Sunday, 21 July 2024
Mark Thomas

Mark Thomas

Mark Thomas - The editor and big chief of The Dubrovnik Times. Born in the UK he has been living and working in Dubrovnik since 1998, yes he is one of the rare “old hands.” A unique insight into both British and Croatian life and culture, Mark is often known as just “Englez” or Englishman. He is a traveller, a current affairs freak and a huge AFC Wimbledon fan.


As part of the International  Late Summer Music Festival Dubrovnik, pianist Ida Gamulin and cellist David Grigorian will perform in the atrium of the Rector's Palace. The beginning of the concert is at 9:30 pm, and the program will include works of Franz Schubert and Johannes Brahms.

This night shows a traditional cooperation of Dubrovnik Late Summer Music Festival summer and the Laus Academy of Dubrovnik which brings excellent musicians and pedagogues. Ida Gamulin, a Croatian pianist who has been performing for domestic and international concerts for thirty years, will perform at the concert tonight. In addition to numerous public performances, pedagogical activities, guest performances around the world, this pianist is recording for BBC, France Musique, CBS, Bayerischer Rundfunk, EMI-Mava, HRT, Cantus-HDS discography and uninterruptedly for Croatia Records. Invitations to foreign performances as well as continuous attendance at Croatian concerts show the success of Ida Gamulin in all European countries, Russia and the USA, in the most prestigious concert halls.

The pianist will be joined by David Grigorian, cellist with international career and renowned music educator whose classes were attended by many successful young musicians, who have won the highest prizes at numerous international competitions. He taught at music institutions in Novosibirsk, Gorkom and Moscow. Today he lives in Germany and teaches at the Hochschule des Saarlandes für Musik in Saarbrucken.

The program of the concert is Schubert's Sonata for piano in B major and Sonata for the Cello and Piano No. 2 in F major by Johannes Brahms.

First Salt Festival opened last night in Ston salt works with a program entitled "Wine, salt and jazz". Visitors had the opportunity to enjoy local wines with the expert guidance of certified sommeliers. It was all accompanied by jazz interpretations by Maja Grgic and Igor Vlahusic.

In cooperation with Event Lab Dubrovnik, 4 typical county wines - rukatac (marastina), posip, malvasia and plavac mali were presented. The Certified Dubrovnik Sommeliers Sinisa Lasan, Ksenija Matic, Ana Bitanga Jukic and Frane Kovac explained the specialties of each wine, their origin, taste and all the characteristics of a particular variety. When combining food and wine, salt plays a very important role. It is well known that the perception of wine in the mouth changes depending on the food that comes with it, the sommeliers explained.

A jazz evening in a relaxed atmosphere, along with a drop of good wine, oysters, Ston cake and other local specialties was a great start of this new festival. There was a large number of visitors - both domestic and foreign.
The Festival continues tonight with the Day of Marin Drzic and it will last until September 1st. You can see the program here.

Over the past three summer seasons, seaplanes became common sight in Croatia. At first, it was a real attraction for locals, but later it proved a significant and an integral part of summer maritime and air scene.

European Coastal Airlines operated services to fifteen destinations along the Croatian coast and between islands with four De Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter aircraft. An hour-long pleasant flight took passengers from the city of Split to the islands of Mali Losinj, Korcula, Hvar, Rab, Pag, Lastovo, and Vis as well as to Dubrovnik, Zadar, Rijeka, Zagreb, Ancona and Pescara in Italy. The flight prices were favourable thus, it is not surprising that during only three summer seasons seaplanes in Croatia carried around 40,000 passengers.

According to data from European Coastal Airlines (ECA), in 2014, 2015 and partly in 2016, ECA aircraft carried around 500 passengers per day.

Regardless of the good business results, the airline was grounded in August 2016 when its air operator’s certificate (AOC) was temporarily withdrawn by the Croatian Civil Aviation Agency, apparently due to safety concerns. Because of ongoing legal discussions, the airline suspended all operations and cancelled 130 jobs. In December 2016, the CEO announced that operations would resume in 2017. However, as of February 2017, company's website and Facebook page were not updated with any new information and no flights were resumed by the end of July.

