N_zastava

Embassy of the Republic of Serbia

N_grb

CULTURE AND SPORT

Tradition & Customs
Art
Film
Literature
National clothes
Music
Dance
Sport
Basic Dictionary

Tradition & Customs

nevesta         barili

Traditional costume of Serbian village                                                      Milena Pavlović Barili, Serbian painter

 

Literature

The oldest manuscript book and a monument of Old-Serbian literacy is Miroslav's Gospel (Serbian: Мирославово јеванђеље / Miroslavovo jevandjelje), a 362-page liturgic book written in a transitional form between Old Church Slavic and Serbo-Slavic) between 1180 and 1191. It was written by two monks pupils, Grigorije and probably Varsameleon, on a white parchment paper for Miroslav, the Duke of Zahumlje, brother of King Stefan Nemanja.

Miroslav's Gospel explains the origin of the Cyrillic script, the letters in it are a masterpiece of calligraphy and illustrations are daring and magnificent miniatures, vignettes and initials. For centuries Miroslav's Gospel has been kept in the Hilandar monastery of the Serb Orthodox Church, on Mount Athos, Greece. In 2005 Miroslav's Gospel was entered into UNESCO program Memory of the World.

Medieval Serbian literature was dominated by folk songs and epics passed orally from generation to generation. Historic events, such as the "Battle of Kosovo" (Serbian: Бој на Косову / Boj na Kosovu) in the 14th century play a major role in the development of the Serbian epic poetry. One of the first countries to win independence from the Ottoman Empire, the Serbian independence movement sparked the first works of modern Serbian literature.

Furthermore, Vuk Stefanović Karadžić, a friend of J. W. von Goethe famous, became the first person to collect folk songs and epics and to publish them in a book. Vuk Karadžić is regarded as the premier Serbian philologist, who together with Đuro Daničić played a major role in reforming the modern Serbian language, though in recent times his work has been widely criticized for destroying the ethos of the Serbian language.

                  

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In the 20th century, Serbian literature flourished and a myriad of young and talented writers appeared. Ivo Andrić published The Bridge on the Drina (На Дрини ћуприја / Na Drini ćuprija) in 1945, for which he received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1961 (link to Ivo Andric Foundation). The famous writers also include Miloš Crnjanski, Meša Selimović, Dobrica Ćosić, Borislav Pekić, Milorad Pavić, Danilo Kiš and many others.

 

National clothes

There are several types of national dresses depending on the region of origin.

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Music

Musical composition and performance from the eighteenth century to the present

While music played an important role in the Serbian medieval state (from the twelfth to the fifteenth century), official music died out during the period of Turkish enslavement. The Serbs in Vojvodina (within the borders of the Habsburg empire) once again became involved in European musical trends in the eighteenth century, but they did not forget their traditional roots. The patrons of iconostases, portraits and still life paintings also enjoyed music which set itself apart from oriental models. Even so, little is known about ecclesiastical and secular music of that time.

In the nineteenth century Serbian music developed wherever the Serbs lived, in Serbia and the Austro-Hungarian cities where the Serbs had settled, and there were centres in Belgrade and in towns all over Vojvodina. The music was mostly in the service of patriotic ideas and of the preservation of the nation. Theatre music was fostered in the National Theatre in Novi Sad (founded in 1861) which put on performances for Serbian audiences in towns in Vojvodina and Slavonija, and at the National Theatre in Belgrade (founded in 1868).

Orchestra concerts began in 1842 in Belgrade, and soon after Johann Strauss did a guest performance there with his orchestra, performing his own compositions which had been inspired by the Serbian folk melodies as well, and other foreign artists followed suit. In 1899, the Serbian School of Music was founded.

The Belgrade Philharmonic was founded in 1923. Music teaching was held in two music schools and at the Academy of Music, founded in 1937.
Famous composers and musicians of secular and ecclesiastical national music:

1 Kornelije Stankovic (1831-1865) composer, pianist and director, who also recorded national music

2 Stevan Stojanovic Mokranjac (1856-1914) the central character in Serbian music was, who had been raised on the tradition of Serbian church and folk music. Mokranjac's "Fifteen Song Collections" (1883-1909), an a capella choir composition, based on the folk melodies of Serbia and Old Serbia, and on that of Kosovo, Montenegro, Macedonia and Bosnia, is one of the greatest achievements of Serbian music.

Josif Marinkovic (1851-1931), who was a director of the Belgrade Academic Choir Society called "Obilic". As a superb Romanticist, the author of patriotic choir songs, a choir piece under the influence of folk music and solos of exceptional highly developed melody based on the text of Serbian songs.

