Ensemble of the folk dances and songs `Tanec` The Ensemble of the folk dances and songs `Tanec` has been created in 1949, by the Decree of the Macedonian Government, as a need for the Macedonian folk heritage to be nursed and collected, folk heritage such as dances, folk songs, instruments, the rich genuine folk outfits and also, to be presented in Macedonia and abroad trough the concerts, festivals and other cultural events.
Besides the nursing of that rich folklore, `Tanec`, during these six decades, successfully is presenting the colorful dances, songs and outfits that certainly reassemble the genuine emblem of the Macedonian culture.
With the high artistically presentation of those chorographical displays and staging, this Ensemble, during all these years, successfully is capturing the heart of the audience. Here, really worth of mentioning is the first performance and presentation of `Tanec` outside of its homeland at the International festival in Langolen England, 1950, where the Ensemble got the first price and won the `cold hearts` of the Englishmen, which is a historical event for the Ensemble and for the Macedonian culture, as well. Actually, this is a proper confirmation of the successful presentation of the Macedonian folk heritage.
The Ensemble `Tanec`, trough this career that lasts for sixty years, has been participating at over 4500 concerts, festivals and other events, gathering over eight million visitors. There is a huge number of awards, diplomas and gratitude, such as the most important highest State award `The Medal of the Contribution to Macedonia`, the other State awards, such as`11 Oktomvri`, `Kliment Ohridski`, `13 Noemvri` of the City of Skopje, etc.
On the agenda and the repertoire presented by `Tanec`, many beautiful dances and songs from all over Macedonia take place, such as `Nevestinsko`, `Teshkoto`, `Komitsko`, `Chifte`, `Kalajdzisko`, `Osogovka` and many other, and this is only a small part from the whole repertoire.
The Ensemble, recently, has also done some publishing, as there is continues preparation for the new issues, such as DVDs and Compact Audio disks with the dances and songs from its repertoire. Also, `Tanec` is purchasing genuine traditional clothes from Macedonia, in order to preserve and enrich the Macedonian folk outfits.
Vesna Ginovska- Ilkova- First Soloist
Vesna Gjinovska - Ilkova, soprano, MOB Prima Donna. Graduated from the Skopje Faculty of Music Arts in the class of Prof. Milka Eftimova. Six years later she started studying singing with Prof. Milka Eftimova. Specialized in Belgrade, Serbia, with Prof. Radmila Bakocevic.Her international performances started one year earlier, in 1993, when she performed at the outdoor stage of the "Di Marcello" Theater in Rome, Italy. Ginovska - Ilkova started her specialization in Bulgaria with Prof. Blagovesta Karnobatlova in 1995. Debuted on the MOB Opera stage as Micaela in G. Bizet "Carmen". Ginovska - Ilkova took charge of the entire soprano repertoire in MOB: Leonora ("Il trovatore"), Tosca ("Tosca"), Donna Eleonora ("La forza del destino"), Mimi ("La boheme"), Elisabeta di Valois ("Don Carlos"), Santuzza ("Cavalleria Rusticana"), Aida ("Aida"), Liu ("Turandot"), Maria ("West Side Story"), Irena ("Tzar Samuil"). The international opera career of Vesna Ginovska - Ilkova started in 1998 when she performed the role of Elisabeta di Valois ("Don Carlos") in Sofia, Bulgaria, where she also performed in "Tosca", "Il trovatore", "La forza del destino", and "Othello"; in Serbia and Montenegro in "Il trovatore", "Tosca", "Madama Butterfly"; in Slovenia in "Othello" and "Il trovatore"; she was Aida in Croatia, Turkey, Denmark; Fanciula del West in Germany; and Tosca in Italy. Her partners on the stage were prominent opera artists: Radmila Bakocevic, Kaludi Kaludov, Boris Trajanov, Marzio Giossi, Rumen Doykov, Janez Lotric, Boyko Tsvetanov, Ernesto Grisales, Stoyan Popov, Pompei Harasteanu, Lucia Pappa, etc. Vesna Ginovska - Ilkova worked with conductors such as: Bela Perenz, Loris Voltolini, Pavle Deshpalj, Zoran Juranic, Ion Iancu, Angel Shurev, etc. Awards: She is award winner at the 1996 "Hans Gabor Belvedere" festival for young singers; semifinalist at the 1998 "Boris Hristov" festival; finalist at the 2000 "Boris Hristov" festival (the award was performance in the role of Elisabet di Valois ("Don Carlos" in Sofia, Bulgaria); awarded with the 2002 "13 Noemvri" Award of the City of Skopje. Repertoire: Mimi ("La Boheme"), Leonora ("Il trovatore"), Donna Leonora ("La forza del destino"), Aida ("Aida"), Desdemona ("Othello"), Tosca ("Tosca"), Santuzza (("Cavalleria Rusticana"), Cio-Cio San ("Madam Butterfly"), Liu ("Turandot"), Gioconda ("La Gioconda"), etc.