Nevertheless, every cloud has a silver lining. According to the latest information, some serious investors are interested in the project of taking over ECA and seaplane flights on the Adriatic. The rumour says it is the Airways company, which is officially registered in Montenegro.

In case of taking over the seaplane traffic on the Adriatic, the Airways company backed by Australian and Arab capital, should obtain the operating license from the European Union because they want to enter small aircraft traffic in Croatia, which is an EU member country.

Apart from the operating license, potential investors in seaplanes on the Adriatic will also need landing and take-off concessions, which European Costal Airlines had obtained, but cannot be automatically conveyed to a new company-buyer.

Last summer the popular American actor Brad Pitt visited the Croatian coastal city of Sibenik, in order to make arrangements about his future investment in the area, according to the media. However, it seems that the actor did not express any kind of interest in investing in Croatia; he only enjoyed his visit to Sibenik as any other tourist.

It is highly likely that Brad Pitt is not interested in investing in a more than 800 million Euros worth tourist-residential complex that TFI Holding from Switzerland plans to build in the Zablace suburb of Sibenik.

According to unofficial information from one of the local representatives of the investors, they did not lead any serious negotiations with the Hollywood actor but his visit was of a friendly and private matter.

Even though the famous actor is out of the game that he was never part of, his visit proved more than helpful to the local community. The public found out about the planned project as well as potential new investors, whilst the Swiss investors imposed themselves as serious players with relationships and acquaintances all the way to Hollywood.

It is difficult to claim that Brad Pitt was responsible for the change of the General Urban Plan (GUP) of the city of Sibenik, but the fact remains that only a few weeks after his visit, the GUP was changed. Therefore, pine forests, macchia, and olive groves around the Mala Solina Lake became the zone of mixed construction of accommodation facilities and supporting infrastructure.

The investors have already purchased the land mostly from small private owners and now they are waiting for the urban planning of the area to be made, which, according to the local authorities, is to start this autumn.

Furthermore, the next step for the investors is to collect all the necessary construction documentation. They estimate that the construction should start in a year.

The project that is estimated at more than half a billion Euros envisages the construction area of 450,000 square metres with villas, hotels and a marina as well as a school, a surgery and a church. The architect Nikola Basic designed the whole project; he is also responsible for designing the famous Croatian tourist attractions such as the Sea Organ and the Greetings to the Sun in Zadar as well as the walking path through the Sibenik Channel.

The TFI Holding company is a development company, which gathers all interested investors. It is registered in a small town of Wollerau in Switzerland, and is owned by Jean Paul Uldry, who is also a director of the CHR Eko Projekt company headquartered in Sibenik. Founded in 2007, the company was registered for construction of power plants, whilst today it is a tourism and real estate company.

Sunsail, the yacht rental company based in the ACI Marina Dubrovnik, have donated an electric mobility scooter to Marijan “Ogi” Ogresta from Cavtat.

Marijan Ogresta was involved in a traffic accident in 2010 when a speeding van hit him in Cavtat causing life threatening injuries. Since that dark day he has passed numerous operations, rehabilitations and treatments and thanks to the dedication of his family and friends is fighting the long road to recovery.

For the first few years he was almost completely bed-ridden but recently has been able to get around with the help of a specialised wheelchair. This gift from the team at Sunsail will hopefully make Marijan, or Ogi as he is affectionately known, even more mobile.

His father, Damir, commented that “A huge thank you to the team at Sunsail who donated this electric mobility scooter.”

Well done Sunsail for this donation and sense of community spirit.

Around 3.00pm this afternoon fire-fighters from the Dubrovnik Fire Brigade were called out to intervene with a fire at the main landfill in the region, Grabovica. Twelve fire-fighters along with four vehicles tackled the fire.

