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Goran Bregovi? and his world-famous Wedding and Funeral Orchestra deliver the undeniably original voice of a unique land to the Sony Centre stage for one night only.
Born in Sarajevo of a Serbian mother and a Croatian father, Goran Bregovi? was a teenage rock star with his first group Bijelo Dugme (White Button) before becoming the internationally celebrated composer and musician he is today. Bregovi? describes himself simply as a “contemporary composer” as he marries the Balkan music of his heritage with a strong guitar aesthetic, fusing Roma dance tunes and traditional Eastern European choral music with rock ‘n roll. He creates music that our soul recognizes instinctively and the body greets with an irresistible urge to dance.
In its history, Bosnia has been part of many empires: Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian…. each has left its imprint and its religion – Catholic, Orthodox, Islam and Sephardic Jews, expelled from Spain, arrive in the 16th century. Sarajevo becomes the city of four religions, ‘Jerusalem of the Balkans’, and a metaphor for a peaceful cohabitation and also the horror of hate.
From Sarajevo come the greatest number of children born of mixed marriages in ex-Yugoslavia, the First World War started in Sarajevo, in the Second World War the Muslims of Sarajevo hid the Jewish families from common enemy, images of the greatest horror dating from the recent war in Bosnia come from Sarajevo…
Bregovi?’s new work Three Letters from Sarajevo is inspired by the complexities of the peoples and history of Sarajevo, the city of different religions, known as ‘Jerusalem of the Balkans’. He explores and celebrates it in this unique piece written for a solo instrument, the violin, that – played in Western, Eastern and Klezmer way – unites on the allegorical level, the three religions that are the biggest treasure and curse of Sarajevo.
Along with Goran Bregovi? and his Wedding and Funeral Orchestra, the performance at the Sony Centre will feature violin soloists Mirjana Neskovic (Serbia), Gershon Leizerson (Israel) and Zied Zouari (Tunis), as well as our local musicians: the LV String Quartet led by Rachel Pomedli, and a sextet of male voices from Toronto.
Civic Theatres Toronto is pleased to once again bring this incredibly unique global artist to the Sony Centre stage. No stranger to Toronto, Goran Bregovi? has played to enthusiastic and sold out crowds at the Sony Centre in 2011, Massey Hall earlier this year, as well as a free concert as a part of Luminato that drew thousands of raucous fans to Yonge-Dundas Square in 2009.
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