Sreten Krstić, violin, concertmeister
Born in 1953 in Belgrade, Krstić began to play the violin at the age of seven.
Later, he studied with Prof. Toškov and Prof. Pavlović at the Faculty of Music, University of Arts, in Belgrade. Having graduated, he worked as Prof. Pavlović’s assistant at the Faculty, while, at the same time, completing his MA degree.
He received numerous first and special prizes at national, as well as international competitions. As an example, he was awarded a second prize for a violin solo and a special prize for the best performance of a Bach composition at the International Competition «Jeunesses Musicales», in 1976, in Belgrade. In 1975 and 1977, as the concertmaster of the World Youth Orchestra, Krstić performed with soloists such as H. Szering and P. Fournier, and conductors J. Martinon and B. Klee. Since 1982, Krstić has been the principal concertmaster of the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, with the great Sergiu Chelibidache as the orchestra’s chief-conductor. Starting in 1999, James Levine held this prestigous position for the next five years, followed by Christian Thielemann from September 2004, and Lorin Maazel from 2012. As a soloist, Krstić performed with famous conductors such as Sergiu Celibidache, Zubin Mehta, James Levine, Hiroshi Wakasugi, Horst Stein, Vaclav Neumann, Dmitrij Kitajenko, Christopher Hogwood, etc., performing Mendelssohn’s, Mozart’s, Wieniawsky’s, Paganini’s, Brahms’s, Vivaldi’s, Bach’s, to mention but a few, violin concertos. He also performed with many of the orchestras in ex-Yugoslavia, such as the Belgrade, Zagreb and Ljubljana Philharmonic Orchestras, respectively, the Macedonian Philharmonic Orchestra, etc. Soloist concerts take him to nearly all of the European countries, as well as to Japan, USA and the ex-USSR. He has founded the strings trio «Gasteig-Trio München» in 1985, and has been its member ever since. Since 1996, his work in chamber music intensified – he founded the strings sextet «Philharmonische Streichsextett», and, in 1999, the «Philharmonische Solisten». In the latter orchestra, Krstić is not only a member but the artistic leader as well. He has also been, for the last fifteen years, the artistic leader of the «Royal St. George String Chamber Orchestra» from Belgrade, as well as a member of the Gelius Piano Trio since 1999. Krstić has made recordings for all the radio and TV-stations in ex-Yugoslavia, Bavarian Radio (BR), West-German Radio (WDR), BBC (Manchester) and Greek Radio (Thessalonica). Also, for companies such as Thorofon and Arte Nova Classics, amongst others, he has recorded a number of CDs, some as a soloist and others in chamber music. From 2007 until 2010, Krstić was the artistic director of the Belgrade Music Festival (BEMUS), one of the oldest and largest festivals for classical music in the region.
Krunoslav Marić, violin
Krunoslav Marić received his primary and secondary education in Rijeka, and graduated from Music Academy of Zagreb in 2007, class of Maja Dešpalj Begović. After graduation, he further studied under Professor Ilya Grubert at Fondazione musicale Santa Cecilia in Portogruaro, Italy. As soloist, he performed with Opera orchestra of HNK Rijeka and Music Academy Symphony orchestra. He received several awards on state competitions.
During his studies at Zagreb, he actively participated in chamber ensembles, recording a compact disc with Academy string quartet with works by A. Webern and J. Š. Slavenski, published by Croatian Music Institute. He has a record of successful performances in Croatia, Slovenia, Italy, Austria and Hungary. He also recorded for HRT and RAI. He was a member of string quartet Porin, and worked with many orchestras in Croatia. Also, he often collaborates with movie composers, and his recordings can be heard in feature films and documentaries.
Smiljan Mrčela, cello
Smiljan Mrčela, born in Zagreb, began to study the cello with prof. Dobrila Berković- Magdalenić at the Elly Bašić Music School. He continued his studies at the Music Academy in Zagreb with prof. Valter Dešpalj, followed by a 2-year postgraduate course at the University Mozarteum in Salzburg with prof. Enrico Bronzi. He has attended numerous seminars with renowned pedagogues (V. Perlin, G. Tavares, B. Greenhouse, C. Bohorquez, R. Latzko, A. Noras…).
He has won first prizes in a number of national and international competitions such as Marcosig competition in Gorizia, Croatian state competition in Varaždin, and Antonio Janigro competition in Poreč. He represented Croatia at the concerts of young talents and laureates in Moscow organized by the Foundation of Vladimir Spivakov. As a member of the Croatian String Quartet he was awarded the Darko Lukić Prize in 2014.
He has made solo appearances with the Zagreb Philharmonic, the Zagreb Soloists, the Croatian Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra, the Croatian National Theatre Orchestra in Split, the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra and the European Youth Orchestra, playing under the direction of conductors such as Pavle Dešpalj, Martin Sieghart, Michal Dworzynski and others. As a soloist and chamber musician he has performed in most European countries and Japan, and has collaborated with artists such as Ilya Grubert, Konstantin Bogino, Monika Leskovar, Sreten Krstić and Yury Revich.
In January 2013 he made his debut at the Golden Hall of the Vienna Musikverein with the Zagreb Philharmonic in Papandopulo’s Concerto for violin and cello.
Smiljan Mrčela is active as a solo cellist of the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra and is member of the Zagreb Soloists.