskapelle Berlin, the philharmonic orchestras of Rotterdam, Luxembourg and Tokyo, the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, the Belgian National Orchestra, the BBC Philharmonic (Manchester), the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI (Turin), the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra, the English Chamber Orchestra, Sinfonia Varsovia, the Hong Kong Sinfonietta, the MDR Orchester Leipzig, the RTVE Symphony Orchestra (Madrid), the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra and the symphony orchestras of St Petersburg, Trondheim, Taipei and New Zealand.
Among the conductors with whom she has collaborated are Sir Colin Davis, Myung-Whun Chung, Yuri Bashmet, Sir Andrew Davis, Emmanuel Krivine, Walter Weller, Maxim Vengerov, Pablo Heras-Casado, Jaap van Zweeden, Gilbert Varga, Howard Griffiths, Pinchas Steinberg, François- Xavier Roth, Lawrence Foster, Jun Märkl, Uroš Lajovic and Emil Tabakov. A keen chamber music player, she has appeared with Renaud Capuçon, Augustin Dumay, Kolja Blacher, Mihaela Martin, Jian Wang, Pascal Moraguès, Alexei Ogrintchouk, Frans Helmerson, Alexander Kniazev, Dmitri Makhtin, and the Ysaÿe, Michelangelo, Vogler, Danel and Orion string quartets. She has occasionally performed two-piano or piano duet repertory with Boris Berezovsky or Maria João Pires.
Plamena has played at the Philharmonie and the Pierre Boulez Saal in Berlin, theVienna Konzerthaus, Bozar in Brussels, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, the Kennedy Center in Washington, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Herkulessaal in Munich, the South Bank Centre in London, the Leipzig Gewandhaus, the Moscow Conservatory and St Petersburg Philharmonic concert halls, the Luxembourg Philharmonie, and the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, and at such major festivals as Progetto Martha Argerich in Lugano, the Rostropovich Festival and the festivals of La Roque d’Anthéron, Montpellier, Menton, Bratislava and Mecklenburg- Vorpommern. Her first CD experience was with the Belgian label Cypres, for which, along with the brilliant Russian violinist Tatiana Samouil, she recorded the complete works for violin and piano of Prokofiev. Her first solo release (Shostakovich) was awarded a Diapason d’Or of the year 2007 by the French critics. This was followed by a CD of chamber music by the same composer, which received the Supersonic Award of Pizzicato magazine (Luxembourg). Her CD of solo piano music by Beethoven (sponsored by the Belgian Bank Fortis) was highly praised by France Musique and Diapason, as were her exceptional recordings of Strauss’s Burleske (2008) and Brahms’s Piano Concerto no.1 (2010) with the Belgian National Orchestra and Walter Weller (Fuga Libera label). The latter disc was highly praised by Bryce Morrison in Gramophone magazine. Her next release, again on Fuga Libera, was a highly praised CD of chamber music by Franck and Ysaÿe with the eminent Russian cellist Alexander Kniazev.
A passionate advocate of the music of the twentieth century and our own time, Plamena Mangova has given concert performances of music by Schnittke, Gubaidulina, Penderecki, Lutosławski, Bacewicz and Yusupov. Her most recent CD, ‘Bridges of Love’, features the highly original music of her fellow Bulgarian Albena Petrovic, long based in Luxembourg. This release, recorded at the Luxembourg Philharmonie and released by the German label Solo Musica, was nominated for the prestigious Opus Klassik (ex- Echo Klassik) Awards in Germany.