Boris TRAJANOV, Baritone
The Macedonian baritone was born in Slovenia. He studied voice with his father, as well as with Biserka Cvejic and Pier Miranda Ferraro in Milano. He is a prize winner of several international vocal competitions.
He made his debut at the Macedonian National Opera. From 1991 until 1995 he was a member of the Karlsruhe State Opera (Germany). Since 1995 he is working freelance with contracts at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, at the Teatro Comunale di Bologna (2004: Andrea Chenier), Teatro Regio di Parma (2003: Scarpia in Raina Kabaiwanskas last performance as Tosca), in Triest (Les Contes d'Hoffmann and Andrea Chenier), Palermo (2007: Tosca), Teatro dell?Opera di Roma (2004: Fidelio and Tosca on a tour to Moscow), at the Caracalla in Rome (2005: Carmen), in Messina (2007 debut in the role of Jack Rance / Fanciulla del West), Bari (2008: Das Rheingold), at the Hamburg State Opera (2002: Otello), the Opera Frankfurt (2003/04: Tosca), the Opera Bonn (Pique Dame), the Opera Cologne (Merlin in Le Roi Artus, Madama Butterfly...), the Opera Essen (2006 and 2008: Tosca), the Deutsche Oper am Rhein (Rigoletto), at the Ludwigsburg Festival (2003: Attila), the Volksoper Wien, the Opernhaus Graz (2004/05: Tosca, Fidelio), the Theater St. Gallen (2003: Nabucco), the Opera Oslo (Un ballo in maschera), the Scottish National Opera Glasgow, in Rotterdam, Capetown, Sao Paolo (Carmen), at the Opera Pacific (2003: Il Trovatore), at the New Israeli Opera Tel Aviv (2005: Fidelio), Opera de Monte-Carlo (2006: Tosca), Opera de Limoges (2007: Carmen) and at the Opera de Marseille (2007: Madama Butterfly).
In 2005 Boris Trajanov was nominated "UNESCO artist for peace". In 2007 and 2008 he participates in opera productions in Paris and New York, organised by the UNESCO.
SYNTHESIS combines the roots of Macedonian folk music heritage with contemporary arrangements, using full range of original Macedonian instruments, like kaval, gaida, zurla, tapan, tarabuka and tambura. Powerful and explosive, SYNTHESIS is the most exported Macedonian world music project. The band was established in 1995 for the purpose of carrying out an in-depth pursuit of the outstanding folk music treasures of Macedonia. The name "Synthesis" was chosen to express the concept of the group, which is to combine traditional sounds with contemporary arrangements to create a musical synthesis. Digging deeply into the roots of Macedonian folk heritage, with a serious concern for the basics of traditional compositions, the group has received high praise for breathing new life in this milieu.
The melancholic voyages of Synthesis, with the full emotional power of the heritage and the typical complexity of Macedonian rhythms should not be missed by any Balkan music fan. Macedonia has finally uncovered a contemporary world music project! The group uses the full range of original Macedonian instruments: kaval, gaida, zurla, tapan, tarabuka and tambura. The line-up consists of three young lady singers, skillfully handling the local vocal tradition, of a keyboard player, two percussionists, tambura player and, of course, kaval, gaida or zurla on the front. Special mention has to be made here of the fact that while the majority of the traditional groups in Macedonia are amateurs, this band is made up of professional musicians.
