Team StudentLab°

Rebecca Lawrence

Contrabass IEMA

Photo: Rebecca Blau

Name: Rebecca Lawrence

Where are you from? Seattle, Washington

Describe yourself in 1-3 sentences (1-3 Words): Jewish bassist from near the ocean. I like scratchy sounds and making people laugh and I like to drink beer and put my feet in the dirt.

Who is “Artist”? People with surprising responses to the world around them are artists. People who are interested in interpreting and reprocessing human experiences, filtering through the lens of their own.

What is extinct? Dinosaurs…but they are extinct only in physical form, but they live on in ideas and artistic interpretations.

What should exist? Everything that doesn’t hurt people or waste time. 

How do you feel about mistakes? I’m more patient with other people’s mistakes than I am with my own.

Superpowers? Everyone has their own unique strengths, these can be “superpowers” in the right context.

What is art for? Connecting people, surprising each other, questioning and challenging the world, interrogating hierarchies and political systems, and having fun. 

Devoted to radical creativity and community-building, Rebecca Lawrence (she/they)’s artistic practice explores contemporary and traditional classical music performance, renaissance and baroque historical performance practice, free improvisation, experimental, pop, and folk music, modern art, political activism, and social equity. Rebecca is the 2021-2022 double bassist of the International Ensemble Modern Academy in Frankfurt, Germany. She studied bass with François Rabbath, David Allen Moore and Paul Ellison, and earned Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from USC Thornton School of Music. Recent performances include the Lucerne Festival Academy, Ensemble Evolution at Banff Centre for the Arts, the Ojai Music Festival, WasteLAnd, and the Redlands Symphony. 

Gergana Ivanova

Visual Artist

Name: Gergana Ivanova

Where are you from? Sofia,Bulgaria

Describe yourself in 1-3 sentences (1-3 Words): Very ambitious and friendly person who loves to create with anything she gets her hands on.

Who is “Artist”? No one and someone who is simultaneously present while also modifying the surroundings.

What is extinct? Something that no longer exist, something death.

What should exist? Nature and also things that help us develop ourselves, emotionally and mentally.

How do you feel about mistakes? I feel that mistakes are necessary to find out what is right. But since every strategy is unique and what is incorrect for someone somewhere may be right, I don’t believe there is such a thing as mistake.

Superpowers? Unpredictability

What is art for Improving society by encouraging thought and enjoyment at the same time.

Photo: Gergana Ivanova

Gergana Ivanova was born in Montanan,Bulgaria. After that she moved to Sofia, Bulgaria where she obtained her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in graphic art and printmaking at the National Academy of Arts. She strive to reproduce notions related to the beginning and evolution of humanity as well as our three-dimensional reality by fusing various ideas. The process of working and having joy while doing it is what matters most to her. She is participating in a number of events both in the country and abroad, including some in Germany, Italy, Turkey, Istanbul etc. Along with the National Academy of Arts award for bachelors – Wittgenstein House Summer Academy – Vienna, she also have a prize for a young author in the fifth forum, “Small Graphic Forms.” After that, Gergana was one of the chosen authors for the 8th FIG Bilbao-Paper Art Festival in Spain’s Cubos de las Tentaciones. In the 10th International Triennial of Bitola Graphic art, she also received the special award for the growth of global contemporary graphic art. 

Rebecca Blau

Flute IEMA

Photo: Elza Zherebchuk

Name: Rebecca Blau

Where are you from? Born in a town in the forest with lot of dumplings, since that little bit of nomad.

Describe yourself in 1-3 sentences (1-3 Words): “It says a lot about the world, my child,” said the father to the boy, “that the stupid are happy and the smart are depressed.” “Are you depressed?” asks the kangaroo. “Nah,” I say. “You?” “Nope.”

Who is “Artist”? Everyone and no one

What is extinct? Dissolution

What should exist? For sure not brussels sprouts.

How do you feel about mistakes? Love them. Do them all the time.

Superpowers? I make the best pasta salad in town. Promise.

What is art for? Makes you think.

The flutist Rebecca Blau is a member of various chamber music formations and is particularly interested in contemporary music. She has played as a member of various ensembles at the Beijing Modern Music Festival in China, the Warsaw Autumn Festival and the Festival de La Habana de Música Contemporánea in Cuba. In 2021 Rebecca played with the Ulysses Ensemble organized by Ulysses Network and IRCAM Paris together with conductors Pierre Bleuse, Jean-Philippe Wurtz and Beat Furrer at Manifeste Paris, Fondation Royaumont and Mixtur Festival Barcelona. Furthermore, in the 21/22 season she will be a member of the International Ensemble Modern Academy, with whom she will play concerts at Manifeste Paris, Lucerne Festival, Time of Music Finland, Gaudeamus Muziekweek Utrecht and the 180° Festival Sofia, among others. Rebecca Blau received her first flute lessons at the music school in Suhl. She completed her bachelor’s degree at the Robert Schumann Hochschule in Düsseldorf. In 2017/2018 she studied with an Erasmus grant at the Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel and at the Pôle d’Enseignement Supérieur Bordeaux Aquitaine. In early 2022 she completed her Masters in Performance Classics with a focus on Interpretation in Contemporary Music at the Hochschule Luzern with Pirmin Grehl. Rebecca is also interested in politics and socio-cultural issues in society. In order to be able to move things as a musician, she founded the “Musicians for Solidarity” project together with other musicians in 2020, which addresses taboo topics & empowerment and provides critical impulses within the music scene.

Irina Stoyanova

Dance, performance

Name: Ira Stoyanova

Where are you from? Born in Kazakhstan, since 2015 in Bulgaria

Describe yourself in 1-3 sentences (1-3 Words): !rrorational   ExperiMovemental   !mproVisualisator

Who is “Artist”? Me, you, they, a cat, a tree, a building, the nature, the internet, a chance…

What is extinct? It’s subjective question. For digital users – books and live friends are extinct. For previous acrobat – tricks are extinct. For an artist – words are extinct, because art is a language itself.

What should exist? No obligatorily. What we need – should exist for us. For a dancer – music should exist. For an actor – audience should exist. For soul – beauty should exist. For oxygen – trees should exist. Space and time will exist until the end. 

How do you feel about mistakes? My moto “ERЯOR brings !NNOVATION”

Superpowers? !magination & fantasy; !mprovisation & spontaneity; !ntegration of different arts; !deas generation

What is art for? Way to be alive in process of expressing of appearing from the cosmic source images in the present moment.

Photo: Ira Stoyanova

Irina Stoyanova is an interdisciplinary experimental artist from Bulgaria. She integrates  Performing (dance, theater) and Visual arts (installation, digital art). Through improvisation she provokes the imagination of the audience! Irina finished “Fine Arts school” and graduated MA “Architecture & Design” in UACEG, Sofia. Irina has wide movement experience in  Contemporary dance, Street dance (hip-hop, popping), Capoeira and Contact Improvisation. She participated  in many Dance programs such as “Linkage”, “ATOM choreographic series”,  “Poetic bodies”. She participated in various solo and group dance performances in Bulgaria. Irina realized a few own projects. „Impro Art Lab“ – communication through  dance, image and sound. Performance „Gamma Crucis“- postmodern dance with many objects, that was played at „Microdance“ festival and „ATOM evening“ in 2021. Irina’s biggest project is Performance-installation „MirroMorphosis“. It contains decoration from geodesic dome and mirror wall, colourful costumes and masks. The performance was presented in „Hot Bodies“ residency, „Doza” gallery, “Koncept” and “Fabrica” clubs in 2022.

Jacobo Robledillo

Viola IEMA

Photo: Jacobo Rebledillo

Name: Jacobo Díaz Robledillo 

Where are you from? I’m from Ávila, Spain. 

Describe yourself in 1-3 sentences (1-3 Words): Nice, funny and optimist. 

Who is “Artist”? Artist is any person that gives beauty to the world doing whatever he does. 

What is extinct? Many things are extinct: Dinosaurs, many animals, a lot of plants. 

What should exist? Should exist almost everything, to have diversity. 

How do you feel about mistakes? Mistakes are part of life. They help us to improve and learn. 

Superpowers? Would be nice to have some… 

What is art for? For make the world even more beautiful. 

Spanish violist Jacobo Díaz Robledillo (Ávila 1993), is an IEMA 2021/2022 scholarship Holder. He studied his Bachelor degree at the Conservatori Superior de Música del Liceu with Prof. Ashan Pillai. Following his studies in Barcelona, he moved to Germany to study Master Solist program at the Hochschule für Musik Detmold with Prof. Veit Hertenstein. Additionally he has attended solo and chamber music masterclasses with Nobuko Imai, Garth Knox, Geneviève Strosser, Donald McInnes, Peijun Xu, Casals Quartet and Auryn Quartet. His interest in contemporary music gave him the opportunity to work with composers such as Bernhard Lang, Kaija Saariaho, Diego Jimenez Tamame He collaborates often in orchestras and ensembles such as Ensemble Modern, Detmolder Kammerorchester, Davos Festival Camerata, Ensemble Risonanze Erranti, Ensemble Horizonte, Grafenegg Academy Orchestra, Ostrava New Orchestra, playing under the batons of such conductors as Stefan Asbury, Lucas Vis, Johannes Kalitzke, Ingo Metzmacher, Holly Hyun Choe, Lautaro Mura, Ustina Dubitsky and Francesc Prat. Jacobo has participated in various festivals to perform solo and with ensembles such as Festival Manifeste, Wittener Tage für Neue Kammermusik, Klangspuren Schwaz Tiroler Festival für Neue Musik, Davos Festival Young Artists in Concert, Ostrava Days Festival, Allegro Vivo Festival. 

Maria Tabakova

Dance, performance

Name: Maria Tabakova

Where are you from? I am from Plovdiv, Bulgaria, however I live in Sofia for the last 8 years.

Describe yourself in 1-3 sentences (1-3 Words): I am curious and enjoy communicating with different people, learn from them and share views. I love everything related to the movement and I like to transform thoughts and emotions in it.

Who is “Artist”? The one who can looks outside and inside. I’ve recently seen a quote of Jung “The one who looks outside, dreams, the one who looks inside, awakes”. I really think the artist do both.

What is extinct? Nothing really.

What should exist? The endless possibilities of life.

How do you feel about mistakes? I learned to love them but I am still learning not to repeat them.

Superpowers? Independence and will power are all the superpowers we need.

What is art for? To challenge us and to improve us.

Photo: Maria Tabakova

Maria Tabakova is a philologist who adores languages, movement and communication, that’s why she enjoys to mix these interests and to translate ideas through dance. She graduated from Sofia University with Italian philology and she had a Master degree in International business at New Bulgarian university/ University of Urbino “Carlo Bo”. She’s been dancing since she was 7 years old. She has a background in sport dance, but when she moved to Sofia she became more interested in contemporary dance because of its freedom. She was part of Derrida Dance Port program, Focus Dance Screen program and in 2020 started to create her own projects. She is a coordinator, choreographer and a dancer in “Status project” which includes dance performance and movement workshops. At the beginning of 2022, she worked as a choreographer and dancer in her own dance film “Labour”.

Team StudentLab° Event


Goethe-Institut Bulgaria

19:30 | Student Lab° For yet another year 180° Festival - Laboratory for Innovative Art (Bulgaria) in partnership with the International Ensemble Modern Academy (Germany) sets up a laboratory for students and young professionals. The students Rebecca Lawrence - double bass (USA), Jacobo Rebledillo - viola (Spain), Rebecca Blau - flute (Switzerland), Maria Tabakova - dance (Bulgaria), Gergana Ivanova - visual arts (Bulgaria) and Irina Stoyanova - dance (Bulgaria) will present the outcome of their collaboration inspired by this year's festival theme existinct.


Copyright 2023 © All rights Reserved.

Visual Identity: Yasen Zgurovski; Web Design: Alexandar Hadjiev