Traditional Croatia in the heart of North America.
The Tamburitza Orchestra of the Croatian Radio-Television (HRT) and the “Sveti Juraj” singing group of the Croatian Navy will perform in Canada and the United States during the North American tour “Christmas is Here” from 26 November to 7 December, reports Dalmacija News on November 26, 2015.
The most beautiful part of a year is the Christmas holiday season. This year’s gift to Croats living in the United States and Canada will be performances by HRT Tamburitza Orchestra, conducted by maestro Siniša Leopold, “Sveti Juraj” singing group of the Croatian Navy, and singers Krunoslav Kićo Slabinac, Sandra Bagarić and Đani Stipaničev. This will be the first time ever that some of the great performance halls of the North American continent will hear the sound of traditional Croatian Christmas songs.
The host of the concerts will be Tatjana Cameron – Tajči, a well-known Croatian singer who has made a successful musical career in America as well, not only as a singer but also as an author of numerous songs. In addition to traditional Croatian songs, many of the well-known American Christmas songs will be performed in specially prepared musical arrangements.
“After several years of work to promote Croatian culture on this continent, we have decided to present on the same stage the very best of the traditional music Croatia has to offer: the tamburitza music and folk songs. There was no doubt whom we should ask to come, so we have patiently negotiated for three years in order to organize a tour by HRT Tamburitza Orchestra and the “Sveri Juraj” singing group. Once again, we will prove that music is the best form of cultural diplomacy and the best way of presenting Croatian cultural heritage”, Dragan Čačinović, the tour organizer, said.
“Sveti Juraj” singing group of the Croatian Navy has been a proud promoter of Dalmatian songs all over the world for many years. Marko Bralić, head of the singing group, said that the applause they receive at the end of their every concert is the best award they could ever get. “We have performed in China, Germany, Italy, France and in many other places, but this tour is something special. We are proud that we are going to perform in North America and create special holiday atmosphere for all those who celebrate Christmas. On the eve of the New York concert, we will perform at the mass in the Croatian Catholic Mission on Manhattan, where we will meet with the local Croats, and that makes us particularly proud”, said Bralić.
Siniša Leopold, a renowned musician who has visited the United States and Canada many times, is equally excited. For many years, the maestro has been a mentor to many of the tamburitza ensembles in North America. “Language and music are the soul of a nation, and tamburitza, recognized as an authentic Croatian instrument, has a special role in preserving our identity on this continent. Many young people belonging to the second, third or even fourth generation, and who barely speak Croatian language, like the sound of tamburitza which links them with their Croatian roots. That is why this tour is a challenge that I await with joy and a lot of emotions”, Leopold said.