The band has released 5 CDs and one DVD; it features the recorded concert held in Skopje together with the Macedonian Philharmonic on the occasion of the tenth jubilee of the band's existence and with the special appearance of guest performers, the band's musical associates. Two of the band's CDs were re-released by the Spanish publishing House Resistance.
In recognition of the great contribution Synthesis has made for the affirmation of Macedonian music and culture through its numerous concerts all over the world (Japan, Israel, the United States, Italy, France, and many others), in 2006 the Macedonian Chamber of Commerce pronounced the band its Honorary Ambassador of Macedonian Culture.
Synthesis carries on with the treatment of old, forgotten, and sometimes almost never heard songs, which are part of the rich Macedonian musical heritage, which, like Macedonian culture, has a long and enduring tradition.
Esma, a Gipsy from the city of Skopje, as she calls herself, raised by the late Stevo Teodosievski, revolving the world and broadening the acquaintance of Macedonia and Skopje, last year celebrated 40 years undeniably prolific work. According her achieved acknowledges and successes, she is, indeed the most successful performer of all times. Further more, going deeper into her intimate, private life we become aware that she is our second Mother Teresa.
Namely, Esma not having the luck of being a natural mother, she brought up 5 children in her own house, and other 47 are proud the say that Esma is their mother and father. Nowadays, each year, giving concerts around the world, which have never been noticeable in our media; in complete anonymity she raises money for her armaments, educating them, above all providing them blissful and normal life. Never have knocked on state institutional doors, years from now, Esma, lives and works like a benevolent institution being for much replacement for the society. Even her monograph and her web page are sponsored by her own means and again it is not for sale but only given away as a present.
Esma lives in democracy, accepting the trade market even in the culture and being a great worker and quality, nothing ever is unconquerable. It is beyond doubts, that she is completely civil and intellectually orientated person, suffering a great soreness in her soul not only because of her husband’s earlier departure from this world but also because living in a society that has a huge trouble understanding magnanimities like her and finding a way to reimburse at least with a crumb of love. Perhaps it is understandable why Esma held her hands upon Vasil Tupurkovski when he stated, “We are all Macedonia”!, finding a bit of hope that after all something is going to be changed.
Esma's album "Queen of the Gypsies" has been selected in the group of the best 20 albums by the "World Music" selection
In the world over 15.000 concerts held, well above 2000 concerts given as humanitarian aid,
586 works on records, cassettes and CD’s of which 2 are palatine, 8 golden and 8 silver records,
short documentary film ”Sing Macedonia” (1968) eight hour video material recorded for MTV,
"20 November" award together with Stevo Teodosievski,
Golden and Silver Medallion from Josip Broz Tito for accomplishments in the culture in the SFRJ and in the world
Queen of Gipsy music in the whole world (1976),
UNICEF award (Belgrade, Yugoslavia)
"13 November" award
Primadonna of the European Singing 1995 (the only one as a folklore singer)
more than 2000 gratitude’s for humanitarian activities,
Golden Medallion “Millennium Singer” in Moscow (among other 83 countries),
sings on 20 languages,
raised and educated 47 children which are now prominent citizens and artists in the country and abroad,
supported by Gypsy World Organisation, Macedonian and World LIONS Organisation, fifty non-governmental humanitarian institutions in the field of culture, art, stage and feminine organisations in Macedonia and the Balkan countries supporting the peace, humanity tolerance and interethnic relations ignorant to the national, ethnical, and religious differences, has nominated Esma one of the candidates for the
Nobel Prize for Peace for year 2002
Macedonian pianist Simon Trpceski has established himself as one of the most remarkable young musicians to have emerged in recent years, performing with many of the world’s greatest orchestras and delighting audiences worldwide.
