Spona is a musical ensemble whose idea is fising Balkan music with flamenco elements. It has six members. Dušan Popovic Lipovac (guitar), Sara Kutlesic (piano) Radost Galonja (voice), Katarina Radivojević (percussion), Bojan Krtinić (clarinet/percussion), David Sic (bass/double bass). It tends to combine the elements from both music traditions of the lands sharing similar history. From traditional songs of Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia and sevdah all the way to Spanish rhythms inspired by rumba, tangos, bulerias, this ensemble is characterized with a powerful sound, recognizable melodies and harmonies close to the people from Balkan and Iberian peninsula.
Dušan Popović Lipovac is the creator of the project Spona. During his life in Spain he explored the possibility of fusing Balkan music with the elements from flamenco and composed Balkan Taranta – a composition which was a part of his master thesis. He also wrote the first bars of a composition named Entrada and later, the rest of the album Reflections from the Mediterannean.
Sara Kutlešić (piano) was born in 1990 in Užice where she went to elementary music school. She graduated high-school of music in Belgrade, class of Olga Dinić Mamula. After high-school, she enrolled into the Academy of arts in Banja Luka where she got her bachelor diploma in the class of Vladimir Cvijić, with whom she continued her studies in Belgrade receiving her Masters diploma. She participated in the master class of Yuri Kot.
During high-school, and especially during studies she performed in many concert halls in Belgrade, Banja Luka and other cities across Serbia and Bosnia & Hercegovina. She participated in several competitions as a solo player or in chamber music ensembles in which she earned 1st prizes in international competition for chamber music „Kosta Manojlović“ in 2009 and „Bienal“, Banja Luka in 2012. The same year, she was one of the organizers as well as participants of several humanitarian concerts. During her career she worked as a piano accompanist performing in Serbia, Bosnia and Hercegovina, Germany and other countries.
She currently works in the high-school of music: „Vojislav Lale Stefanović“ in Užice as a piano teacher.
Radost Galonja (voice/percussion) was born in 1993 in Gradiška. She received elementary music education in Turjak, while she finished high-school of music in Banja Luka. She began studying musicology in the Faculty of music in Belgrade in 2012.
Since 2011 she has been the president of board of directors in the “Skomrah”, association for cultural development, while at the same time being an active member. During her time at the association, she has participated in the organization of concerts with Skomrah Gal orchestra with guests. As a soloist (voice, saxophone and violin) she has been performing since 2005 in Bosnia and Hercegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia, Austria, Greece and Macedonia.
As of 2007 she has been a member of several choirs, investing most of her time with the choir Preobrazenje from Belgrade, where she had important appearances as a soloist. In 2009-2011 she was a leader of the Female voice group “Skomrah”. In 2011 she had her solo concert in the sold-out concert hall in Gradiška which attracted the attention of regional media.
Since 2015 she has been working as a correspondent for the column Culture on the website called Portal Mladih, for which she wrote several professional articles and interviews. She has also published several musicology works, researching topics like the musical legacy of Serbia and Bosnia & Hercegovina. She wrote critics and reports for the Vareš Classic Festival (VaClaF) in 2016 and reviews on the work of David Mastikosa for the publishing company Donemus. Currently, she is a director and organizer of the International music festival “KozArs” which takes place in Gradiška.
Bojan Krtinić (clarinet) was born in 1991 in Apatin where he received elementary music education, while he finished high-school of music and Academy in Novi Sad. In 2013 he enrolled into master studies in Belgrade where after a year he received his title as the Master of music arts. During his education, he won many prizes as a solo performer or as a part of chamber music ensembles. He was a regular member of Clarinet Choir of Academy of Arts Novi Sad, with whom he performed on significant number of concerts across the country and abroad. He cooperated with different chamber ensembles and currently is a member of clarinet quartet Joropo and trio Refleksije with Sanja Miladinović (violin) and Milena Popović (piano).
As a member of the orchestra, he played lead clarinet in the Academy of Arts in Novi Sad and Faculty of musical arts Belgrade orchestras. He was a member of International youth orchestra Triorca, and since 2014 he plays the second clarinet in the Novi Simfonijski orkestar Makris, under the conductor, maestro Predrag Gosta.
His individual artistic project under the name Bach was presented to the public in Novi Sad in 2016 where he was a finalist of the Acoustic music youth festival UNFEST. He actively plays with several jazz ensembles such as: Jazz Propeleros (Novi Sad), AkademX Trio (Belgrade), Skomrah Gal Orchestra (Gradiška). He is a professor of clarinet and saxophone in music school Filip Višnjić in Šid.
You can find out more about his solo project here: Bbach
David Sič (bass/double bass) was born in 1989 in Subotica, where he finishes high-school in the class of professor Arpad Cikos, after which he enrolls into the Academy of Arts in Novi Sad with professor Ivica Marusevic (bachelor and master). During studies he was a member of several ensembles such as Duo Contrabajando with Miroslav Idic on accordion which plays arrangements of tango classics; Baby Artysh, ensemble which dedicated their work to babies of the youngest age, in which he played bass and performed as an animator in interactive concerts. He is also a member of rock band from Subotica – Sabbatka. During his orchestral activity, he worked with solo performers and conductors such as: Lajko Felix, Andres Mustonen, Thomas Anderson, Lelo Nika, Simon Robinson, Jesus Medina, Krzysztof Penderecki etc. He participated in numerous festivals such as: Kotor Art, Strings Festival in Sremska Mitrovica, A Fest, Guitar Open Festival in Subotica… Currently, he is solo bassist of Kotor Art Festival Orchestra and member of Symphonic Orchestra of Vojvodina. Besides performing, he is a professor of double bass and jazz bass guitar in music school in Subotica.
Katarina Radivojević was born in 1998. in Belgrade where she takes her first musical steps as a member of a children quire „Kolibri“ under the conductor Milica Manojlović with whom she was part of many concerts, tv shows, and the opening ceremony for the „Eurovision“ contest in 2008.
She went to the elementary music school „Vatroslav Lisinski“, playing piano in the class of professor Ranka Petrovic, and percussions in the class of Boris Bunjac. She continued her education in the high school of music „Mokranjac“ in the class of Ivana Meles and Margita Drakulovic-Meles. During high school she performs as a member of chamber music ensembles in the class of Ana Simonuti (piano) and at the same time she was a member of Youth Philharmonic Orchestra „Borislav Pascan“. She was a full time member of percussion ensemble „SPE“ (Stankovic Percussion ensemble“ under the conductors Sinisa Jovic and Ivan Marjanovic and member of Guitar philharmonic orchestra „Dusan Trifunovic“.
In 2015 she was selected as a percussionist in the International Youth Symphonic Orchestra with whom she performed in Serbia, Slovenia and Macedonia. The following year she enrolled into Academy of music, department for music pedagogy.