Program Team of the Music Biennale Zagreb 2023


Margareta Ferek-Petrić

Ferek-Petrić, Margareta studied at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna with Iván Erőd, Chaya Czernowin and Klaus-Peter Sattler. She won many fellowships, such as the Austrian State Scholarship Composition in 2016. In 2010, she won the residence at Casa Zia Lina on the island of Elba by the Thyll-Dürr Foundation; in 2011, she was awarded the Theodor Körner for the orchestral composition ‘Take 7’ and the award for music by the City of Vienna in 2017. In 2018, she was the resident artist of the summer festival in Carinthia – Carinthischer Sommer; she is a winner of two awards at the Prix Annelie de Man competition in the Netherlands for a composition ‘Ištarata,’ and she won the annual Boris Papandopulo award by the Croatian Composers’ Society and the Josip Štolcer Slavenski award by the City of Čakovec for the piece ‘All the World’s a Stage.’ She will be a representative of Croatia at the World Music Days in Tallinn, and she was chosen as the artistic director of the Music Biennale Zagreb for the 2021/2023 season. Margareta has written a huge number of pieces for solo and chamber ensembles, several vocal and orchestral pieces, music for theaters and big bands. Her compositions are regularly performed by many renowned ensembles and musicians around the world, and some of her work is released by the Decca Records, Neos music and Croatia Record labels. In 2015, she became a member of the Austrian Contemporary Music Society – ÖGZM, and she has been a regular member of the Croatian Composers’ Society since 2016. Margareta lives and works in between Vienna and Zagreb.

Davor Hrvoj

Davor Hrvoj began his journalistic career in the mid-1980s on the Jazz štand Show for Radio 101, which he then edited and hosted since the late 1980s. In the late 1980s he also became an associate for the Croatian Radio. He is the creator and host of the shows Vrijeme za jazz (Time for jazz) and Cro-jazz on the HRT 3 program, as well as an associate for the HTV’s Svijet jazza (The world of jazz) show. His works have been published in newspapers and magazines since 1990. Davor is the editor of the Croatian jazz website (, and was awarded the Special Plaque of the Croatian Blues Forces for his many years of systematic promotion of blues. The Minister of Culture of the Republic of Poland awarded him the Order of Merit for his contribution to the promotion of Polish culture. He wrote features in the Zagreb Lexicon of the Miroslav Krleža Institute of Lexicography. Davor was a keynote speaker on jazz music at the Croatian Music in the 20th Century conference, organized by the Matica hrvatska; and is also the author of the lecture “Jazz in Croatia – sketch for history” published in the journal Croatian Music in the 20th Century (Matica hrvatska, 2009). He also wrote an article on Croatian jazz for Grove Music/Oxford Music Online, as well as a text on jazz and blues in Croatia for the national addition to a large illustrated encyclopedia Music published by the Dorling Kindersley (UK), whose Croatian edition was published by the Mozaik knjiga. Davor was a member of international panels for the European Jazz Prize and the international competition of young jazz musicians, Jazz Juniors in Krakow, as well a member of the artistic council of the international project Hitch of Music Exchange. He is a member of both the HGU’s Porin Music Award Expert Commission and the HDS’s Annual Awards Commission, as well as the Cultural Council for Music and Performing Arts of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia. He has served on the Cultural Council for Music of the City of Zagreb and the Cultural Council of the City of Sisak and serves as Vice-President of the Cultural Council for Music and the Performing Arts of the City of Rijeka. In 2021, he was presented with the plaque by the Croatian Composers' Society for his contribution to Croatian music.

Tomislav Oliver

Oliver, Tomislav graduated in musicology (in 2009), and then in composition (2011), under Professor Marko Ruždjak, from the Music Academy in Zagreb. He was a Rotary Club Zagreb scholar and in 2010 he received financial support from the Croatian Composers’ Society “Rudolf and Margita Matz” Foundation for young composers. In 2011, his compositionObsidienne for chamber ensemble earned him the University of Zagreb’s Rector’s Award and in 2012 also the Stjepan Šulek Awardof the Croatian Composers’ Society. In 2015, he received the Josip Štolcer Slavenski Award of the city of Čakovec for his dance suite for chamber ensemble Complex Poetry (In’ei Raisan). He has written compositions for solo instruments, chamber ensembles, instruments with electronics and for symphony orchestra. He attended workshops at the International Summer Academy Prague–Vienna– Budapestheld by Nigel Osborne and Michael Wendeberg (where he won an award for his composition III: Dancers to a Discordant System) as well as a composers seminar International Week in Ljubljana held by Klaus Ager and Gyula Fekete. From 2011 he works at the Department of Composition and Music Theory of the University of Zagreb’s Music Academy. In 2015, he enrolled in postgraduate studies at the Mozarteumin Salzburg in the class of Stephan Winkler.

Ivan Josip Skender

Skender, Ivan Josip (Varaždin, 1981). After graduating from high school in 1997, he enrolled at the Zagreb Academy of Music where he studied composition in the class of Professor Željko Brkanović as the youngest student of composition in the history of the Academy. In 1999, he started to study conducting under of Professor Vjekoslav Šutej. He won the Rector’s Award for the composition Heads and Tails. He attended a two-year postgraduate study of orchestral conducting in Vienna under Uroš Lajovic. Skender was the first composer to represent Croatia at the European multimedia festival Music Masters on Air in 2012. He was also awarded a Rudolf and Brigita Matz scholarship for young composers. As a conductor, he has collaborated with numerous Croatian and foreign orchestras, choirs and opera ensembles. The Palma Collegiate Choir won numerous awards at Croatian and international competitions under his baton (2004–2012). As a conductor, he is particularly dedicated to performing and premiering compositions by contempo30th Music Biennale Zagreb rary Croatian authors. The members of the Cantus Ensemble for contemporary music chose him as their permanent conductor in 2012. From 2005 to 2014 Skender worked as the choirmaster at the Croatian National Theatre Opera in Zagreb, and from 2014 as a conductor at the Opera. He served as acting artistic director of the Zagreb Opera during the opera season 2013/2014. In 2016 he debuted at the Staatstheater Braunschweig, conducting Tosca. In 2009, Ivan Josip Skender became Professor Uroš Lajovic’s assistant at the Zagreb Music Academy, where he now works as the Assistant Lecturer at the Department of Conducting, the Harp and Percussion. He received the Stjepan Šulek Award for composition in 2017, for his work Phantasmagoria.

Nina Čalopek

Curator of the MBZ program for children and youth
Nina Čalopek graduated in musicology from the Music Academy in Zagreb, after which she enrolled in postgraduate doctoral studies in literature, culture, performing arts and film at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb. She has been actively involved in production and organization, particularly in the contemporary music branch.
She has been the executive producer of the Cantus Ensemble since 2006, the executive producer of the Music Biennale Zagreb (MBZ) since 2009, and a member of the MBZ Program Committee since 2019. For the jubilee 60th edition of the MBZ she also acted as the director of the Festival’s program for children.
In 2013, she was appointed the executive producer of the Celebration of Croatia’s Entry into the European Union by the Government of the Republic of Croatia. She has been the president of the Croatian Association “Osor Musical Evenings” since 2017 as well as the executive producer of the national festival Osor Musical Evenings. As an active participant in the international cultural scene, she served as the Croatian delegate of the International Society for Contemporary Music, and was also an elected member of its Executive Board (2012-2013).
Prominent collaborations include those with the European Festival Association (EFA), Croatian Foundation Kultura nova and other parties and organizations on the national and international music and cultural scene. She is writing critical reviews and is currently a permanent associate of the website. She is employed at the Croatian Composers’ Society.