Simon works regularly with a list of conductors that includes Zinman, Andrew Davis, Maazel, Jurowski, Tortelier, Pappano, Ashkenazy, Dutoit, Alsop, Dudamel, Petrenko and Noseda. Hehas performed extensively in the United Kingdom, including regular appearances with the London Symphony, Philharmonia Orchestra, London Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony and the Halle Orchestra. Other European engagements have included performances with many of the major orchestras, including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Russian National Orchestra, Rotterdam Philharmonic, DSO Berlin, Bolshoi, Danish National Symphony Orchestra, NDR Hamburg, Strasbourg Philharmonic, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Royal Flanders Philharmonic and the St. Petersburg Philharmonic.
In North America, he performs regularly with many of the major orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Chicago Symphony, Pittsburgh and the orchestras of Los Angeles, San Francisco, Baltimore, Pittsburgh and Toronto, to name but a few. In Asia and Australia, Simon has performed with the New Japan Philharmonic, Hong Kong Philharmonic, Seoul Philharmonic, Sydney and Melbourne symphony orchestras and on tour with the New Zealand Symphony.
In 2009/2010, Simon will tour Europe with the Philharmonia Orchestra and Lorin Maazel, and also with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic under Jaap van Zweden. He will also perform with the Orchestre National de France, London Symphony Orchestra, Halle Orchestra, Strasbourg Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Houston Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony and National Arts Centre Orchestra, as well as making his debut with the Cleveland Orchestra at the Blossom Music Festival, at the Verbier Festival, Choregies d'Orange and returning to the Aspen Music Festival. He begins a Rachmaninov piano concerto cycle with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, and continues the same with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.
Simonis a superb recitalist, andhas given solo performances in cities including New York, London, Tokyo, Paris, Munich, Prague, Milan, Hamburg, Bilbao, Dublin, Seattle, Toronto, San Francisco, Portland, Atlanta and Vancouver, on the main stage of the Concertgebouw, as well asat the United Nations headquarters on the occasion of the closing of the sixty-second session of the U.N. General Assembly, at the invitation of the session’s President, H.E. Srgjan Kerim.
Simon has received much praise for his EMI recital recordings. The first, featuring works by Tchaikovsky, Scriabin, Stravinsky and Prokofiev, received both the Editor’s Choice and Debut Album Awards at the Gramophone Awards; the second was an all-Rachmaninov disc that received unanimous praise from critics; the third an all-Chopin disc which was equally applauded, and in 2008, he released an all-Debussy disc which once again gathered widespread critical acclaim. The Independent on Sunday called it “subtle, clever, imaginative pianism of the very highest quality.”
Born in the Republic of Macedonia in 1979, Simon Trpceski has won prizes in international piano competitions in the U.K. (London International Piano Competition 2000), Italy and the Czech Republic. From 2001 to 2003, he was a member of the BBC New Generation Scheme, and in May 2003, he was awarded the Young Artist Award by the Royal Philharmonic Society. A 2002 graduate from the Faculty of Music of the University of St. Cyril and St. Methodius in Skopje, where he studied with Professor Boris Romanov, Simon currently teaches as a faculty member at his alma mater.
Tose Proeski (in memoriam)
The talented boy from Krusevo - Tose Proeski, one of the best Macedonian vocalists ever, was born on 25 January 1981 in Prilep. He is currently a student at final year of the Skopje Music Academy, at the solo singing department.
He had his first more significant public appearance at the teenage festival "Melfest" in 1996. And 1997 in Prilep, when he was awarded first prize twice in a row. His vocal abilities were amazing and soon, he was welcomed by the wider audience very enthusiastically.
He performed the song “Pusti me"(“Let me go ") at the festival "Makfest" in Stip 1997.
A year later, he participated at the Skopje Festival (the national contest for "Euro song" entry), with the song “Ostani do Kraj" ["Stay 'Till the End"].
