Bulgarian Music

Balkan Beats music holiday

Come and study traditional Bulgarian music at Wild Thyme with professional musician Dimitar Trifonov. Mitko is an excellent teacher who has been playing the accordion and teaching Bulgarian folk music for over thirty years.

Each day the group of musicians meets to learn new tunes. The session involves one to one time with Mitko as well as group work where all the musicians play together. The songs you learn are either dances (horo) or songs usually accompanied by singing voices (pesen). You will learn a few of each.


What to expect

The traditional instruments in Bulgarian folk orchestras in this region are the accordion, a large drum (tapan), a form of upright violin (gedulka), a wooden flute (caval) and the Bulgarian bagpipes (gaida). However the music suits a whole range of western instruments such as the violin, guitar, bass guitar, keyboard, clarinet, saxophone and flute. Mitko is assisted by Chris, who plays the violin along with the group and helps out with language translation.

These sessions suit musicians of any level of expertise apart from absolute beginners. Some of the tunes are easy to play whilst others are much more demanding and fast. No previous knowledge of Balkan or Bulgarian music is required.  Just bring yourself, your instrument and a willingness to learn something new.

The lessons are generally suitable for those who want to learn the songs and dances by ear and a recording device is always a good accessory to bring along so that you do not forget the basics of each tune overnight. Mitko provides sheet music if required.  The holiday ends with a small concert where students play their newly learned tunes.



Dimitar Trifonov (Mitko), has been playing the accordion all his life and has worked as a professional musician for over twenty years. Mitko teaches at the Popovo Music School but also acts as musical director for the Palamartsa folk ensemble, a renowned group who sing, dance and play music in the local Kapantsi tradition. He has a deep knowledge of Bulgarian traditional music.  He played for many years in the Popovo orchestra and ran the orchestra for the famous Popovo traditional dancing school.  He has travelled all over Europe performing with his students.

He is a patient teacher and will pass on his encyclopedic knowledge of Bulgarian dances and songs for any instrument. 


Begins with evening meal on first night and finishes with breakfast on the final morning.  

8.30 am Breakfast

9.15  Music Tuition

1.30pm Lunch

2.30 Practice time/ Free time

7.30 Dinner (& small concert on the final evening)

The programme is flexible and the schedule may be adjusted to suit the needs of students and teachers.

What's included

Cost: 500 Bg lev


  • 3 hours of music tuition per day
  • Breakfast, lunch & dinner
  • Help yourself to selection of teas through the day
  • Accommodation in Wild Thyme Eco Guesthouse
  • Small group of maximum 7 people


  • musical instrument and recording device
  • walking shoes for local walks
  • sun hat, sun cream & sunglasses

Non participating partners are welcome.

Not included:

  • Beverages
  • Flights & transport of musical instruments
  • Transport from airport. We can help arrange this.