Croatian Concert Organizers Urge the Ministry of Culture to Recognize Rock Music

Daniela Rogulj

Croatian concert organizers seek to have rock music recognized as a public need, with hopes for better cooperation with the Ministry of Culture.

‘Rock music has been on the Croatian scene already for 50 years, and we cannot allow what happened in Slovenia, who lost their entire rock scene, happen to us,” said Dražen Goreta from Boogaloo, reports Jutarnji List.


Association Promo on Friday at a press conference titled, “The situation of rock music in the cultural politics of Croatia” called for the responsibility to recognize rock as a public need in culture, and expressed their hopes that the Ministry of Culture will have better cooperation, recognizing rock as an art and thus finally joining the rest of the world.


Members of the association presented a vision on the position of rock music in Croatia and warned of years of neglect of this type of culture. They expressed the hope that the new Ministry of Culture will find a common warning that there are many unresolved problems in this sector.


Organizer of INmusic festival Zoran Marić said that Promo, for two years now, has actively advocated change in attitudes towards rock music, and that their efforts have made some progress. It is believed that this music, for decades, has been ignored to be recognized as art – although the public needs rock in their culture.


“In the light of the world’s highest recognition (Nobel Prize for Literature) by one rock author, Bob Dylan, who won for their creativity, we must stress that Croatia is still struggling for recognition of rock as an art form,” said Maric.


Marić continued by saying that the ministry should support the rock scene, using their example for local communities with the initiative for young people ‘move from the street’. He said it was necessary to support the promotion of cultural values ​​of quality contemporary original music and preserve the existing rock scene that is sadly becoming smaller.


“Members of the ‘sub-councils for rock music’ for assessing the quality of programs Ilko Čulić, Aleksandar Dragas, and others met with no understanding of the former minister of culture, who conducted the arbitrariness, and the program is dependent on his grace, not on the quality of the program,” said Marić.


“Two million kuna annual budget for the rock scene was halved to one million which has even deeper pushed the Croatian rock scene to the margins. For comparison, Ljubljana club Kino Siška receives one million euros per year from the city,” said Aleksandar Dragas, a music critic.


As an example, he said that the ministry did not even provide funds for The Bambi Molesters to fuel their van for the tour with big rock band R.E.M. He added that they had already won the funds, but it is necessary to fight for the name, because rock is classified as an “innovative form” and not recognized as music. The music consists only of classics and jazz, he said, adding that the ZAMP and Croatian Composers’ Society are the only ones with money set aside for young artists.


Dražen Goreta from Tvornica Kulture pointed out that rock has been on the Croatian music scene for 50 years, and we cannot let happen to us what happened in Slovenia, who lost the entire rock scene and was unable to withstand foreign competition.


Association Promo gathers organizers of concerts with quality contemporary original music in Croatia, and in front of this initiative are the organizers INmusic festival, SuperUho festival, Vintage Industrial Bar, Tvornica kulture, Klub Zagreb, Močvara, Žedno uho, Pozitivan ritam, Klub Palach, Distune Promotion, Seasplash festival, Multikultura, Outlook festival, Dimensions festival, Attack, and Terraneo Festival.


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