"Grabovica was burning and the fire spread to the surrounding hills at one point, but we managed to suppress it. The fire is now under control and the garbage in the landfill will be soaked in order to avoid the spread of a fire,” commented the commander of the Dubrovnik Fire Brigade Stjepko Krilanović. He added that the fire-fighters at Grabovica will remain for the time being.

dubrovnik fire at landfill

The Dubrovnik Summer Festival may be over but it’s not the end of the cultural events in Dubrovnik. Tonight is the opening night of the International late Summer Music Festival with a concert in the ambient Rector’s Palace in the heart of the Old City of Dubrovnik.
This is the fifth year in a row that the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra has organised this festival and once again it brings together internationally renowned artists in the atrium of the Rector’s Palace.

International Late Summer Music Festival Dubrovnik is a festival launched by Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra for the first time in 2013 and it found received rave reviews. It takes place in late August and lasts until late September. And according to the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra “Its aim is to keep the presence of music and cultural vibrancy in Dubrovnik after the Dubrovnik Summer Festival.”

The opening night will see the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra, the Dubrovnik Chamber Choir and one of the best choirs in Croatia, the Oratory Choir of the The Cantores sancti Marci Oratory choir from Zagreb, as well as one of the most sought after Croatian baritones, Leon Kosavic, and the great Monika Cerovcec. Tonight concert starts at 9.00 pm tonight in the Rector’s Palace.

dso international late summer music festival

This year's program includes 15 events - symphony concerts, chamber music concerts as well as recitals that will take place in the Rector's Palace atrium.

All information on concerts and tickets is available on the phone number + 385 20 417 110, on the DSO web site and on their social networks. Reservations can also be made via mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and ticket prices range from 100 to 400 Kuna.

Here is the full program for the International late Summer Music Festival in Dubrovnik:

26.8. Saturday

Rector's Palace at 9 pm
Opening Concert
Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra - The Cantores sancti Marci Oratory choir - Dubrovnik Chamber Choir - Christoph Campestini, conductor (Austria) - Monika Cerovčec, soprano - Leon Košavić, baritone
M. Meštrović - Let them in
W.A. Mozart - Symphony No.40 in G minor, K.550
G. Fauré - Requiem, Op. 48

28.8. Monday

Rector's Palace at 9 pm
Great Romantics: Shubert & Brahms - Ida Gamulin, piano - David Grigorian, cello
Concert organized in cooperation with LAUS Academy Dubrovnik
F. Schubert - Piano Sonata in B-flat, D. 960
J. Brahms - Cello sonata No.2 in F major Op. 99

29.8. Tuesday

Rector's Palace at 9 pm
Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra - Christoph Campestrini, conductor - Dubravka Tomšič Srebotnjak, piano
R. Schumann - Concerto for piano and orchestra, Op. 54
A. Dvořak - Symphony No. 7 in D Minor, Op. 70

31.8. Thursday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
Ruben Dalibaltayan, piano (Armenia)
F. Chopin - 4 Mazurkas - Mazurka in A Minor, Op. 17 No 4 - Mazurka in A Minor, Op. 67 No 4 - Mazurka in C Major, Op. 67 No 3 - Mazurka in F Minor, Op. 63 No 2
C. Debussy - 2 Preludes - La terasse des audiences du claire de lune - Feux d`artifice, from Preludes, book 2 - L` isle joyeuse, L.106
F. Liszt - Consolation No. 3, S.172 - Hungarian Rhapsody No.6 in D flat Major, S.244/6

1.9. Friday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra - Christoph Campestrini, conductor - Đana Kahriman, violin
L. Sorkočević - Symphony No. 4 in F Major
R.V. Williams - The Lark Ascending, romance for violin and orchestra
W.A. Mozart - Symphony No. 38 in D major, K. 504 “Prague”

5.9. Tuesday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra - Stefan Sanderling, conductor (Germany) - Radovan Cavallin, clarinet
G. Rossini - L'italiana in Algeri, overture
M. Mangani - Verdiana, concert fantasy for clarinet and orchestra
F. B. Mendelssohn - Symphony No. 4 in A major, Op. 90 „Italian“

