- Nicholas Tochka
(b Tirana, Allbania, 1955). Albanian singer . A major figure in popular music for close to three decades, she was a longtime singer with the State Estrada in Tirana and a fixture at the annual socialist-era popular singing competition, Festivali i Këngës (‘Festival of Song’), organized by Radio Tirana. During the mid-1960s, she was discovered at the age of 12 and subsequently promoted as part of an ongoing campaign to find amateur talent. She made her début at the Festival of Song in 1966. By the 1980s, she had won several top prizes, including a first prize for her performance of Feim Ibrahimi’s 1981 composition Krenari i Brezave (‘The Pride of Generations’). She became especially well known for her interpretations of këngë epiko-lirike, epic-lyrical popular songs similar to art songs that came into fashion just as she began her career in the 1960s. In 1985 she became one of the first popular singers to be honoured with a solo recital tour throughout the country. After the State Estrada was disbanded in ...