About us

The Croatian Music Centre

The Croatian Music Centre (Hrvatski glazbeni centar – HGC) is an association established in Zagreb on 14th March 2003. Its aim is the encouragement, development and advancement of the educational, professional, artistic and social interests of musical and theatrical artists and promoting their artistic and cultural activity in Croatia and abroad. We are promoting musical creativity in the country with a special emphasis on provision for the younger generation of musicians. The main motto of the programme on which the idea of the HGC is based is: “Let’s listen to Croatian music!”

During years of activity in Croatia, with international help, the HGC has staged a series of successful concerts, guest performances and tours, involving international and Croatian artists.

One of our first projects was hosting the ensemble “La piccola Scalla” (Milan, Italy) performing the play “The Maid-Mistress” by G. B. Pergolesi at the Dubrovnik Summer festival in 2003. That marked the start of cooperation with the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra (DSO), out of which developed a series of successful concerts within “Dubrovnik Gala” in 2004 and 2005, guest performances of DSO in Graz, Vienna, Linz and Munich in 2006, and tours in Germany and USA in the season of 2006/2007.

Between 2006 and 2010 we hosted at concerts throughout Croatia many world-famous musicians, such as the guitarist Sharon Isbin, the conductors Zvonimir Hačko and Rista Savić, the pianist Eugen Indjić, the violinists Carla Trynchuk, Annette von Hehn and Mario Hossen, the bassist Yuan-Chun Pan, the American composer Larry Alan Smith, and others.

One of our most important projects was certainly the tour of “Orchestre de Flûtes Français” with the Croatian pianist Martina Mičija Palić and the world famous French flutist Pierre-Yves Artaud in April 2005, with concerts at Salle Cortot in Paris, the Lisinski Concert Hall as part of the “Twenty-third Zagreb Musical Biennale – 2005 ISCM World Music days”, the Croatian National Theatre in Varaždin, the City Theatre “Zorin Dom” in Karlovac, the Istrian National Theatre in Pula, the Governor’s Palace in Rijeka and the Church of St. Francis in Rovinj.

We also organised the participation of young Croatian artists within the activities of the Young Vienna Philharmonic, a tour of the European Master Orchestra, a concert on the occasion of Croatia’s Diplomacy Day, guest appearances of soloists from Germany and Austria, and concerts at the “Dubrovnik Gala” – namely, guest appearances of American soloists and appearance with the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra.

One of the exceptional concerts put on by the Croatian Music Centre was the project “Croatian Mass”, the premiere of the work of Croatian composer Igor Kuljerić at Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall in April 2006.

We also organised several of charity concerts, among which one should draw attention to our work in cooperation with the Croatian League for the Struggle against Cancer, and the concert on the occasion of the “World Day of the Sick 2007” at the Mimara museum in Zagreb, where appeared the national principal baritone Vitomir Marof, the Japanese soprano Mayumi Kamei, the pianist Martina Mičija Palić, the clarinettist Bruno Philipp, and the Albanian pianist Silvana Skenderi.

In the concert season of 2010/2011 we organised the guest appearance and tour throughout Croatia, as well as a seminar at the Musical Academy in Zagreb, for Carla Trynchuk (professor at St. Andrew’s University, Michigan, and the Juilliard School of Music, New York), and the master class on American music by Dr Larry Alan Smith (professor at Hartt School of Music, Dance and Theater, University of Hartford), under the auspices of the US Embassy in Zagreb.

In 2017, we have achieved significant cooperation with the Festival Seviqc Brežice, which joined us as a partner in the realization of the unique concert performance of the Flanders recorder quartet at the Zagreb Museum of Arts and Crafts.

The emphasis of the work of the HGC is on cooperation between Croatian artists and world-renowned musicians, and alongside the concerts already mentioned, we frequently organise smaller chamber music concerts at which such cooperation occurs – greatly appreciated by the public. Similarly, we help our members and organise their appearances worldwide, at the same time promoting Croatian composers (like B. Papandopulo, I. Kuljerić and others).

In 2013, aiming for greater specialisation, we founded “Projekt Lazarus”, with the intention of researching, revivifying, and promoting the Croatian musical heritage, with special emphasis on the sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries – especially those works that have still not seen the light of day, remaining stored in numerous monastic collections, archives, libraries, museums and other institutions. Unfortunately, very few top-class experts are currently engaged in discovering, restoring, transcribing and preparing them for contemporary performance. In attempting to save from oblivion valuable monuments of Croatia’s musical heritage, an unquenchable source of confirmation that it is part of the Western European cultural and civilizational world, the professional musicians of “Projekt Lazarus” have performed the works of outstanding Croatian composers – Ivan Lukačić, Vinko Jelić, Ivan Šibenčanin, Damjan Nembri and Francesco Sponga Usper. As in the case of Nembri, we are, to the best of our knowledge, unique in Croatia in marking the 120thanniversary of the birth of Dr Dragan Plamenac, the founder of modern Croatian musicology – whose last discovery and subject of study was, indeed, the “Brevis et facilis psalmorum” of Damjan Nembri, published in Venice in 1641.

Ensemble “Projekt Lazarus” held numerous concerts in Croatia and abroad, presenting Croatian baroque music heritage at the respected festivals such as 47th and 48th Varaždin baroque evenings, Seviqc Festival Brežice (Slovenia), 58th Hvar summer festival, 12th Croatian music festival in Vienna, 7th Festival Gaetano Callido in Venice (Italy) and others. Within the 48th Varaždin baroque evenings we have achieved the artistic collaboration which have resulted in first contemporary performance of chosen pieces written by Francesco Sponga Usper at the concert held by “Projekt Lazarus” and musicians of the Japanese “Orchestra Libera Classica” whose artistic leader is renowned cello-player Hidemi Suzuki.

The programs of Croatian music centre are funded by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Republic of Croatia and the City of Zagreb as well as the Zagreb County and other cities and local communities. Croatian music centre also thanks our donors such as private companies or various individual donors.