Kogoj Days bring nine concerts, one in Italy

Kanal – The Kogoj Days, an international festival of Slovenian contemporary classical music, will open with tonight’s concert by the acclaimed Slovenian Octet in the town of Kanal, west. Due to Covid-19, only one of the festival’s nine concerts will be played outside Kanal, across the border in Italy.

The opening concert in Kontrada Square will be accompanied by an address by Culture Ministry State Secretary Ignacija Fridl Jarc, to be followed by an exhibition of illustrator and painter Ančka Gošnik Godec at the Riko Debenjak Gallery.

The Slovenian Octet will sing a number of songs by Slovenian composers, including by Josip Ipavec, as 2021 is dedicated to marking the centenary of his death.

Saturday will be dedicated to poetry by acclaimed contemporary Slovenian poet Feri Lainšček to be sung by young singer Ditka.

The festival will then continue next Friday with a concert by the chamber orchestra Cantabile, with a concert by virtuoso pianist Aleksander Gadžijev as one of the highlights following the next day.

The closing concert will be given by the Feguš String Quartet at a local church in the town of Lusevera in Italy, or Bardo in Slovenian, on 10 October.

Andrej Feguš, one of the four brothers forming the quartet, has been the festival’s artistic director for the second year running, this year selecting four pieces newly written by up-and-coming Slovenian composers.

The festival is named after Slovenian composer Marij Kogoj (1892-1956) and is being held for the 42nd year running.

In 2015, it was honoured with the Order of Merit by President Borut Pahor for its contribution to the promotion of Slovenian classical music.

It was praised for giving the stage to more than 300 new Slovenian compositions to be performed for the first time since it was launched 1979.

The festival was also praised for promoting a single Slovenian cultural space, a reference to the Slovenian ethnic community across the border in Italy.

Kogoj Days concerts are usually held in the towns connected with the composer in Slovenia and Italy, but due to the pandemic, all events were held in Kanal last year.