Famous artists

The most important composers who have significantly influenced the development of tambura music, tambura orchestral sound and tambura itself are: dr. Josip Andrić, Branko Čenejac, Tihomil Vidošić, Mihajlo Vukdragović, Isidor Hadnadjev, Branko Rakijaš, Antoni Lorenc, Julije Njikoš, Maksa Popov, Sava Vukosavljev, Zoran Mulić, Miroslav Štatkić and others…
In addition to composers, an important role in the development of tambura music have conductors and  art directors of orchestras: from Subotica Pera Tumbas Hajo, Lazar Malagurski and Stipan Jaramazović ,from Novi Sad Janika Balaz, Zdenko Obad Šćitaroci, Ivan Sabo, Maksa  Popov from Belgrade, from Šid Dragoslav Krsmanović, from Sremska Mitrovica Milenko Bobić, Boško Bogičević from Ruma, from Futog Žarko Škoric and Jelene Obad Šćitaroci, Franja Knežević  from Kikinda, Budimir Stojanović  from Pančevo and many others.

Janika Balázs (Јаника Балаж or Janika Balaž) (December 23, 1925 in Lukino Selo in Zrenjanin municipality – November 12, 1988 in Novi Sad) was a famous tambura musician and band leader from Vojvodina, Serbia.

He was born 1925 to a Hungarian-speaking Romani family with strong musical tradition. His father's surname was Rác (or Rácz), which was a Hungarian term for Serbs that was considered derogatory, so he took the mother's surname Balázs. He grew up in Bečej, where he started playing violin in a local pub with 10 years of age. When he realized that he couldn't become the best violinist, he switched to ("prim" or "bisernica") tambura which he played ever since. Later, he played with "Braća kozaci" band in the area of Subotica and Horgoš. From 1948 to 1951, he worked in Radio Titograd in Montenegro, where he perfected his tambura playing.

From its foundation in 1951 to the end of his working career he worked in Radio Novi Sad and was a member of its Grand Tambura Orchestra. He was spending nights playing with his 8-men band in pubs of Novi Sad, especially on Petrovaradin Fortress, of which he became one of icons. During his career, he held concerts across the world, including 36 performances in Paris Olympia. Allegedly, he had several offers from United States and Soviet Union to move there and work as a tambura teacher, but he never wanted to leave Novi Sad, where he died in 1988.

Janika participated in several documentary and feature films. Songs "Osam tamburaša s Petrovaradina" (Eight tambura-players from Petrovaradin) and "Primaši" were dedicated to him. During his career, he worked with many renowned musicians, including Zvonko Bogdan and Júlia Biszák.

After his death, the city of Novi Sad raised a monument (authored by sculptor Lászlo Szilágyi), standing on a square opposite the Petrovaradin fortress across the Danube.

Source: Wikipedia

Sava Vukosavljev (born March 8, 1914. in Zmajevo,Serbia,died in 1996.)was a famous pedagogue, arranger, ethnomusicologist, composer and conductor. Already at the age of nine, he learned to play tambura and taken by the magical sounds of this popular instrument sought to master the technique of playing. In addition to his successful composer work and other work associated with music and tambura, he left us unsatisfied failing to place tambura as a musical instrument in to music schools in this area, equally as other musical instruments. Looking forward to it, Sava Vukosavljev prepared and adapted a new edition of tambura and tambura music playing for the curriculum of elementary schools in Vojvodina and Serbia under the title "Vojvodjanska tambura," and it was published by Matica Srpska in Novi Sad 1990.Today, thanking primarily to his efforts and work, the class of tambura exists in many elementary and secondary schools.

For his work and merit , Sava Vukosavljev received many honors and awards: Medal of merit for people with silver rays;. Order of the Golden Wreath of work; Iskru Prison Culture of Vojvodina, the Golden Badge Amateur Association of Serbia, and the October Prize of the City of Novi Sad, Vojvodina Veterans Charter Association, the Charter of Emigrants and the others.

Zvonko Bogdan (Звонко Богдан; born January 5, 1942 in Sombor, Serbia) is an eminent performer of traditional folk songs of Serbia, Croatia, Hungary and Romania. Apart from being famous as a singer, he is also a composer, painter and harness racer.

Bogdan sings both original and traditional songs (especially those of the Bunjevac people he belongs to) accompanied by the traditional tambura orchestra. Some of the songs he composed himself, including his most famous "Hej salaši na severu Bačke" ("Hey, farms of Northern Bačka").

    Some of his most recognized songs are:

  • Ej, salaši na severu Bačke
  • Već odavno spremam svog mrkova
  • Prošle su mnoge ljubavi
  • Govori se da me varaš
  • Kraj jezera jedna kuća mala
  • Neko sasvim treći
  • Beše jedan čovek
  • Šta li radi moja ljubav
  • Ne mogu se setit' leta
  • Bunjevačko prelo
  • Doći ću ti ko u staroj pismi
  • Spušta se noć na ravni Srem
Source: Wikipedia

Isidor Hadnadjev (born in Old Bečej, 25th March, 1909, died in 1990.), composer, melographer, music teacher, conductor and artistic director of vocal and instrumental ensembles, is a prominent figure in the musical life of the XX century in Vojvodina. As a child he learned to play the violin and the tambura and often played with older musicians in the Festival of Farmers. In 1928 he graduated Teaching School in Sombor, where he received his basic musical education with the renowned pedagogue Anton (Tune) Oswald. His musical development continued in the music school "Stankovic" in Belgrade in 1934, as well as at the Music Academy in Belgrade (1949 and 1950) with the famous music teacher Academic professor Mihajlo Vukdragović. In the period between the two World Wars, Isidor Hadnadjev was tightly involved in the field of choral music as a conductor of several famous mixed choirs. In 1938 for his creative work in improving the development of choral music he was awarded the Medal of the Federal and the Diploma of South Slaves singing tribal state in Belgrade. After the war in 1948 he founded the Music School in Bečej that became the focal point of cultural and musical life of this city, where he was the Principal for 12 years. In 1950 Isidor Hadnadjev was the first in this region to introduce the tambura in the regular class curriculum of the Music school. The best students attending this school later became the leading members of the Tambura Orchestra of Radio Novi Sad, among others the famous Čiča Sladić and his brothers, as well as the prominent Janika Balaž who occasionally visited this music school for tambura lessons. He gained special merit when contributing to the status improvement of tambura, as a folk instrument, participating together with Sava Vukosavljev and Branko Čenejac in the development of the textbook "The School of tambura" which was released in 1960 by the Federation of Music Societies of Serbia. In 1960 Isidor Hadnadjev was appointed to be the chief editor of folk music at Radio Novi Sad. He was the author of many well-known radio programs and program series, underpinning the music program of Radio Novi Sad for more than two decades. In the field melography, he collected and recorded over 650 authentic traditional folk songs. He composed and published a number of folk dances and instrumental compositions. He particularly paid attention in creating a large number of his own folk song compositions and a variety of folk melodies. For his lifelong work in the field of development, promotion and distribution of music culture Isidor Hadnadjev received numerous awards and recognitions.