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Despite being a member of the EU since 2007, Bulgaria is still in the queue for full membership of the EU’s passport-free Schengen Area, with a decision expected sometime in the next year. As it stands, Bulgaria is something of an associate member of the European live circuit – reasonably frequently visited but certainly not overrun.
The country’s main arena is the Arena Sofia in the capital,a 12,373-capacity venue with options for up to 17,000, it was opened in 2011 and ranks as the fourth biggest in the Balkans. Named Arena Armeec until its naming deal expired last year,the arena is the main stop for arena-sized acts in Bulgaria and also scales for boxing, tennis, and basketball, among other sports.
Hollywood Vampires, Pantera, and Eros Ramazzotti have visited this year, with Louis Tomlinson expected in September; Iron Maiden, Helloween, Godsmack, Deep Purple, and André Rieu all came through after the reopening in May 2022.
Hollywood Vampires, Pantera, and Eros Ramazzotti have visited this year, with Louis Tomlinson expected in September; Iron Maiden, Helloween, Godsmack, Deep Purple, and André Rieu all came through after the reopening in May 2022. It is not to be confused with another Arena Sofia up the road –this one an outdoor venue in Borisova Gradina Park.
In the second city of Plovdiv, the Kolodruma velodrome occasionally pivots to concerts, with Bryan Adams the last major act to visit in 2019. The 1960s Palace of Culture and Sports in Varna is a multifunctional complex for cultural andsporting events, with a 6,000-capacity main hall. In a busy calendar full of local attractions, Michael Flatley’sLord ofthe Dance came by in May, and Il Volo are due in September.