Main Stage, 20th July 2019

Since 1961, the small town of Guča in Central Serbia has been the venue for the annual festival of brass music, a competition to determine the best Brass musicians on Earth, attracting over 300.000 people every year. The Boban Marković Orkestar used to be among the winners every time, receiving the “best orchestra” award in 2000 as well as “best trumpet” for the maestro himself in 2001 – his 5th personal win. Since then, Boban decided not to compete any more, but simply performs as an honoured guest. 

According to his father’s will, who was also a brilliant brass instrumentalist, Boban Marković took to trumpet when he was five, and by fifteen he became a professional musician. By his mid-twenties, he was amongst Yugoslavia’s finest. By his mid-thirties, he was the King of Balkan brass, a trumpet player whose fame meant he existed as a single name celebrity. 

Boban’s talent is not due to musical studies, but to the internal sense of rhythm that he possesses in his blood, as well as his passion and self-taught skills. All of his knowledge comes from his natural predisposition and his heart. His father Dragutin was right: Boban’s destiny was to be a trumpet player. A brilliant one. The king. 

Boban Marković’s music was first introduced to Western audiences through Emir Kusturica’s films Underground and Arizona Dream. But now the band is touring all over the world with 13 albums released so far. 

Marković’s attitude concerning the development of brass band music is consistent with the history of the style. Rooted in early transpositions of popular folk tunes, Gypsy brass band music began with the introduction of the trumpet to Serbia in 1804, during the Karageorge uprising. Used as a tool for communication amongst Turkish soldiers, the trumpet was eventually picked up by Gypsies, who incorporated their own intricate rhythmic sensibilities into the style, bringing the music closer to the ecstatic, danceable form that is heard today. 

Gypsy brass band music is characterized by rapturous arrangements stuffed with beautiful, yet rocking, melodies against an often-pounding low-end harmonic backdrop. So, expect fire on stage! 

Boban Marković - trumpet, vocal
Filip Stojanović - trumpet
Ivan Pavlović - trumpet
Zhivorad Dimitrijevski - saxophone
Boban Demirović - tenor horn
Miroslav Sejdić - tenor horn
Goran Spasić - tenor horn
Stefan Petrović - tuba
Djavid Demirovski - drums
Danijel Jovićpercussions 

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