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date: 12 August 2020


  • Refik Hodžić


Town by the northwest border of Bosnia and Herzegovina, with a population of about 50,000. Signs of musical life can be traced along with the development of civilized society.

The Middle Ages (12th century onwards) witnessed the presence of sacred music, in Christian monasteries and churches, and later on, during the Ottoman rule (16th–19th centuries) among Muslims in dervish monasteries. There was a rudimentary tradition of secular music, associated with instrument building and accompanied song.

During the Austro-Hungarian administration (1878–1918), musical life gradually became Europeanised. The first visiting musicians, mostly Czechs, Austrians, Hungarians, etc. arrived. Schooling underwent reforms and music as a subject gained prominence. Many confessional cultural-educational, tamburitza, and singing societies were established in Bihać and its surroundings.

Between the two world wars (1918–41), musical life was also shaped by the music clubs of Bihać grammar school, the Krajišnik tamburitza society, and the fire-fighters’ brass band....

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