The KotorArt Podium – A Reference for Young Artists

Followed by the performance of students of the Vida Matjan Primary and Secondary Music School from Kotor, and the students of the Music Academy in Cetinje, the thematic segment titled KotorArt Talents at Don Branko’s Music Days was rounded off by members of the Iskra piano trio. On Thursday, August 5, in the Church of the Holy Spirit, young Montenegrin artists – violinist Dušan Obrenović, cellist Teodora Uskoković and pianist Miljana Nikolić – presented themselves with the works of Bedřich Smetana, Sergei Rachmaninoff and Astor Piazzolla.

Iskra trio.jpg

This year’s KotorArt talents podium was completed by the performance of young artists who took their first musical steps in Podgorica, at the Vasa Pavić Music School. After completing secondary music school, the three artists studied at the Academy of Arts in Novi Sad. Dušan Obrenović obtained his master’s degree under Professor Miroslav Pavlović and is currently enrolled in doctoral studies under Professor Mihal Budinski; Teodora Uskoković is enrolled in master’s studies under Professor Marko Miletić, while Miljana Nikolić received her master’s degree under Professor Biljana Gorunović.

During their studies so far, the artists have achieved notable results in competitions. Teodora Uskovković is a first-prize winner of the Golden Lyre Competition in Podgorica, the Golden Stairs in Valjevo, and the Davorin Jenko Competition in Belgrade, while Miljana Nikolić has twice represented Montenegro at the Paris Piano Festival. Dušan Obrenović has further improved his skills at master classes held by prominent violinists such as Vili Ferdinandi, Vujadin Krivokapić, Benjamin Ziervogel, and Sándor Galgóczi. Together with Teodora Uskoković, he has attended the Summer Camp of Chamber Music and Orchestra, led by conductors Elizabeth Atl, Thomas Post, and Jean-Michel Despin. Miljana Nikolić auditioned and became part of the Academy of Arts team at the Järna Festival Academy in Sweden.

The musicians opened the concert with the Piano Trio in G minor, Op. 15 by the Czech composer Bedřich Smetana, a romantic work of standard three-movement form, and they continued in the same key, also with a romantic work. Adding to the program Trio élégiaque in G minor, No. 1 by the Russian author Sergei Rachmaninoff, they highlighted the diversity of compositional poetics of the Romantic era and demonstrated their performance achievements. While in the first Trio it was necessary to show a solid concentration, differentiation between a multitude of characters, focus on demanding rhythmic flows and mutual communication, in the second composition there was still room for the melodic line and expression.

The Iskra Piano Trio ended the concert with the music of Astor Piazzolla and his famous piece Verano Porteño from the Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas cycle. With this piece, in the style of new tango, the artists brought the scent of Buenos Aires summer, and their performance in its entirety marked another season of KotorArt talents.