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An inspiring evening of solos interpreted by Bernarda and Marcos Fink

The renowned mezzo-soprano Bernarda Fink and bass baritone Marcos Fink enchanted the audience in yesterday's Songs without Borders concert at the Bozar Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels. They paid homage to the outstanding achievements of European, including Slovenian, and Argentine musical and poetic creativity.

State Secretary at the Slovenian Ministry of Culture Ignacija Fridl Jarc at Songs without Borders concert at the Bozar Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels | Author Thierry Monasse/STA

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In her speech before the concert, State Secretary at the Slovenian Ministry of Culture Ignacija Fridl Jarc said that the carefully prepared programme would not only take the audience back to our common past from Germanic, Romanic and Slavic Europe, but would also tap into the rich South American tradition. She continued: "We believe that this openness and acceptance of diversity, which enriches and enables us to live in peace and creative cooperation, is the greatest achievement of European integration and a prospect of the future."

Bernarda and Marcos Fink have been placing Slovenian solo songs alongside the great European and Argentine solo songs. "When interpreted by them, Slovenian songs are equally included among the greatest achievements of European lyrical poetry set to music," said Fridl Jarc.

Bernarda and Marcos Fink started their gala concert with Bella porta di rubini by Italian composer Andrea Falconieri and concluded it with V noči by Slovenian composer Fran Gerbič. In-between, they treated the audience to an excellent interpretation of songs by various European and Argentine composers – Hugo Wolf, Franz Schubert, Henri Duparc, Antonín Dvořák, Manuel de Falla, Astor Piazzolla, Alberto Williams, Carlos Guastavino, Benjamin Ipavec, Josip Ipavec, Anton Lajovic, Kamilo Mašek and Josip Pavčič.

Through their selection of songs, the singers also illustrated their relationship with both their homelands – Slovenia and Argentina. Thus, they included their favourite song from the album Slovenija!, Mesec v izbi composed by Anton Lajovic, as it represents their story. They also sang other songs from the album, as well as several from the Canciones Argentina compilation. For these two albums, the singers were awarded the Prešeren Fund Prize, the highest recognition in Slovenia for achievements in the field of artistic creation. A Grammy nomination for the Canciones Argentina album also brought them international recognition.

In last night’s performance, the singers were accompanied by the excellent Croatian-Slovenian pianist Vladimir Mlinarić.