By ANNE CANALP
The son of a Serbian mother and Croatian father, who is a University of Sheffield Honorary Doctor of Music, is known for rousing concerts which fuse “echoes from Jewish and Gypsy weddings, chants from the Orthodox and Catholic Churches and Muslim invocations” with a Balkan drinking and dancing culture.
The Belgrade-based musician and his Weddings and Funerals gypsy jazz band are not new to the island, but promise a flamboyant night at the Monday, September 25 festival closing concert.
He is currently touring Georgia, Italy and Poland and released his Champagne for Gypsies album in 2012 to support the Roma and set up the Gorica foundation to educate the persecuted gypsy population of Europe.
Mr Bregoviç described his music as “coming from that terrible frontier where for centuries Catholics, Orthodox Christians and Muslims made war and lived together -- music that our soul recognises instinctively and the body greets with an irresistible urge to dance”.
He added that he had played “youth idol guitarist in Eastern countries for 15 years until I was sick and tired of it”. He composed music for the 1988 Kusturica film Time of the Gypsies and retired to a small Adriatic island, but his dream was shattered by the war in Yugoslavia.
The musician was exiled in Paris to roam the world with his music, composing for and starring in two films and working on an opera while becoming an honorary citizen of Buenos Aires, Tirana and Athens.
Girne Municipality festival co-ordinator Derman Atik said: "We are proud to present such a world famous star and invite everyone to come and enjoy a wonderful closing concert. Ticket prices will be confirmed soon."
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