Klapa Groups from Lastovo Perform in Former Military Tunnel

Lauren Simmonds

Lastovo in southern Dalmatia is one of the closest things to heaven on earth as one can get. This still underrated little island tends to keep itself to itself despite its relatively close proximity to Dubrovnik, but it has a lot to be boasting about.

Klapa music is by far one of the most characteristic parts, or sounds, rather, of Dalmatia. This type of traditional capella singing is one of Dalmatia’s top trademarks and no visit to the coast is complete without hearing and witnessing a klapa performance. 

Translating to ”group of friends”, there are often several klapa music bands per location, even in small villages. This type of singing can trace its roots back to church singing, and the most common subjects of the songs are love, the Adriatic, drinking wine and a love for Croatia, or sometimes more specifically the town from which the group originates.

As Morski writes on the 29th of May, 2019, the female klapa group ”Ladesta” and the male klapa group ”Fumari” held a concert in no less than a very atmospheric former military tunnel located in Kremena bay on the islet of Prežba, an uninhabited place located just northwest of Lastovo, under the organisation of the only hotel complex on the whole of Lastovo, hotel Solitudo.

Guests of the island, as well as the local population, enjoyed and sang along with the klapa music in the unique ambience of this old Lastovo military tunnel. The ambience and the natural acoustics of this newly-discovered “stage” helped to well and truly fill the entire tunnel with the sound of the klapa singing, as well as the singing of the birds and the soft lapping of the calm Adriatic sea, leaving the audience more than satisfied with this rather unique experience.

The audience, which was made up of both visitors to Lastovo and locals didn’t hide their obvious enthusiasm, and every new performance from “Fumari” and “Ladesta” was met with a strong and appreciative round of applause.

”The greatest wealth of tourism are people, then history and culture, and there’s a lot on Lastovo. The concept we care about is the concept of ethical tourism, which implies respect for natural, cultural and historical values ​​and above all, respect for the local community,” stated the hotel manager of Lastovo’s Solitudo, Željko Kurta.

With small but certain steps, beautiful Lastovo in southern Dalmatia is managing to balance stubbornly guarding its sheer beauty, rich traditions, and its impressive culture and history while still opening up its green heart to visitors.

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