Sanja Ilić

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Sanja Ilić
Aleksandar Sanja Ilić.jpg
Background information
Birth nameAleksandar Ilić
Born (1951-03-27) 27 March 1951 (age 68)
Belgrade, SFR Yugoslavia
  • Composer
  • keyboardist
Years active1963–present

Aleksandar "Sanja" Ilić (Serbian: Александар Сања Илић; born 27 March 1951) is a Serbian composer, keyboardist and architect. He founded the group Balkanika in 1998, and with them he represented Serbia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 in Lisbon, Portugal, with the song "Nova deca". He was previously the keyboardist of the Yugoslav band San from 1971 to 1975.

Life and career[edit]

Ilić was born on 27 March 1951 in Belgrade.[1] His father was a composer, while his brother Dragan is a musician and member of the band Generacija 5.[2] Ilić was married to Serbian actress and model Zlata Petković until her death in 2012. They had one son together who was born in 1984.[3][4][5]

Ilić began his music career at age 12, when he composed a song for Serbian singer Dragan Laković. At age 16, he composed the song "Baj baj baj", which was later performed by Bisera Veletanlić at Jugovizija 1976, placing third. He graduated from the University of Belgrade Faculty of Architecture.[2] Ilić continued his music career in the 1970s, performing in various bands such as Vragolani and San.[3] He later composed the music for the Red Star Belgrade football team anthem.[3] In 1982, he composed the song "Halo, Halo" which represented Yugoslavia in the Eurovision Song Contest 1982, performed by Aska. He later composed the song "Princeza", which attempted to represent Yugoslavia in the Eurovision Song Contest 1984.[3]

In 1998, Ilić founded the music ensemble Balkanika, and they performed their first concert together in 2000. With Balkanika, he represented Serbia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 in Lisbon, Portugal, with the song "Nova deca".[6][7]


  1. ^ "Времеплов (27. 3. 2011)" (in Serbian). Radio-Televizija Srbije. 27 March 2007.
  2. ^ a b ""Наша прича" Сања Илић Балканика (текст)" (PDF) (in Serbian). Radio-Televizija Republike Srpske. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  3. ^ a b c d "Химну Звезде никад нећу заборавити" (in Serbian). Politika. 14 December 2008.
  4. ^ "Andrej Ilić: Preko potreban odmor". Hello. 2 February 2013. Retrieved 18 March 2015.
  5. ^ "Preminula glumica Zlata Petković". Hello. 3 December 2012. Retrieved 18 March 2015.
  6. ^ Welsh, Eleanor (20 February 2018). "Serbia: Sanja Ilić & Balkanika win Beovizija 2018 and will represent Serbia in Lisbon!". ESCToday.
  7. ^ Gligorov, Miki (20 February 2018). "Sanja Ilić and Balkanika win Beovizija 2018". escXtra.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Tijana Bogićević
with "In Too Deep"
Serbia in the Eurovision Song Contest
(with Balkanika)
Succeeded by
Nevena Božović
with "Kruna"
Preceded by
Marko Kon & Milaan
Beovizija winner
Succeeded by
Nevena Božović