7.9. Thursday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
Recital - Maroje Brčić, guitar
H. Haug - Alba
N. Coste - Les Bords du Rhin, op. 18 - Les Soirées d'Auteuil, op. 23
J. K. Mertz - Bardenklänge
G.Listeš - Fantasia op. 7
J. Rodrigo - Junto al Generalife

8.9. Friday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
DSO String Chamber Ensemble - Dmitry Sinkovsky, violin and artistic leadership (Russia) - Luca Pianca, lute (Italy) - Mark Thomas, narrator
A. Vivaldi - Concerto for lute, strings and basso continuo
A. Vivaldi - The Four Seasons

9.9. Saturday

Rector's Palace at 9 pm
Recital - Stylus phantasticus - Dmitry Sinkovsky, violin (Russia) - Luca Pianca, lute (Italy)
H.I.F. Biber - Mystery Sonata no. 10 in g minor, 'Crucifixion'
H. Purcell - O Solitude, my sweetest choice, song Z. 406
M. Uccellini - Sonata terza, Op. 7
F. Rognoni - Vestiva i coolli, variation on Palestrina Vestiva
H. Purcell - Fairest Isle, Schmelzer Sonata 4 (Chaccona)

12.9. Tuesday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra
Tomislav Fačini, conductor - Dmitry Sinkovsky, violina (Rusija)
L. van Beethoven - Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 61
L. van Beethoven - Symphony No.7 in A Major Op. 92

14.9. Thursday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
Jazz - Matija Dedić, piano - Special guest: Merima Ključo, accordion - CD promotion "Male ljubavi"

15.9. Friday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra - Christoph Campestrini, conductor (Austria) - Nikolina Pinko Behrends, soprano
F.B. Mendelssohn - Hebrides Overture (Fingal's Cave), Op. 26
B. Britten - Les Illuminations, Op.18
J. Haydn - Symphony No. 88 in G Major, Hob I:88

19.9. Tuesday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra - Marc Tardue, conductor (Canada) - Jasminka Stančul, piano (Austria)
W. A. Mozart - Piano Concerto No. 9 in E flat Major KV. 271
G. Bizet - Symphony in C Major

21.9. Thursday

Rector's Palace at 9 pm
Jasminka Stančul, piano (Austria) - DSO String Quartet
A. Dvořak - String Quartet No. 12 in F Major, Op. 96
R. Schumann - Piano Quintet in E-flat Major, Op. 44

22.9. Friday

Rector’s Palace at 9 pm
Festival Closing Concert
Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra - Christoph Campestrini, conductor (Austria) - Martina Filjak, piano
J. Brahms - The Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat Major
R. Schumann - Symphony No. 4 in d Minor, Op. 120

The Mayor of the City of Dubrovnik, Mato Frankovic, received an official visit yesterday from the Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the Republic of Croatia, His Excellency Won-sup Park. At the meeting the pair discussed the possibilities of enhancing tourism cooperation between Dubrovnik and the Republic of Korea.

Ambassador Won-sup Park took the opportunity to thank Mayor Frankovic and his team for winning the recent election and taking over the leading position in the city, noting that this was not his first visit to the city of Dubrovnik and hopes for continued cooperation and the launching joint projects.

Mayor of the City of Dubrovnik Mato Frankovic received an official visit yesterday from the Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the Republic of Croatia His Excellency Won sup Park

Mayor Frankovic pointed out that the Republic of Korea is a significant market with which the City of Dubrovnik wants to achieve friendly and business relations, and he reiterated that the number of guests from the Republic of Korea has increased in recent years.

During the visit, Ambassador Park expressed the desire from the Korean side for additional investments in the development and expansion of the tourist offer in Dubrovnik and Croatia, as well as the joint action on the promotion of Dubrovnik in the Republic of Korea.

Mayor Frankovic welcomed the statement of interest for cooperation and investments in the field of tourism and other activities aimed at strengthening the already good cooperation between Dubrovnik and the Republic of Korea.

The Voice of Dubrovnik


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