IASPM International Conferences - Proceedings, Situating Popular Musics

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Remembering Gencho Gaytandjiev (1935-2010): On the impact of popular music studies in Bulgarian schools
Claire Levy

Last modified: 2013-01-22


Gencho Gaytandjiev, a pioneer in Bulgarian popular music studies, innovator in musical pedagogy, scholar, journalist, university teacher, and the author of numerous scholarly books and music text books, was among those revolutionary individuals who back in the 1970s began to challenge the conservative realm of traditional musicology that dominated Bulgarian music scholarship. This paper focuses on his pedagogical concept developed in the specific socio-cultural context within Bulgarian society and applied over the last four decades through multifaceted activities, including in the series of music text books designed for all grades of the Bulgarian general school. Aside from the fact that Gaytandjiev contributed a great deal to breaking the mainstream musicology in order to meet actual social demands, his pedagogical views stimulated the advanced humanitarian understanding that education, especially in the field of arts, must contribute to the development of thinking individuals able to appreciate various artistic values. By taking a closer look at the way such democratic, pluralistic and dialogical attitudes were introduced in the mass Bulgarian school, attention will be drawn also to the specific impact of popular music studies on Bulgarian society.

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