That summer, he took part in the festival “Ohridski Trubaduri" in Ohrid and started working with the well known composer Grigor Koprov. What turned out to be a very successful cooperation resulted in a great number of hits, and the first two were “Usni na Usni" ["Lips on Lips"] - (second prize of the jury), and "Sonce vo Tvoite Rusi Kosi" ["The Sun in Your Golden Hair"] (first prize at Eurofest). With these two songs Tose made a breakthrough on a national level showing that he would have a serious place on the Macedonian music scene. His debut album "Nekade vo Nokta" ["Somewhere in the Night"], with 11 beautiful songs, was released on 15th May, a day after he performed the song "Tvoite Baknezi na Moite Beli Kosuli" ["Your Kisses on my White Shirt"] at the Skopje festival1999. He won the first prize by the audience and this song was topping the charts for months. The most popular of them were "Eh, da sum Zlato" ["I Wish I Were Gold"], "Ruski Rulet" ["Russian Rullet"], as well as the above mentioned "Pusti Me" ["Let Me Go"], "Ostani do Kraj" ["Stay 'Till the End"], "Usni na Usni" ["Lips on Lips"], "Sonce vo Tvojte Rusi Kosi" ["The Sun in Your Golden Hair"]... That summer Tose had his first solo concert in Skopje which, in spite of the rain, was unforgettable for all the fans. In the fall of 1999,. he sang "Morska zvezdo" [" Starfish"] at "Makfest" - Stip and won the second prize of the jury. In the beginning of 2000, at the prestigious event "12 Velicestveni" ("12 Magnificent") he won all the major awards for the album "Nekade vo Nokta" ["Somewhere in the Night"], including best male vocalist, concert of the year, best video ... Tose took part in Skopje festival 2000, with the song "Solzi Pravat Zlaten Prsten" ["Golden Ring made of Tears"] but, even though he won the majority of votes by the tele-voting system, he came third and didn't represent Macedonia at the Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm that year. In that period he started recording the tracks for his second album "Sinot Bozji" ["The Son of God"], which was promoted by the end of June 2000. The album brought some great hits, like "Nemir"("Restless") (duet with Karolina Goceva), "Vo Kosi da ti Spijam" [" Sleeping in Your Hair"], "Izlazi me Uste Ednas" ["Lie to Me One More Time"], as well as "Iluzija" ["Illusion"] (Grand Prix at the festival "Slavjanski Bazar" in Vitebsk ) and "Tajno Moja" ["My Secret"] (second prize at the festival "Suncane Skale" in Herceg Novi, Monte Negro). The Belgrade record company BK Sound purchased the rights to release this album edition on their market, which in a flash became one of the best-selling projects in Yugoslavia. As a student of the Music Academy Tose took part in the operetta "Despina and Mister Doks" by the end of 2000 and the beginning of 2001. The second prize at the Podgorica Festival 2001 , for the duet with Karolina Goceva, "Nemir" ["Restless"] followed. At the prestigious event "Oskar Popularnosti" ("Oscar of Popularity") he was awarded as the most successful vocalist from the ex-YU republics in the year 2000. Tose Proeski performed a track from his debut album called "Sonce vo Tvojte Rusi Kosi" ["The Sun in Your Golden Hair"] at the festival "Suncane Skale" 2001, when he won the second prize of the jury. But, according to the audience ,the real winner was Tose! By selling out five concerts in a row at the Universal Hall in Skopje in March 2001, he confirmed his immense popularity on home ground. In the beginning of October 2001 Tose Proeski held a concert at the sold-out "Sava Centar" in Belgrade – the largest concert hall in Yugoslavia. Immediately after this, he set off for an Australian tour, together with several Macedonian music artists. The encounter with the manager Ljiljana Petrovic changes the stream of Tose Proeski's career. He started working on the third album "Ako me poglednes vo oci" ["If You Look Into My Eyes"] in a music studio in Athens, Greece. The album was recorded in two versions , Macedonian and Serbian. The Macedonian version of the album, written by the composer Phoebus, the lyricist Marina Tucakovic and the arranger Manolis Vlachos, was released by the end of October 2002, preceded by a grand promotion.
