Dani Bošnjak and Ana Batinica on the concert Minestrone all'Italiana
Flutists Dani Bošnjak and Ana Batinica will present contemporary Italian compositions at the Minestrone all'Italiana Concert to be held in Lauba in Zagreb on Monday, 16 December. The two musicians have been collaborating for many years, as Dani is Ana’s teacher and mentor, and gave us a short interview in which we talked about their current collaboration and the preparations for the December 16 concert.
“Ana is the last student I brought to Zagreb. I am happy that I had seven such students, as I have always done private teaching. I worked in Split for a while, and also in Omiš, where I am originally from. I heard her at a competition; she came from Šibenik to Zagreb to study at the Music Academy and we have been a team ever since. Her taking over my place at the Cantus is a logical continuation of this story. I am happy and content that she is now also a part of the Zagreb Philharmonic, where we both work,” explained Dani.
They both play in several ensembles, and were kind enough to tell us about their current projects.
“I work full-time for the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra, but I am also a member of the Cantus Ensemble, a guest member of the Zagreb Flute Ensemble and a member of the Osor Trio. I also try to play the flute solo program as much as possible, as well as recitals with pianist Elizabeta Adžaga. At the initiative of the team responsible for the previous edition of the Music Biennale Zagreb held last spring, violist Aleksandar Jakopanec and I have been intensely collaborating on the children’s programs for the past year,” stated Ana, while Dani gave us a background on his career.
“I started as a musician in the opera orchestra in 1989, first in Split and then in Zagreb, and then in 1992 I started working for the Zagreb Philharmonic. From the beginning, I have been a member of almost all chamber orchestras in the country. I have only retained membership at my dear Varaždiners, so I play solo with a lot of ensembles,” explained Dani Bošnjak.
Ana also revealed to us how her flute love story began.
“I cannot really remember my music beginnings. At the age of 5, my parents enrolled me in ballet classes, and then in music school, probably because I loved doing home performances, although my entire family is linked to music in one way or the other. My older brother played clarinet in the wind orchestra Šibenska narodna glazba, the pride of the city and also its cherished tradition. Their journey to Paris shortly before I had to select an instrument made me choose flute and not piano as I originally intended, since I wanted to join them one day, full of dreams of travelling," she confessed.
Dani added that he had chosen flute at the age of 7, and despite wanting to turn to something else at some points, the flute had remained his instrument of choice even though it was played mostly by women. He also told us about some of his particularly memorable recent concerts.
“I am working on a project with Olivier Messiaen’s music with the Harlekin Ensemble. This summer we held two concerts in Zagreb where the program was presented for the first time, although we have held several concerts in Istria before that. It is a conceptual concert trilogy, and we have already recorded the first two parts. I hope that by the end of this season, that is in 2020, we will perform and record the third Messiaen cycle. I am happy to be working with great people, great artists who were the nuts and bolts of this whole Messiaen story and who are members of the Harlekin Ensemble. Also, I have been a part of a wonderful trio with Edin Karamazov and Aleksandar Milošev for many years. Recently, I performed with them at a wonderful venue in Banja Luka. I didn’t even know that there are such wonderful places out there. The hall was packed," said Bošnjak.
Ana Batinica disclosed what she was preparing for the December 16 concert.
“For the upcoming concert of the Cantus Ensemble I am preparing the composition Beyond the River by Italian composer Giorgio Gaslini who left behind a rich opus ranging from jazz opera to film music, and who quoted a beautiful dance theme of “Tristan’s Lament" by an unknown composer from the 14th century in the composition I will be performing. This will be followed by solo performances of renowned Italian flutist Roberto Fabbriciani and Dani Bošnjak, and then together we will perform for the first time a Nicola Sani’s piece for three bass flutes and electronics,” said Batinica at the end of our interview.
The introductory chat for the concert, moderated by Berislav Šipuš, begins at 7:15 pm, and the concert begins at 8 pm. Admission to the programs is free.