Moby Dick | Play | Ivan Vazov National Theatre
24 September, Tuesday 19:00 Main stage Premiere

Moby Dick

02 h 20 m
Age restriction
Not suitable for persons under 12

Production team:

Diana Dobreva
Stage version
Diana Dobreva
Set Designer
Mira Kalanova
Costume designer
Marina Raychinova
Petya Dimanova
Sound design
Yavor Karagitliev
Video design
Petko Tanchev
Deyan Georgiev
Light design
Ilya Pashnin
Assistant Director
Aleksandra Dokova

Moby Dick

based on the novel of the same name by Herman Melville



Alexander Sekulov

Stage version and direction:

Diana Dobreva


Mira Kalanova

Costume design:

Marina Raichinova


Petya Dimanova

Sound Design:

Yavor Karagitliev

Video Design:

Petko Tanchev


Deyan Georgiev


Ilya Pashnin

Assistant Director:

Aleksandra Dokova


Hristo Petkov, Vladimir Penev, Nencho Kostov, Plamen Dimov, Stelian Radev, Dimitar Nikolov, Yavor Valkanov, Asen Dankov, Pavlin Petrunov, Kire Gyorevski, Kaloyan Trifonov, Snezhina Petrova, Joreta Nikolova, Alexandra Vasileva, Paraskeva Dzhukelova, Bilyana Petrinska, Vyara Tabakova , Eva Tepavicharova, Albena Stavreva, Elena Ivanova, Martina Peneva, Zhaklin Daskalova, Boyan Chelebiev/ Nikola Sardzhev



The performance "Moby Dick" based on Herman Melville's novel tells the story of Captain Ahab, chasing a majestic white whale around the globe. In the biblical journey, he is accompanied by a crew ready to go with him to the end. Far from them remain their wives, whose dreams determine the direction of the ship.

The performance leaves the familiar seas of human passion. It shows its gravity, capable of changing the trajectory of death and life. It explores the depths of existence, among which floats the ever-white shadow of that which one runs from and which one pursues.

In the epic world of Diana Dobreva, the legendary whale is the inexplicable with which we live: the fear of time, the longing for the eternal, the search for the absolute.

Standing tall before the eyes of God.



The basis of the legendary novel about the white whale is the destruction of the ship "Essex", repeatedly attacked and sunk by a huge sperm whale on October 28, 1820. Only eight people from the crew were saved.

Other historical sources mention an albino sperm whale, Mocha Dick, who deliberately attacked ships and was killed off the Chilean island of Mocha.



The sperm whale is the largest of the toothed whales. Males reach a length of 20 meters and weigh up to 50 tons. On his forehead is a bag full of spermaceti, a liquid fat that was the main target of whaling in the early 19th century.



The first publication of Herman Melville's novel was in October 1851 in London under the title The Whale. In America, it was released a month later under the name "Moby Dick". The story is an authentic whaling tale.

The main character is named Ishmael. The biblical source of the name is unequivocal: "He shall be among men like a wild donkey, his hands shall be against all, the hands of all shall be against him."

The book is a romantic gesture of disdain for orderly terrestrial life, an ultimate denial of the depravity hidden in civilization.

The novel "Moby-Dick" by Herman Melville was first published in Bulgarian in 1935 by the "T.F. Chipev'' publishing house with a translation by Lazar Goldman. In 1962 the novel was published by "Narodna Mladezh" (People's Youth) with a translation by Nevyana Rozeva. Several publications of Nevyana Rozeva's splendid translation were to follow - by "Narodna Kultura" (People's Culture), 1977, part of the series - "World Classics", by "Georgi Bakalov" (1983, Vol.3 of Herman Melville's "Selected Works" in 5 volumes), in the series by "NGB" (Newspaper Group Bulgaria) in 2009 and by "Iztok-Zapad" (East-West) publishing house in 2014.



The book's publication does not bring its author any recognition or reward. Approximately 70 years separate him from world literary greatness.

Shortly after he died in 1891, they began to call him "a genius, a prophet, a god-fighter, the most encrypted writer, a magician, a fascinating creator, a maniac, a mystic, the author of meaningless pages called novels, a romantic philosopher and, of course, a Freudian."

The novel "Moby Dick" jumps over and changes the usual idea of literature. To this day, it remains one of the most influential books in the world classics.



Diana Dobreva has been director in the "Ivan Vazov" National Theater since 2017. She is the first Bulgarian theatre director whose performance was included in the official selection of the World Theater Olympics in Hungary in 2023.

Winner of the "Coup de coeur" award of the critics and the press for the best performance from the international festival in Avignon, France.

She was awarded the ASKEER 2007 Rising Star Awards (for Medea); ASKEER 2009 for costume design (for "Macbeth"); ASKEER 2015 for Best Performance (for House of Anger); ASKEER 2017 for best director (for "Wolves"); ASKEER 2019 for the best performance (for "Debelyanov and the Angels"); ASKEER 2019 for the best director (for "The Father" and "Debelyanov and the Angels"). She also won the Icarus 2021 Award for Best Director (for "The Son") and the Golden Rose Award.

Her performances have been invited to world festivals and stages in France, England, Japan, Germany, Monaco, Switzerland, Austria, Russia, Romania, North Macedonia, Slovakia, and Turkey.

Diana Dobreva is the director of the performances "Caligula" by Albert Camus, "The Father" and "The Son" by Florian Zeller and "Vazov's People" by Alexander Sekulov - awarded with several prestigious awards and part of the repertoire of the National Theater.


Alexander Sekulov is a playwright, writer, poet and journalist. He is the author of numerous novels.

He is the winner of three ASKEER awards for contemporary drama - for the plays "No Electricity for the Electric Chair", "Debelyanov and the Angels" and "Vazov's People".


With English subtitles on 21st May and 26th June.



Mirela Ivanova

Second Assistant Director:

Olga Nedyalkova, Elena Todorova


Nikolay Dimitrov NAD


Yanina Petrova


Alexander Bogdan Thompson


Atanas Igov


Premiere: 11th, 12th and 14th of February 2024


*The text uses parts of Konstantin Pavlov's poem "Interview in the Womb of the Whale".
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