Chopin Piano Fest Pristina

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Chopin Piano Fest Prishtina
Chopin Fest Official Poster (2013).jpg
Chopin Fest Official Poster (2013)
Genre Classical Music

First Edition - 15.04-25.04.2010

Second Edition - 12-24.04.2011

Third Edition - 12.04-05.05.2012

Fourth Edition - 06.04-28.04.2013

Fifth Edition - 04.2014
Location(s) Prishtina, Republic of Kosovo
Years active 2010-present
Founded by Besa Luzha and Lejla Pula-Haxhiu

Chopin Piano Fest Prishtina is a festival that was established in Prishtina, Kosovo, by the Kosova Chopin Association, on the occasion of the 200th anniversary, in 2010, of the birth of the composer Frédéric Chopin.[1]


Menan Berveniku, local pianist plays in the Young Pianist Podium 2010

The festival is the result of joined efforts of Dr. Lejla Pula-Haxhiu (Artistic Director) and Besa Luzha (Secretary General and Festival Manager). Formed only to celebrate the 200th birth of Chopin, the festival was a great success and was greatly appreciated by the Kosovan audience. The festival continues to be organized annually, becoming a traditional piano festival held in spring every year. The festival is considered to be a national treasure.[2] In its 5 years of formation it has offered interpretations by both world famous pianists such as Peter Donohoe,[3] Janina Fialkowska, Kosovan classical musicians of international renown like Ardita Statovci and Alberta Troni, and local talents.[2] The Festival strives to promote the art of interpretation, the proper value of music and the technicalities that accompany it.[2] The Festival has served as inspiration for the formation of other music festivals like Remusica and Kamerfest.[3]


Young Pianist Podium 2013 - Fatjona Maliqi

Because there is no Opera House in Kosova, this festival is held in locations such as the Red Hall (Albanian: Salla e Kuqe),[4] or the Swiss Diamond Hotel Hall.The festival faces serious trouble because of not being able to secure a proper music hall,[4] and still struggles to find a permanent venue.It usually hosts 2-3 concerts a week, culminating in the final evening. The closing night always organised with the cooperation of the Kosovo Philharmonics, a local Kosovan pianist and an international pianist[1] The merger of a local pianist and an international one is seen as a bridge between local and international music, and as such can contribute to the recognition of Kosovo worldwide.[5] Although it holds the name of Chopin, the festival is not limited to composed works of Chopin, but rather well-written and performed works of all musical eras, classical and contemporary.[1] This promotion of music and musical value has resulted in ever-growing numbers of the audience.[6]

Promotion of local composers and pianists[edit]

The festival strives to promote music composed by local composers and musicians. Pianists invited to play at the Festival are asked to play pieces composed by Kosovan musicians.[7] Such demands were not always met as international pianists refused to play such works.[7]

Promotion of young pianists and musicians[edit]

In its editions the festival tries to promote local young talents in a Pianistic Podium. Pianists from the local music school "Prenk Jakova" and the music majors at the University of Prishtina are carefully chosen to perform at one of the nights of the festival.[8] This promotion is done in order to boost local musicians and musical education, as it is considered[9] to be in ruins.



The 2010 Edition was a celebration of the 200th anniversary of Chopin. It is the first edition that hosted a Pianists Podium.

Lejla Pula (soloist) performs with the Kosovar Philharmonics in the Final Closing night of the Festival
Date Performer Location
15.03.2010 Christopher Hinterhuber Red Hall
17.03.2010 Pianists Podium Red Hall
21.03.2010 Lejla Pula, Mariana Leka Red Hall
22.03.2010 Tribue to Chopin Red Hall
08.04.2010 Ardita Statovci Red Hall
12.04.2010 Anita Tartari, Didi Tartari Red Hall
15.04.2010 Lule Elezi, Antonio Gashi Red Hall
22.04.2010 Heribert Koch Red Hall
25.04.2010 Kosovo Philharmonics and Soloists Red Hall



The 2011 Edition was a celebration of the 200th anniversary of Listz. It was the first edition to host a Young Pianists Podium.

