Thursday, February 15, 2007

The Old Croatian Soap Opera

When a brief article in Kurir at the end of January mentioned plans for BN Televizija from Bijeljina to organise a large-scale concert of Serbian and Bosnian showbusiness folk singers in Zagreb's basketball stadium in late February or early March, the Gazette resolved to believe it when it saw it. (Which, given the Gazette's current on-location status, can be taken quite literally.)

To mangle an English proverb, great showbusiness-ethnopolitical oaks have a habit of growing from little acorns in Kurir; or, at least, that's how we ended up with such a fuss over Severina's 'Moja štikla'.

Now that there are half a dozen posters between my flat and the station for a BN Televizija Folk revija to be held at the Zagrebački velesajam (Zagreb's sprawling trade-fair complex) on 7 March, involving Šerif Konjević, Halid Muslimović, Viki Miljković, Mina Kostić, Goga Sekulić and 8-10 other singers (although neither of Bijeljina's own two contributions to the narodna scene, Lepa Brena or Seka Aleksić), it looks as if Zagreb may be set for the highest-profile pop-folk event since Željko Joksimović played the Dom sportova in November 2004, bucking the usual trend of folk performers appearing in out-of-town nightclubs. (The event's even being trailed on a Slovenian listings site; and yes, Joksimović counted as a folk singer from this end.)

Except, according to the Bosnian edition of Svet, or rather Svijet, there's (not very detailed) word of opposition from the Croatian Musicians' Union (HGU), an organisation once renowned - under its former president - for opposition to Serbian performers (most of all Djordje Balašević) appearing in Croatia. If that's the case, though, the Bosnian media knows more about it than their Croatian counterparts.

There is, in the meantime, news from Večernji list that another Serbian pop-folk singer, Ana 'Romale, romali' Nikolić, has been lined up for a leading role in a new Croatian soap opera, 'Strast koja ubija' (Deadly passion).

(The old Croatian soap opera, Turbofolk, continues.)

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