Eurovision.tv: Croatia maybe didn’t manage to qualify for the Finals, but we all enjoyed that completely different Eurovision entry coming from Dalmatia. Your song Mižerja could be even considered as a national treasure, as it was composed, arranged and performed in a style protected by UNESCO. You must be very proud because of that?
Klapa s mora: We are very satisfied how we represented our country and ourselves in Sweden. That was an opportunity to share this beautiful, traditional a capella song with the whole of Europe. Among all the activities we have had there, we even performed our song in the St. Peter’s church in Malmö. It was really something special as we have shown, what Croatian traditional music all about. But we also managed to explore the whole journey through various musical styles we have in Croatia, while singing some old and some new, modern songs to the audience there, including what is considered to be today’s modern pop music from Dalmatia. Talking about our cultural heritage like Klapa singing or Sinjska alka, with all those people in Sweden, was an amazing experience and we are very thankful for all of that. Also for the great support we had from our national broadcaster – HRT.
Was it a part of strategy as well. In other words, promoting your country with the beautiful Adriatic coast, that is now officially being member of the EU, starting today… Is there any truth in that?
In any case, Croatia has a lot to show to Europe and to the rest of the world, especially the Adriatic coast, Dalmatia, but the countryside and many beautiful cities too. Nevertheless, Klapa singing and traditional equestrian competition Sinjska alka are definitely one of our most valuable brands that we are very proud of. We are sure that this project we worked on together with HRT made a great promotion for our and the world’s cultural heritage, as well as for Croatia on her way to European Union.
You are all great singers and it seems like you are very connected with Croatian traditional music. Would you say that the best way to present some country at Eurovision Song Contest is through some ethno motives?
Ethno music, traditional songs and cultural heritage are very important to the people from Dalmatia, but in parts of Croatia too. We do cherish the cultural treasure we have, always trying to do our best and investing our time and energy as much as we can. For Bojan Kavedžija, that turned out into a profession, as he is working in Ensemble Lado. It’s not an easy job, as we do all deal with globalisation and a faster way of living. In other words, it can be very hard to keep what we nurture organic or as it was, but at the same time interesting enough for those who never heard something like that. We see that as our mission. It is our responsibility to share the treasure with the rest of the world. At the same time, that’s the best promotion for Croatia, next to the achievements of our athletes, other artists and scientists.
It’s almost two months since the Eurovision Song Contest in Malmö, what will make it the most memorable for Klapa s mora?
True, time flies quite fast. We got back with a lot of impressions and we could say that we do have a picture about that great event. I think we are all going to remember the Eurovision Song Contest as the biggest and unique music competition, with that whole media presence. Being a small part of all of that for me, but I think for the other members of the group as well, means a lot. It was a great honour and we will remember those moments till the rest of our lives. Another thing that we could consider memorable are all those nice moments we had sightseeing in Malmö and Sweden. Spending time, hanging out with other artists and colleagues too. There is some specific euphoria and passion, that took control over all those months even before the Contest, so during all those preparations and during those two weeks in Sweden.
Did this Eurovision experience change you in any way?
I have to admit that I do feel more experienced, thanks to this different kind of organisation, production, even if we are talking about the approach to the music. What is also very important is that I have five new friends now, who I knew before, but we had a chance to get to know each other much better. We are all very thankful to our maestro Mojmir Čačija who gathered us in one Klapa (band). He helped us to gain more self-confidence and strength and taught us that it's much more important to give your best and that a lot of work is what counts.
During your time in Sweden, you had so many rehearsals, even those none-official ones. What was the hardest and the nicest things you experienced while being there?
Honestly, those rehearsals were not so hard, including rehearsing on the stage. It was a great pleasure actually. But the most memorable moment is when you get on stage, in front so many people in the Arena, also knowing that there’s like half a billion viewers around the world, waiting to hear and see your performance. So, that was the nicest experience, the hardest would be getting up early, especially cause we had so many activities during the day. But we also needed some time for us to hang out in the city, checking some nice places.
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For some reason, a lot of us got the impression that you were actually rehearsing your song the most. It sounds reasonable, as there are many parts of it, where all five of you need to provide an exact, harmonious performance. Did anyone of you count how many times you had to sing it?
That would be amusing thing to know. We do wonder how many time we had to sing that word Mižerja, but unfortunately nobody knows. Quite a lot, that’s for sure. However it did not make us tired. For us it was very enjoyable that we could perform our song a capella very often. We will record that version, hopefully quite soon. Because we heard that a lot of groups in Croatia would like to have it, in scores as sheet music.
If you would have to perform your song in other musical style, what genre would it be? Rock, Dance, Latino...?
Well, why not? We recorded one version with tamburas (a stringed instrument from Balkan region), so why not in some other version as well. All of that sounds interesting. We need to talk with the author of the song first and who knows it might really happen.
What’s going on with the Klapa at the moment? Any plans and/or projects you are working on?
This period after the Eurovision Song Contest we all used to spend some time with our families, work and everyday life. We all have our own groups (Klapas). Still we do have some plans. But at the same time it’s not easy to gather all the members, as some live in Zagreb and Karlovac and the rest of the group in Zadar, Šibenik and Sinj. Maybe if we would all gather half way in Gorski Kotar or Lika. No, I’m joking. We talked about it. It all depends on possible offers and interest. But I do believe that this is not the last what you have heard from Klapa s mora. In the meantime, we are going to continue to perform with our own Klapas and Marko is starting his solo career. There are some ideas but that’s all I can say at the moment. If we start working on something, we will let you know. We might record something until the end of this year, but let’s not talk way too much in advance.