Александър Мануилов

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Alexander Manuiloff

Alexander Manuiloff is writer, playwright and screenwriter of Bulgarian origin whose works have been invited to important theatre festivals and venues on four continents, among which Theatertreffen, Berlin; Under the Radar, New York; and L’Europe de Théâtres, Paris. Winner of EURODRAM 2017 (Germany).

Alexander’s dramaturgy has been translated into thirteen languages so far and it is already studied in some university programmes in the US. (Georgetown University). A translation of his play "The State" by Nathalie Bassand and with a preface by Tim Etchells was published in 2019 in Paris by L'espace d'un Instant/Maison d'Europe et d'Orient.

After his 2017 tour to Washington’s ForumTheatre/Woolly Mammoth, the DC Theatre Scene called him “a rare creator, the Washington Post found his piece “exceptionally thoughtful”, while the Broadway World defined Manuiloff’s writing as being “akin to magical realism”.

In 2019 Alexander Manuiloff became the first non-German speaking writer to be invited to the prestigious 44-year-old Mülheimer Theatertage festival of contemporary drama.  He is the first Bulgarian writer to be ever invited to Theatertreffen Berlin in its festival history of more than half a century. 

Two separate Silver Lion prize winners at the Venice Biennale, Rimini Protokoll and Ferran Dordal, chose him to work with on their projects in 2016.

Alexander's first book, Film, received the Bulgarian Writers’ Guild Award for the best fiction debut book of 2005 while his second one came out in Berlin in 2008 (Language Ideas). Now he is just finishing his first novel, The Book of Changes, with editor Paulina Micheva and Nathan Cooper. In 2019 he got Bulgaria's national award for dramaturgy Ivan Radoev for a children's play.

Scriptwriter of several short films selected at plenty of festivals around the globe.

Alexander translates new English theatre plays into Bulgarian (for the London National Theatre’s programme NT LIVE) and has so far introduced to the local audience the latest works of John Hodge, Tom Stoppard and David Hare. The newest translations of Shakepseare’s The Tempest, Romeo and Juliet and Richard III into Bulgarian are also Alexander’s work upon commission from the British Council in 2016.

Alexander Manuiloff has denounced publishing on paper in Bulgarian and in a Bulgarian publishing house (Christmas, 2011). The reasons for this move are explained here.

A former journalist for BusinessWeek Bulgaria as well as for various national and international papers and news agencies, in 2012 he got the award of the Association of European Journalists for the best piece of independent research in Bulgaria.

Part of the New York Drama League exchange programme 2012. Chairman of Radar Sofia, an independent not-for-profit organisation that has opened space for foreign writers/creators to live and work in Sofia. Founding member of Drama Pact - a platform for presenting contemporary, sharp and socially significant dramatic works in Bulgaria.  

Alexander loves sea kayaking as well as the freedom and independence of vast open spaces.



Details below:


Artistic participations




The Hour of Truth, performance with Vaiva Grainytė, Derida Stage, Sofia

Mladinsko Theatre Ljubljana, Slovenia

Drama Pact 2019, Sofia, Bulgaria

Transit House, Cluj, Romania

Kultursymposium Weimar

Mülheimer Theatertage 2019, Germany

Pori Outlaws Theatre Festival / Lainsuojattomat, Finland

6 Tage frei Festival in Stuttgart (with O-Team)


JTC- Journées théâtrales de Carthage, Tunis  أيام قرطاج المسرحية

Buffer Fringe Festival, Nicosia, Cyprus

Transit, Kunstverein Wagenhallen, Stuttgart, Germany (with O-Team)

Write Residenza Internazionale di Drammaturgia, Sicily, Italy

DramatikerInen Festival, Schauspiel Graz, Austria

4+1 at Schauspiel Leipzig

Ballhaus Ost tour, Berlin


14th season at Forum Theatre, Washington DC, USA, (Nov-Dec 2017)

4th Kampala International Theatre Festival, Uganda

15th International MitOst Festival, Frankfurt an der Oder-Slubice 

OFF-Biennale Budapest 2017

Focus Atelier, Cluj, Romania

Eurodram Germany at Theater/haus G7, Mannheim

Odysee Europa, Bremerhaven, Germany

L'Europe des Théâtres, Paris, France

Under the Radar Festival, New York, USA (with Rimini Protokoll)

International Theatre Festival of Kerala, India

Kolkata International Performance Art Festival, Calcutta, India

E/Ntry Festival of the Red House, Sofia, Bulgaria


SPOT Festival, Carei, Romania

Rodeo Muenchen Independent Theatre Festival of Munich, Germany (with Ferran Dordal)

41st MOT Festival Skopje, Macedonia

FAKI Festival of Alternative Theatre Expression, Zagreb, Croatia

Montag Modus and Rituals festivals, Berlin

TESZT International Festival, Timisoara, Romania

HALE 3 tour, Varna, Bulgaria


TEMPS D’IMAGES Festival, Cluj, Romania


Theatertreffen, Stueckemarkt, Berlin

New Bulgarian Drama, Shumen, Bulgaria (with Petar Tchouhov)


Theatertreffen, International Forum, Berlin

Mini Art Fest Fo, Sofia

Ideal Woman at Fabrika 126, Sofia (with Milena Stanojevic)


Unsaddest Theatre Factory Fest, Baltimore, USA

UNESCO Balkan Festival, Lovech, Bulgaria

Pocket Festival, Sofia


ACT Festival for Independent Theatre, Sofia

Varna Summer Theatre Festival, Varna, Bulgaria (with Milena Stanojevic and Svetoslav Nikolov)

