Yulia Kancheva was born on July 1, 1956 in the city of Sofia. He graduated from NATFIZ "Kr. Sarafov" in 1980 - majoring in cinema and television directing. From 1980 to 1992, he worked as a screenwriter and director at the Studio for Television Films "EKRAN" at BNT until its closure. Since then, he has been a freelance screenwriter, director and producer. Since 1994, he has been teaching at the New Bulgarian University - Department of Cinema, Advertising and Show Business. In 2000, she was awarded the academic title of associate professor of cinema and television art by the VAK. He is the author of over fifteen documentaries, most of them full-length. In 2002, he finished his film "The Black Way of Christ's Brides" - produced by the German TV station ZDF and shown all over Europe. He is also the director of two TV theater productions, as well as one feature-documentary novel, distributed in over 200 American universities. He is the playwright of the play Doubles in the Rain, which was subsequently developed into an NFC-subsidized feature film script.
Months ago he completed the two-part feature film of which he is the screenwriter and director, which won the competition and was produced by BNT "Without Family Resemblance". Her films have been selected and awarded at many world film and TV festivals - Los Angeles, New York, Paris, Berlin, Lyon, Tokyo, Krakow, Bratislava, Neubrandenburg, Varna, Plovdiv, etc. She is a member of the international jury of the European festival "Prize Europa" in Barcelona. In 2002, Yulia Kancheva's work was presented specially at the National Museum of Women in Art in Washington, D. C. - USA. He is a member of the Union of Bulgarian Filmmakers, the Union of Bulgarian Journalists and the International Documentary Association based in Los Angeles, USA.
What profession did you dream of as a child?
Since I was a child, I dreamed of becoming an actress. My mother was a teacher, she loved the theater very much and took me to every new performance. At home, we "rehearsed" for a long time how I should convince the orderlies that I am already 7 years old. Back then, younger children weren't allowed in the salon. Alas, I often disappointed her and under their strict and probing gaze, I admitted my true age of 5-6 years. Due to not being able to cope with my acting task, we often had to enter through the back entrance or as it is now called "Back stage entrance". My mother already knew many of the directors and actors, and they generously agreed to usher us into Melpomene's temple outside the rules. To run across the stage minutes before the performance is tantamount to participating in magic - the silhouette and smell of the dusty sets, the bewitching perfume of the actresses wafting through the corridors to the dressing rooms, the lights of the spotlights like imaginary suns, intoxicated me and I gained the courage to I hide under the seat of the chair until the performance begins. And then the illusion began… I fell in love with her so much that despite my high school GPA and gold medal, I decided that I would apply for acting and nothing else. For more than ten years I had attended the theater group of Lili Raynova and Stefan Iliev, who became my second spiritual parents. The first year I was cut in the last – fifth round in NATFIZ, apparently after a big (nearly one hour!) hesitation of the committee and the victory of female competitors with many connections. But the following year, I already applied to almost all the majors of SU "Kliment Ohridski" and after 18 exams I had a sufficient score for all the professions I had indicated - I could become a journalist, psychologist, archeologist, philologist and what not. But the Academy drew me irresistibly and I applied there again - in addition to acting, however, I decided to try my hand at film directing. This speci alty had been available in Bulgaria for only two years, and I had not the slightest hope of succeeding in it. She was aerobatic and I didn't believe a 19-year-old girl had any chance. I applied just to find out what the exams were like. Much to my surprise, I progressed in them headlong and ended up with the highest score. The committee included the unique and charming Nevena Kokanova, the exceptional Hristo Hristov, the talented Georgi Dyulgerov and many other unique Bulgarian filmmakers… When I saw myself ranked first in film directing and third in acting for the whole of Bulgaria, I had to do it in two hours, maybe would, the most difficult choice of his life. Even now, I'm not sure if I made the right step - when I go to the theater, I secretly complain at the sight of the bouquets and the sound of applause. My profession as a filmmaker, mostly documentaries, is muddy, poor, lonely and often full of human destinies burning with anguish and unfulfilled. The aroma of real life is far different and bitter than the scents of the theater I dreamed of for so long…
What are your current professional ambitions?
My professional ambitions today, and the topics that excite me, despite their self-eating and sometimes destructive power for me, are accentuated in the creation of films, provoking people to their better Divine beginning. Regardless of whether they are feature films or documentaries. The color of truth must be one - a combination of the painful dark red color of blood and the soft blue mirage of dreams.
Are there times when professionally it is difficult for you as a woman? Or do you feel discriminated against or facilitated by your gender?
Often the camera crew, especially in documentaries, is made up of men - camera operator, sound engineer, camera technician, driver… Mostly male professions. In such a company, you learn not to pamper yourself and not to show whims - even though I'm kind of their boss. In addition, as a director, I am responsible not only for the artistic qualities of the future film, but also for the organization of this serious, responsible and difficult process - filming. "There is no slack here!" - say the men and I agree with them.
In my teaching activity at NBU, I also see neither discrimination nor facilitation due to my gender. I think that in modern life it is important what human and professional qualities you have, regardless of whether you are a man or a woman.
Would it be interesting to share when your dream of doing cinema started?
I have already described my "entry" into the world of cinema in quite some detail. I dreamed of him since I was a schoolgirl, but I thought that in order to be accepted as a film director, you had to be a mature man with a lot of life experience and at least a higher education. In fact, most of those accepted before me were just like that. So, my dream came true kind of quick and easy, but then came the real hard part - making good movies.
If you take stock of your journey, what would you point to as your greatest success?
Of course, the first thing that comes to my mind as a sign of success are my films with national and international awards - "Gallop, Gallop", "Without anesthesia", "Life is in front of us", "Ferris Wheel" and etc. I must also admit that the competitions I won for media specialization at the BBC - London, and then at the Thomson Foundation in Cardiff, as well as the Fulbright scholarship for nine months of teaching and research at the Universities of the USA in 2002.they make me happy and warm my heart in times of difficulty. I am extremely proud of the successes of my film students, who fortunately continue to consult with me. But if we talk about a real success story, I consider the birth of my twins in 1993 – a boy and a girl! Gift and test of God…
What do you spend more time on - your family or your profession? Circumstances dictate it or is it your decision?
I'm desperately trying to strike some sort of balance and make time for both my family and my profession. It's hard as hell and all working and ambitious women know that. 24 hours is not enough for me at all, although I try to steal from my dreams - I usually sleep 3-4 hours a day. My window is lit until the first rays of dawn - simply because then I don't need a lamp.
What do you want to teach your children?
On freedom, integrity, fear of difference, optimism, hard work and patience. Everything else is laid in their genes and destiny.
What message would you send to Bulgarian women?
Bulgarian girls are great girls - whatever their age. They are beautiful, elegant (even with their minimum wages), gentle, courageous, loving, workaholics. Bulgarian women, be yourself!
Favorite color? A song? Taste? Place?
Always stating a favorite feels like a limitation. But still – the color of rust, because it is the chemistry of time; the song "Is this the world we've created?" of Quinn; the taste of French fries, however unhe althy they may be; the sea - the most wonderful place that gives me energy, strength and hope.
Favorite recipe? Something you enjoy cooking for your family and friends?
When I cook, I take a mental break from everyday life. I do it with fantasy and a lot of love, and that's why, maybe, sometimes good results are obtained. I enjoy making a dish, a memory from my mother: boiled white chicken stewed in oil with rice, raisins, scallions, onions, s alt and pepper, which is wrapped in minced crusts, arranged in a pan, poured with chicken broth and butter, bake and finally make a topping of eggs, yogurt and cheese. It's very tasty and has sentimental value to me too! On the lost childhood…