Besides the title song, the greatest hits on this album are : the ballad "Nemas ni blagodaram" ("You didn't even thank me"), "Magic" (duet with the famous Esma ), "Soba za taga "("Room for sorrow"), Ledena ("A Girl Like Ice"),"Limenka" ("A Can")…
On 26th November 2002, with a spectacular concert at Skopje Fair Site in front of an audience of 7 000 , Tose launched his 25-day Macedonian tour. The audience throughout the country reacted euphorically to his appearance. His third album was released for the Serbian market by BK Sound, and had its promotion in Bosnia, Republika Srpska, Monte Negro, as well as Bulgaria (under the label of Bulgarian Music Company BMK). Tose Proeski won at "Beovizija" in Belgrade in April 2003, with "Cija si" ["Who Do You Belong To"], a song which became a huge hit in Macedonia and the other ex-YU republics. To improve his singing , Tose, took classes in New York from maestro William Riley, who was also coach to famous maestro Luciano Pavarotti. Every December Tose makes Humanitarian concerts in Universal Hall in Skopje and that is why in 2003 he was awarded Mother Theresa humanitarian award. He is also guest on many Humanitarian concerts all over world. In 2003 he became a Regional UNICEF Ambassador. In April 2004 he realized his 4-th album “Den za nas” (A day for us). On 29th of June Tose has a spectacular concert on City Stadium in Skopje in front of audience of 20 000 – the best ever concert in Macedonia. On the concert he gets an award from BK- TV for “Best sold album in Serbia & Monte Negro “for his last album. He’s 4-th album is realized also in Serbia & Monte Negro, preceded by a grand promotion in Belgrade. In July Tose sign contract with Dallas records and his 4-th album is realized in Slovenia and Croatia, he also made a duet with Slovenian music star Anja Rupel – Krajnje vrijeme.
In September Tose became national UNICEF Ambassador – the youngest one in the world. In October Tose was on a 12 day tour in Australia, there he has fantastic concerts in front of audience of 10 000. In November Tose Proeski realized his first DVD with video material from his concert in Skopje in June On 2nd of December Tose Proeski and his guest Anja Rupel, Toni Cetinski, Leontina, Esma and Synthesis had a great Humanitarian concert in Skopje in front of audience of 3 000 . On the concert Tose Proeski promote his new song for UNICEF “ This world” In july 2005 Tose released his 5-th Album “ Po tebe” in Macedonia, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia & Monte Negro, Bosnia & Hercegovina in 170 000 copies. Po Tebe" is currently the #1 selling album in Croatia and Slovenia. In just 20 days following the press release in Macedonia it sold more then 20 000 copies. At the moment, together with the manager Ljiljana Petrovic, Tose Proeski is working on his world promotion. He signed contract in London for his world carrier. His newest song “Srce nije kamen” is on top position on official Croatian top list. Besides world carrier Tose is preparing new album with 15 traditional Macedonian songs. Traditional song and opera singing are Tose’s biggest love. This spring Tose will have a big tour in Croatia, Serbia and Monte Negro, Slovenia, Macedonia, Bosnia&Hercegovina. All concerts will be with big symphonies orchestra.
2003 AWARDS: -Zlatna Buba Mara - singer of the year 2002, concert of the year 2002; -12 Velicestveni - singer of the year 2002, concert of the year 2002, music video of the year 2002, award from the audience (SMS voting); -Lice na godinata "Vecer" - singer of the year 2002; -13-ka za Najdobrite - most popular singer in 2002, hit of the year 2002, best album of the year 2002; -Banja Luka 2003 Festival (Republika Srpska) - second prize of the jury; -Beovizija (Belgrade, Serbia & Montenegro) - first prize of the jury, first prize of the audience; -Victor & Victoria (Novi Sad, Serbia & Montenegro) - most popular singer from Macedonia; -Oskar Popularnosti 2003 - Banja Luka - most popular pop-singer in Republika Srpska in the year 2002; -Vrsac 2003 - most successful singer from the ex-YU republics in the year 2002.