Pocket Festival, Sofia

New Bulgarian Drama, Shumen, Bulgaria

Ulysses and the Shadows, National Theatre Academy, Sofia (with Edmond Scott)


Prague Quadrennial, Czech Republic

Big Sister workshop lead artist, Sfumato Theatre, Sofia


ProText, Sofia (with Vasilena Radeva)


August in Art biennial of visual arts; Varna 2008


Prague Quadrennial, Czech Republic

Small Season, Sfumato Theatre (with Ogniana Serafimova)



Films/Film Projects:




Serile Filmului Gay 2017, Cluj-Napoca, Romania

SOfia Independent Film Festival 

Semana Europea de las Lenguas, Madrid 

Indie Wise Festival Miami, USA

Shanghai PRIDE Film Festival, semifinalist

Hollywood Screenings Film Festival


Madrid International Film festival

18th Thessaloniki International LGBTQ Film Festival

Barcelona Planet Film Festival

In the Palace International Short Film Festival, Sofia

Golden Rose Film Festival, Varna, Bulgaria

Hyjnesha në Fron Festival of Kosovo

Short Film Corner of the Festival de Cannes

WoFF: World of Film International Festival , Glasgow, UK

ФЕСТИВАЛЬ РІВНОСТІ У ЗАПОРІЖЖІ (Equality festival 2016 - KIEV, Ukraine)


I Filmmaker International Film Festival, Marbella, Spain

West Nordic International Film Festival, WENIFF, Alesund, Norway

Blow-Up Art House Film Festival, Chicago, USA

Official Selection of the London Monthly Film Festival


Los Angeles Cine Fest,

Los Angeles Independent Film Festival Awards,

Miami Independent Film Festival,

Los Angeles Urban Film Festival 


Festival Centre, Moscow

Co-Productions Market of DokLeipzig Selection


TRT Documentary Days Film Festival, Istanbul

Golden Rython Documentary Film Festival, Plovdiv, Bulgaria

Balkan Documentary Centre Selection (Sofia-Skopje-Prizren)

East Doc Platform Project Selection

East European Forum Project Selection


Sofia Design Week Festival,

Balkan Documentary Centre Project Selection

Apolonia Festival, Sozopol, Bulgaria



L’ETAT”, L’espace d’un instant/Maison d'Europe et d'Orient, Paris, France, translated by Nathalie Bassand, preface: Tim Etchells, ISBN: 978-2-37572-008-0 

Film”, Sofia, 2004; Balkani Publishers Ltd. – with the Bulgarian Writers’ Guild Award for the best fiction debut book of the year; ISBN 954-8353-80-6

Language Ideas. On the Nature of the Linguistic Sign in Course in General Linguistics of Ferdinand de Saussure”, Berlin 2008, VDM Verlag; ISBN 978-3-639-08509-9

BLACK JACK in the volume “4 Festival Plays - 2012", New Bulgarian Drama, Shumen 2012. ISBN 978-954-8279-72-7

NEXT!” – in the volumeThe UnSaddest Factory’s Fourth Annual FestivalThinking Beard Press, Baltimore, 2012, ISBN 9780984053537

PLEASE, REMAIN SEATED – ET AL. a play in the volumeFOCUS ATELIER 360°, Practici In Arta Politica din Estul Europei, Reciproca, Romania 2017

Numerous publications for Reuters' Factiva service, BusinessWeek Bulgaria, the Kultura weekly, Literaturen Vestnik, Altera, the PARI, the BANKER, as well as exclusively at this site since 2012



- NATIONAL AWARD “Ivan Radoev” FOR DRAMATURGY 2019 , Pleven, Bulgaria, for the play “The Land of Anelms”

- EURODRAM Germany 2017 Award for “The State” and its translation into German by Hannes Becker

- BEST FOREIGN SHORT FILM nomination at Madrid International Theatre Festival; 2016

- SPECIAL MENTION, Marbella Filmmaker Festival, 2016


- The BEST PIECE OF JOURNALISTIC RESEARCH PRIZE for 2012 of the Association of European Journalists

- Two nominations for the NATIONAL AWARD FOR DRAMATURGY, Shumen (for the plays Black Jack, 2012 and Happy New Year (with Petar Tchouhov), 2015 )

- BULGARIAN WRITER'S GUILD AWARD - best fiction debut book of the year (Film, 2004)

- Akademie Schloss Solitude residency, 2020

-  Saari writing residence, maintained by Kone Foundation, Finland, Jan-February 2019

-  Residenza Internazionale di Drammaturgia, Mandanici, Sicily, Italy, 2018

- Focus Atelier Residency, Cluj, Romania, Sept 2017

- Residency and scholarship by Goethe Institut, Munich, and The City Council of Munich for RODEO Independent Theatre Festival Munich (April-Oct2016)  (with Ferran Dordal)  

- Residency at Pathos Theatre, Munich, Germany (Sept 2015) (with O-team)

- Scriptwriting stipend by Das Deutsch-Amerikanische Institut Heidelberg (DAI Heidelberg); 2016 (with Keith Cunningham, Maja Costa, Ron Segal et al.)

- National Film Centre, Bulgaria – script development grant, 2015 (with Angel Nakov)

- A scholarship for the International Forum, Theatertreffen Festival, Berlin 2014

- U.S./Bulgaria Exchange programme of the Drama League of New York, 2012

- Scholarship by the U.S. foundation TFAS, Prague 2005

- One-year scholarship by Charles University, Prague, 1999



I started this site to give my works the opportunity to reach their audience, without me having to do things I am uncomfortable with.

What I mean:

By observing changes in the world in 2011, I developed the feeling that knowledge and ideas should be able to circulate freely, even if small, insignificant, and bearing their flaws.

What I mean: