The former Yugoslavia—particularly Serbia and Croatia—has produced a number of excellent classical guitarists, particularly in recent years. Artists such as Ana Vidovic, Miloš Karadaglić, Petar Jankovic, Sabrina Vlaskalic, Srdjan Bulat, Zoran Dukić, and the cavatina Duo’s Denis Azabagić are just some of the fine players from the region common on the world guitar circuit. But arguably the most accomplished is Serbian Uroš Dojčinović, who was just given a special Lifetime Achievement Award by Serbia’s National Association of Classical Musicians (UMUS)—the first guitarist ever given that honor.
Over his long and storied career, Dojčinović—whose studies included a degree in music from the Academy of Music in Zagreb (Croatia) and two doctorates from the University of Belgrade—has performed more than 3,000 concerts around the world, taught guitar and lectured at a number of different schools, written and arranged hundreds of pieces of music (many of them based on traditional Balkan folk sources), published many articles and contributed to various anthologies, and made dozens of CDs in a wide variety of styles. He is president of the Yugoslav Guitar Society and Foundation, and has served as artistic director or helped organize numerous Serbian musical events, including the famous Vrnjci classical music festival. In short, he is a tireless advocate for the guitar, and music in general, a worthy recipient for that high honor. For his part, Dojčinović credits the late Serbian guitarist/composer Jovan Jovičić (1926–2013) for pioneering modern classical guitar in Yugolavia, including the incorporation of traditional themes in his some of his pieces, and inspiring him.
Below is a video teaser for a DVD Dojčinović released a few years ago called Around the World, which gives a sense of his skill and the diversity of his repertoire. We’d urge you to search out more on YouTube.