Gottlied Wallisch plays in the 2011 edition of 'Chopin Fest'
Date Performer Location
12.04.2011 Heribert Koch Red Hall
14.04.2011 Lule Elezi, Antonio Gashi, Venera Mehmetagaj Red Hall
16.04.2011 Gottlieb Wallisch Red Hall
19.04.2011 Young Pianist Podium Red Hall
20.04.2011 Alberta Troni, Sanije Matoshi Red Hall
21.04.201 Sihana Badivuku-Hoxha, Zana Badivuku-Basha Red Hall
24.04.2011 Kosovo Philharmonics and Soloists Red Hall



Date Performer Location
12.04.2012 Janina Fialkowska Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
14.04.2012 Peter Donohoe Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
17.04.2012 Endre Hegedys Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
19.04.2012 Marten Kasik Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
22.04.2012 Kosovo Philharmonics and Soloists Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
24.04.2012 Rame Lahaj, Alberta Troni Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
26.04.2012 Trio Celebre Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
30.04.2012 Pianists Podium and Concert Matine Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
05.05.2012 Ozcan Ulucan, Birsel Ulucal Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel



This edition celebrated the work of Verdi.

Peter Donohoe plays in Diar Hall on April 15, 2013.
Date Performer Location
06.04.2013 Balkanic Sextet 'Pro Arte' Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
08.04.2013 Martin Kasik Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
11.04.2013 Claire Hungaci Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
15.04.2013 Peter Donohoe Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
17.04.2014 Trio 'Celebre' Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
19.04.2013 Vocal-Pianistic Night Salla Diar, Swiss Diamond Hotel
23.04.2014 Young Musicians Podium Red Hall
25.04.2013 Vocal Night in honor of Verdi Red Hall
28.04.2013 Kosovo Philharmonics and Soloists Red Hall


Critics and reviews[edit]

"The Chopin Piano Fest Prishtina is already a traditional festival of piano music in Prishtina, therefore its citizens are proud that this festival is named after the name of the capital of the Republic of Kosovo, thus represents successfully Kosova and Prishtina in particular within the worldwide community of art and music. Through their participation, Prishtina is honoured by the presence and performances of well known pianists and musicians coming from many countries. This is a good opportunity that the artists get to know the values of Kosovan society, Prishtina, and their professional colleagues by becoming friends of our city and promoting its cultural life. I wish to express my gratitude and that of the citizens of Prishtina, toward all our music artists, especially the Kosovo Chopin Association that is organizing this festival for the third time. Their dedication enriches our culture and the cultural life of our city."

— Dr.Isa Mustafa, Mayor of Prishtina[10]

"I would have said 'No' to any other offer, but I remembered the [Kosovar] people whom I admire and I was very curious to come. I wish I could stay longer and hear Kosovan musicians perform. Everything was organized better than I would have thought. The piano was exquisite, because in a lot of places I have performed it was not good enough. I give them my praise."

— Janina Fialkowska[11]

With its unique specifics and profile, this festivals are completing the rich mosaic of cultural activities that are organized throughout the year. Ministry of Culture, having the mission not only to promote the arts and heritage of Kosovo but also the mission to enable the cultural and artistic cooperation of Kosovo and other countries in the world, is honored to support this festival."

— Memli Krasniqi, Minister of Culture[10]


As a non-profit festival, Chopin Piano Fest Prishtina relies fully on local businesses and governmental agencies for donations and support.[1] Even with this financial help, the Festival is a challenge to organize.[11] The Festival expects growth of governmental support, as it is seen as crucial for the organization of the Festival and the music scene in general.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Luzha, Besa. "Chopin Piano Fest Prishtina". WordPress. Retrieved 2014-02-23.
  2. ^ a b c Selmani, Arber. "'Chopin Fest' eshte pasuri shteterore". Retrieved 2014-03-01.
  3. ^ a b ""Chopin Piano Fest", në kujtim të Verdit". Koha Net. Retrieved 2014-02-23.
  4. ^ a b Bislimi, Bekim. "Opera dhe Baleti, ende "pa kulm" mbi kokë". Evropa e Lire. Retrieved 2014-02-23.
  5. ^ Tarani, Eldita. "KamerFest: Njohja e Kosovës me Nota Muzikore". Jeta ne Kosove. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
  6. ^ Pulaj, Drilon. "Stone, Troni e Matoshi në "Chopin"". Zeri. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
  7. ^ a b "Festivalet nuk i japin përparësi literaturës muzikore shqiptare". KohaNet. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
  8. ^ ""Chopin Piano Festival" sjell emra të njëjtë me program të ri". KohaNet. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
  9. ^ Besiana, Xharra. "Në Shkolla Nuk Ndihet më Muzika". Jeta ne Kosove. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
  10. ^ a b c d e f Katalogu i Festivalit. Komuna e Prishtines. 2012.
  11. ^ a b "Ka nisur "Chopin Piano Fest Prishtina 2012"". Koha Net. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
  12. ^ Bislimi, Bekim. "Një vit pa lëvizje domethënëse kulturore". Radio Evropa e Lire. Retrieved 2014-03-01.