What is ISTF Danail Chirpansky


Danail Chirpansky International Student Theater Festival was founded in 2017 following its selection by the International Fund for the Promotion of Culture of UNESCO. It is the first Bulgarian-based festival for graduating performances from Theater Academies across Europe and the world. Our first edition made us believe that Bulgaria can become a long-term host of an international event which encourages freedom of communication between young artists and inspires them to work and develop. And, vice versa, this inspires our creative team!

Our main motivation is Danail Zhelev – Chirpansky, and our purpose is to keep the memory or his great love for theater.

About Dani


Dani may not have been a celebrity, but he changed the life of many people with his perseverance, tireless dedication, constant strive for perfection, courage, human understanding and love that he passed on to those around him. This was Dani, who passed away after a tragic accident in the spring of 2016.

Since we didn’t want to allow such rare and precious presence to leave us, we decided that in his memory, we would start a tradition, inspired by him and his dreams and turn it into an event which would help other young students realize their potential. Our aim is to give them the inspiration that our beloved friend possessed. 

Our Dream

We wish to create an international forum for graduating performances in order to help young performing arts professionals enrich their knowledge and skills with the support of experienced professionals. By establishing a network between them we want to support the exchange of experience between peers and professionals from diverse schools and origins. In this way we hope to achieve two main goals: first, to nurture an environment which inspires the development and enrichment of the traditional schools and practices of each country and second, to support our local and national culture by giving our guests a chance to get to know Bulgarian life and traditions.


The first edition of the festival proved to us that nothing is impossible and nothing can stop us from pursuing our dreams. We can’t wait to share this feeling with you again!