2004 AWARDS: -15 January 2004- “Cija si”- awarded as the best song of the year 2003 - 22 January 2004 – he won the oscar for the most popular performer on the Balkans - 12 March 2004- he won the singer of the year award at “12 Velicenstveni” - February 2004- he won the singer of the year award at “ Zlatna Buba Mara”
2005 3 December – best selling album in Serbia and Monte Negro/ best singer of the year (Award from National TV RTS) 2006 January – best singer from ‘’ Vardar to Triglav’’ ( Ex Yugoslavia) Award from Palma TV – Belgrade 2006 February- best singer and best video clip award at “ Zlatna Buba Mara”
SPECIAL HONOURS In 2003 he was awarded Mother Theresa humanitarian award In 2003 he became a Regional UNICEF Ambassador In 2004 he became a Nacional UNICEF Ambassador
Nekade vo nokta ["Somewhere in the Night"] (Avalon Production, 1999.) Sinot Bozji ["The Son of God"] (Avalon Production, 2000.) Ako me poglednes vo oci ["If You Look into My Eyes"] (Final Cut Production, 2002.) Den za na [“A Day for US”] ( Final Cut Production 2004) Po tebe ( Award 2005)
Vlatko Stefanovski was born in 1957 in Prilep. Macedonia in a theatrical fam-ily. He started playing guitar at the age of 13. In his late teens he formed the group LEB I SOL which became one of the most important names in the mu-sic scene of former Yugoslavia. The band played a particular style of fusion music, a blend of Macedonian traditional irregular rhythms and contemporary rock. LEB I SOL released 14 albums and toured around the world.
Recently Stefanovski has developed a very successful solo career. Already his first solo release ‘Cowboys and Indians’ (1994) showcased his various interests, from deep ethno roots to ambiental moods and classic blues. After the benefit project ‘Sarajevo’ (1996) for the UNICEF Fund for Children in Need he formed his electric trio and released the first Vlatko Stefanovski Trio CD in 1998. Among other releases Stefanovski recorded ‘Krushevo’ (1998) with well known guitarist Miroslav Tadic and made the music for the Turkish film ‘Journey to the sun’ directed by Yesim Ustaoglu which won two awards at the Berlin film festival in 1999.
In the last several years he has played and recorded all around the world with many top artists like Bojan Z., Theodosii Spassov, Gibonni, `Manu Katche, Toni Levin and many others. His recent work also includes music for films, theatre and ballet. His latest release ‘Thunder from the Blue Sky’ is a magnifi-cent blues record with guitar legend Jan Akkerman (Focus) contributing his part and perfectly complementing the almost dizzying playing of the 6-string virtuoso from Macedonia. The extensive joint tour of the two exceptional gui-tarists through Southeast Europe in summer and autumn 2008 was an absolute triumph.
Stefanovski is well known for his incredible guitar technique. He creates rich soundscapes with imagination, fluency and ease. His Vlatko Stefanovski Trio has recently played in Macedonia, in the USA, Canada, UK, Austria, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Croatia, Greece, Slovenia, Bosnia i Hercegovina, Serbia, Bulgaria etc. In 2007 Stefanovski was honoured a doctorate honoris causa in the fields of art at the University St. Kiril and Metodij / Skopje. He lives in Skopje/Macedonia with his family and owns a well-equiped project studio named ‘Esoteria Sound Studio’
KALIOPI-ARTIST, SINGER, COMPOSER, POET, HUMANIST
Kaliopi, the biggest Macedonian pop music star and one of the biggest music stars on the Balkans. She is the best female vocale in Macedonia and one of the best vocales in the countries of ex-Yugoslavia. Macedonian and Balkan’s pop diva.
