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San Francisco Tamburitza Festival 2013

  Sat - Sun, Feb 16-17, 2013         7:30 PM        7:30PM Saturday-Welcome Dance; 12PM Sunday-Concert,dancing, $15,$12 advance, Children free. Food available both days.

Event Details


For the past decade the Croatian American Cultural Center has annually showcased the best tamburitza* music in California and presented nationally renowned tamburitza orchestras.On President's Day weekend each February; the San Francisco Bay Area is filled with singing, dancing, and the music of the tamburitza. For two days halls reverberate with a rich tapestry of tambura music both traditional and contemporary. The ensembles perform for listening, play dance tunes, polkas and waltzes and circle dances, and sing Becar tunes until the bar closes late at night.

T-Rroma from Chicago will be headlining.Although Tamburitza Rroma (T-Rroma) is based in Chicago, its repertoire, which includes original as well as folk and modem compositions, is as rich and diverse as the culture of the Romani, from which it takes its name.


T-Rroma's members all are seasoned performers who have  been honing their musical skills since childhood. Each has performed with first-class musicians and singers in America, Canada and the former Yugoslavia. It is T-Rroma's ability to blend soulful passion with technical expertise its knack for delivering complex instrumental pieces and vocal arrangements with what appears to be effortless precision that has makes them one of the most sought after Tamburitza bands in the country.Also, performing will be ChubritzaSidro Tamburitza OrchestraSt Anthony's Tamburica Orchestra, Mladost Bosne dancers,  Slavonian Traveling Band with Muhamed Kocan. John Morovich will teach the kolos and klapa singing.  Learn tambura style and lore from hall of fame musician Mark Forry.  Food available for purchase both days.  (Hristo cooks on Sat)

 *Origin of the Tamburitza:

Tamburitza's origins can be traced back to Europe the mid-1800s, when along the central Danube River and its tributaries, tamburasi (tambura musicians) began to form ensembles. While it is believed that Hungarian Roma were the first to play tamburitza instruments in groups modeled on their famous violin ensembles, the first known ensemble was formed in 1847 in Osijek in eastern Croatia. They played a repertoire much like that known today: Croatian folk songs, and circle dances, folk songs and dances from neighboring peoples, light classical songs and instrumental pieces, and popular music of the day.

Five instruments are key to tamburitza music: the small lead prima (or bisernica), the alto brac (or basprim), the tenor celo, the chordal bugarija or kontra, and the large fretted bas or berde. It is not unusual to find other instruments in a tamburitza orchestra; violin and accordion are most common.

When massive immigration from eastern Europe to North America peaked in the years 1870-1910, tamburitza ensembles began to make their appearance in the immigrant's new country. The first known American ensemble was active in the early 1890s around Steelton, Pennsylvania.

The first tamaburitza ensemble in San Francisco was organized in 1902 when Ilar Spiletak, a carpenter from Dubrovnik, started the Tamburica Orkestar "Zvonimir"

Advance Tickets:

Klapa Singing Workshop by John Morovich at 5PM before the Sat 2/16 Welcome Dance at the San Francisco Tamburitza Festival. Klapa is the beautiful and complex form of traditional group singing that is immensely popular in the Dalmatian region of Croatia. At times it is performed with Tamburitza or Mandolins. Come to the workshop, stay for dinner with food by Hristo and dance afterwards!

Tambura panel by Mark Forry at 1PM before the Sunday 2/17 Concert.  "Contemporary Trends in Tambura Music" 

A schedule is now posted. 

Hotel accomodations: A block of rooms is being held at a special rate for our upcoming SF Tam Fest for the following nights - feb 15, 16 and 17, 2013 at the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel and Suites San Francisco Airport, 264 South Airport Blvd.South San Francisco, Ca 94080

For reservations call; 650-624-3700 or 1-800-368-7764. Room rate:  $92 plus applicable taxes. Code: San Francisco TamFest. Overnight parking charge:   $9.95 plus tax. Deadline for booking at special rate: 2/8/2013


Tamburitza Festival 2013 - Schedule Draft 4        
Saturday 2/16 - Welcome Dance        
5PM Klapa singing with John Morovich        
6:30PM sound check with Chubirtza        
7:00PM Food ready by Hristo        
7:30PM John Morovich teaches kolos        
8:30PM Chubritza plays        
9:15PM T-Rroma        
Sunday 2/17 - Performances, Dancing & Sing-a-long        
Main Hall     Tambura Kafana (Bar)  
11:30PM Set up & Sound check with T-Rroma        
noon Doors open        
noon Food ready        
1PM Tambura Panel: "Contemporary trends in tambura music"      
  Mark Forry with guests Joe Kirin and John Morovich      
2PM T-Rroma        
3PM Chubritza        
4PM St Anthony's        
5PM Mladost Bosne - young Bosnian dancers        
5:15PM Slavonian Traveling Band        
  with Muhamed Kocan & Hajrudin Hajric        
6PM T-Rroma - dancing 6PM St Anthony's    
7PM Chubritza-dancing 7PM Sidro    
8PM St Anthony's-dancing 8PM T-Rroma    
      9PM T-Rroma + everybody


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St. Anthony's Tamburica Orchestra Croatia
St. Anthony's Tamburica Orchestra "Croatia" of Los Angeles was founded in 1960 by Josip Bachman, a master tamburas and director from Osije...

Sidro, formerly known as Blue Adriatic, is one of Northern California's favorite Croatian Tamburitza Orchestras. For over 20 years, Sidro has been per...

Slavonian Traveling Band
The diverse sound and repertoire of The Slavonian Traveling Band crosses all boundaries and speaks for tolerance and hope. The popular eight member en...

Mladost Bosne
Mladost Bosne is a Bosnian, folk dancing, youth ensemble from the San Jose area. Their aim is to learn, preserve and present authentic Bosnian cultura...

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