In its evening edition of January 25, 2023, Jutarnji list publishes an article entitled Sherlock Holmes for Papandopoulos, written by journalist Lana Ribarić. At the center of interest is the “great search for 195 autographs of the famous composer” and the persistent musicological research of Davor Merkaš phD, producer-editor at the Music Information Center of the Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall.
“Looking for autographs is ‘nosing and sniffing’, invoking fate that does not always end in a happy ending. However, thanks to the work of Croatian Music Information Centre, the history of Croatian music will be written differently than it would otherwise be written,” Merkaš pointed out, describing among others his travels, adventures and searches for the manuscripts of great and lesser-known Croatian composers. This is a particularly important part of the activities of the Music Information Center, expressed in the phrase preservation and digitization of Croatian musical heritage, which has been financed by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia and the City of Zagreb for several years.
“Thhttps://min-kulture.gov.hr/e material we find awaits study, analysis and processing. The autographs we found refer to the anthology works of Bersa, Gotovac, Papandopulo, Kunc, Brkanović, Lhotka. It is crucial to find the notes, because then the music is saved, it can be digitized. The next step is performance, recording and distribution. In attics and basements, apartments and legacies, we have so far collected hundreds, if not thousands, of original music records!” said Merkaš and added “Dora Pejačević died exactly one hundred years ago, and we only recently published her works and made it possible for the world to get to know her music”. With this, he referred to the extremely important activity of the Music Information Center, which is precisely at its center the promotion of Croatian music through finding, publishing and distributing sheet music and performance material with the aim of public performances by Croatian authors around the world… “We published the scores of the operas Ljubav i zloba and Porin by Vatroslav Lisinski and Nikola Šubić Zrinjski by Ivan Zajc, three anthology Croatian operas, but the whole series of operas was not published. Even Ljubav i zloba was published in 2018. It’s almost as if the Austrians are now publishing Mozart’s Magic flute. So, our musical potential is unknown to the world”, reports Jutarnji list Merkaš’s words.
This type of musicological “mining” activity, although hard-laborin and time-consuming, is showing more and more its importance, and thanks to the publishing activity of the Music Information Center its significance, justification and purposefulness, because #BezNotaNemaIzvedbe (There is no performance without sheet music) and achieving the goal: to make Croatian music accessible and visible in the world.
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