She started her career when she was just 9 with winning the first prize at the children’s music festival “Zlatno Slavejce” (Golden Nightingale). Kaliopi has her first big success and popularity in the countries of ex-Yugoslavia as a member of a band “Kaliopi”. In 1985, she participated with the band at the festival “Opatija” and she got the prize for the best interpretation for the song “Leo”, awarded by the journalists of Yugoslavia. The bend published its debut album in 1986 for RTV Ljubljana (radio and TV broadcast) named as "Kaliopi". That year the band participated in the Split Festival and it was awarded with the prize for the best debut performer for the song “Da More Zna” (If Sea Knows), which was also proclamed to be the most listened and played song on the radio stations. The second album of this band “Rogeni” (Born), issued two years later, recorded in Zagreb reached enormous sucess, especcialy with the hit-song “Bato” (Brother) that is being one of the biggest hits in the ex-Yugoslavia even today. Other hit-songs from the band “Kaliopi” are: “Kofer Ljubavi” (Love Case), “Da More Zna” (If Sea Knows), “Ostani u Meni” (Stay With Me), “Nebo Mi Sja” (The Sky Shines For Me), “Bolero Lora”,...
Many perormances, festivals, show-programs for TV Zagreb, TV Belgrad, TV Saraevo, TV Titovgrad followed after that, as well as a big concert tour throughouth all of Soviet Union. In the time of her biggest popularity, Kaliopi moved in Switzerland, what lead to band breaking up and 10 years of absence from the music stage, but still she remained present in the electronic media in Macedonia and ex-Yugoslavia with her recorded audio and video materials.
Kaliopi’s grand comeback, but this time as a solo interpreter, was announced with her participation in the Skopje Festival in 1996 when she won the Grandprix of the Festival. In 1999 she definitely came back in Macedonia presenting her new album “Oboi Me” (Color me) recorded in Bazel, Switzerland. This album initiated real euphoria in Macedonia and great feedback with Macedonian audience with record issues sold. In 2000 Kaliopi found her own production company – Kaliopi Music Production, that deals only with projects connected to Kaliopi’s work. At the beggining of 2001 the new solo album was printed out and Kaliopi was a complete author of the music and texts. From 1999 till nowadays Kaliopi has issued 8 albums, 5 of them as a complete author and each of them has been awarded as a best album in the past year in Macedonia.
Working on her own albums as well as on other interpreters albums (both domestic and foreign) Kaliopi became one of the leading composers and text writers. Beside the pop music, she enjoys working on several other art projects. During 2004 she composed music for two theatrical performances and played the leading female role in the first Macedonian musical “Cija si” (Whose Woman Are You), in 2005 she composed the music for the contemporary ballet “Jas, Isidora” (Me, Isadora), which was printed out as a CD compilation, and in 2007 she composed the music for the first macedonian feature-poetry movie "Elegija za tebe" (Elegy for you).
If one rates, according to the Kaliopi’s achievements – 9 pop albums, ballet album, "Best Of" compilation, DVD of her jubilee concert "30 years of presence on the music stage", over 100 concerts in Macedonia and around, 3 big concert tours, 28 video editions for her biggest hits, 3 documentaries and 6 video records of her biggest concerts, noumerous performances and show programs, music for movie, theatre and contemporary ballet, and many, many more. And all of this within Macedonian borders, than one can surely say that Kaliopi set high standards and imprinted an everlasting seal into the Macedonian and Balkan music and art in general and she become Macedonian and Balkan's pop-diva.
During her long-lasting and fruitful career, apart from her specific voice colour, the outstanding interpreting power as well as the completion of many hit songs, Kaliopi shows herself off with her unselfish cooperation with other music names and with her work as a humanitarian, but also with her efforts for making the musical authors rights better and at the same time their protection in Macedonia.
She was posted as a Honorary Ambassador of UNHCR, Honorary Ambassador of the Macedonian Economy throughout the World, and among her countless awards and recognitions is the statue of “Mother Tereza”.
Last year, Kaliopi published the album "Oblivion" with world famous guitar and lute player Edin Karamazov, intended for the World Music Market. Together with world famous stars Sting, Renee Fleming and Andreas Scholl, Kaliopi is one of the specials guest at Edin Karamazov's latest album "The Lute is a song", published by DECCA discography.
Currently, Kaliopi released her new pop album "Poraka" (Message), which except in Macedonia will be published in the region
Contact address: Economic Chamber of Macedonia st. Dimitrie Chupovski, 13 1000 Skopje