Theo Popov

Composer/Thereminist

thinking

 

 

 

After a childhood spent singing Bulgarian folklore and Christian Orthodox songs, composer THEO POPOV began his formal compositional training by studying electronic music with Paul Lansky and musical geometry with Dmitri Tymoczko. Having explored various forms of sacred and folk traditions, he cultivated a special interest in Classical Antiquity, and has for the last decade worked on researching and incorporating it into his own oeuvre. His first opera, NERO ARTIFEX, received a full stage production at Princeton University to enthusiastic acclaim in March 2010. A three-act drama in Classical Latin with libretto by Mariah Min and Veronica Shi, the opera presented one of history’s most notorious emperors as a well meaning but incapable ruler, a gullible dreamer and unfortunate artist.

Since then, Theo has focused primarily on writing for the theater stage. In May 2012, his second opera Once Upon the Wind, based on the Russian folktale, “The Soldier Who Captured Death,” with libretto by Kate Light, premiered within the framework of the Composer Librettist Development Program at the American Lyric Theater. The opera received a second performance with The Secret Opera in New York City in 2014, after being selected as a winner in the company’s inaugural Composers Competition. He is returning to the American Lyric Theater to develop the opera The Halloween Tree, based on a Ray Bradbury novella, with librettist Tony Asaro.

In addition, Theo has written two puppet shows, a number of choral and orchestral pieces, art songs, chamber and electronic music. Popov completed his composition degree at Princeton University, where he studied with Steve Mackey, Peter Westergaard, Bill Whelan, Barbara White, Paul Muldoon and Kofi Agawu. He has also studied theremin with Lydia Kavina, voice with David Kellett, piano with Edmund Niemann and dramaturgy with Cori Ellison and has been a resident at Yaddo.

Contact Theo at theo@theopopov.com