One of the best acoustic guitarists in the world, Tommy Emanuel, and the best guitarist in the Balkans, Vlatko Stefanovski, will open the 16th Guitar Art Summer Fest (GASF) tonight at Kanli Kula in Herceg Novi. The European Union in Montenegro supported the organisation of this five-day guitar spectacle, along with the Ministry of Culture and Media, the Municipality of Herceg Novi, the School for Basic Music Education and other sponsors.
“Tomi Emanuel is visiting Herceg Novi for the first time, and ever since I started organising the festival here in 2006, I’ve had the desire to bring him,” festival director Boško Radojković said at the press conference.
Tomi Emanuel did not hide his delight that he will be performing on the beautiful stage of Kanli Kula. He emphasised how happy he is that after a long break due to the coronavirus pandemic, he can finally perform outdoors again. The legendary guitarist Vlatko Stefanovski, who is taking part in the festival for the second time, pointed out that he adores Herceg Novi, where he often performs.
As part of the first evening of GASF, the “Guitar Visual Art” exhibition will be opened in the “Sue Rider” gallery on Bellavista. During the festival, seven free concerts will be organised at the Music Square in the Old Town Duo Duende, where Ivana Cikić and Aleksandra Tepavčević will perform on Wednesday from 21:00 CEST, and Petar Dobričanin and Dijana Orlanidić (flute) accompanied by Miroslav Ilic on the harmonica will perform from 22:00 CEST. Aleksandar Bubanja will perfomer on Thursday from 21:00 CEST and Turkish guitarist Cenik Erdogan at 22:00 CEST A concert by Tamara Jokić and Dušan Popović Lipovac will be organised on Friday from 21:00 CEST, while Saturday will be reserved for the performance of the Spanish guitar virtuoso Rafael Aguirre at 21:00 CEST, while from 22:00 CEST, the best professors, students, and guitar students who passed the festival programme called “Guitar Integrations” will perform. The Municipality and the Tourist Organisation of Herceg Novi supported this programme.
“I especially want to highlight the accompanying segment of the festival – guitar integrations that include young musicians from Herceg Novi and Montenegro and provide them with the opportunity to learn from the greatest authorities,” says the Secretary for Culture and Education Ana Zambelić Pistalo.
The European Union in Montenegro supported the organisation of “Guitar Integration.”
“Guitar Integrations, apart from being much more fun than the European Integration, is very similar in its basic premise. We share expertise, we share knowledge, we work together, and, in that process, we enrich and make each other better. This is, essentially, what the European Union is trying to do with Montenegro – to share the best European practices, to help improve this country and the standard of living for its citizens, so it ultimately can become part of the EU family,” says Riccardo Serri, Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Montenegro.
During the festival, as part of the guitar integrations, the world-renowned Spanish guitarist, Rafael Aguirre, will work with guitar professors and students from Montenegro. According to the tradition, on the last day of the festival, Montenegrin guitarists will have a joint concert with their mentors.