Stanislav Binicki (1872-1942) proved his musical abilities as a director and composer. Among his compositions is also the opera Rising Early, in the style of Italian veristic opera and Serbian urban folklore.

Isidor Bajic (1878-1915), proved himself to be a skilled organiser in the musical life of Novi Sad, where he started the "Serbian Music Journal" and a notated edition of the Serbian musical library. He also founded the Music School.

3 Petar Konjovic's (1883-1970) one of the founders of the Academy of Music and the Institute of Musicology in Belgrade. He composed operas inspired by folk music, stylistically close to the work of Leos Janacek. His operas, The Prince of Zeta (1929) and Kostana (1931; performed in Brno in 1932 and in Prague in 1935) were done conceptually as musical dramas.

4 Stevan Hristic (1885-1958) was the director of the Belgrade Philharmonic and the Belgrade Opera. He showed a special inclination for vocal music, composing technically cultivated works in the neo- romanticist, veristic and romanticist-impressionist style, sometimes hued with the folk melodies.

Kosta Manojlovic (1890-1949), the author of modally hued choir pieces who dealt with music history and ethnomusicology.

Dance

The traditional Serbian dance is a circle dance called kolo. It is a collective dance, where a group of people (usually several dozen, at the very least three) hold each other by the hands or around the waist dancing, forming a circle (hence the name), semicircle or spiral.

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There are some famous folklore dance groups, and some of them have already performed in Japan (Kolo, Sanja Marinković, Branko Krsmanović, Abrašević etc)

Sport

The most popular sports in Serbia are football, basketball, volleyball and vaterpolo - group sports in which our national teams have achieved the highest results. On the other hand, sports popular in Japan, such as baseball and golf have scarce number of admirers.

Football
Basketball
Volleyball
Waterpolo
Athletics
Tennis
Shooting

 

Football

1 
The most famous in Japan, among the fooball players from Serbia, is definitely Dragan Stojkovic Piksi. In the spring of 1994 Stojković signed with Japanese J-League team Nagoya Grampus Eight, then managed by Arsène Wenger and featuring Gary Lineker. He spent seven seasons with the Grampus Eight, retiring as a player in 2001. Stojković played 183 matches for the club, scoring 57 times. He was named J-League MVP for the 1995 season. In Japan there is a monument in his honour, a stadium and a street named after him.

Upon retiring, he became the president of the Yugoslav Football Association, and then President of the Red Star Belgrade Football Club (Crvena zvezda Beograd). From February 2008, he is a manager of Nagoya Grampus Eight Football Club, along with his countrymen, Assistant Bosko Djurovski and Milos Bajalica, defender from Red Star Belgrade.

Results

World Cup

1930

Uruguay

Best 4

1962

Chile

4

1990

Italia

5

Olimpics

1948

London

Finalist

1952

Helsinki

1956

Melbourne

1960

Rome

Winner

1984

Los Angeles

3

 

Basketball

2 
Owing to their talents, some number of basketball players plays in the world famous NBA league. For example, Vlade Divac was drafted into the NBA in 1989, and played for the Los Angeles Lakers being one of the first European players to have an impact on the league. He was first traded to the Charlotte Hornets and later signed as a free agent with the Sacramento Kings to 2004 alongside fellow countryman Pedja Stojakovic.

Link to the official web site of  the Baskeball Federation of Serbia

Results

European Championships

1961

Belgrade

2

1963

Wroclaw

3

1965

Moscow

2

1969

Napoli

2

1971

Essen

2

1973

Barcelona

winner

1975

Belgrade

winner

1977

Liege

winner

1979

Torin

3

1981

Prague

2

1987

Athens

3

1989

Zagreb

winner

1991

Roma

winner

1993

Germany

-

1995

Athens

winner

1997

Barcelona

winner

1999

Paris

3

2001

Turkey

winner

World Championships

1963

Rio de Janeiro

2

1967

Montevideo

2

1970

Ljubljana

winner

1974

PuertoRico

2

1978

Manila

winner

1982

Carribean

3

1986

Madrid

3

1990

Buenos Aires

winner

1994

Toronto

-

1998

Athens

winner

2002

Indianapolis

winner

Olimpics

1968

Mexico City

2

1976

Montreal

2

1980

Moscow

winner

1984

Los Angeles

3

1988

Seul

2

1992

Barcelona

-

1996

Atlanta

2

 

Volleyball

3
This sports is becoming increasingly popular in Japan. National Team of Serbia (men and women) had the opportunity to participate in World Championships organized in Japan in 2006.

Link to web site of Volleball Federation of Serbia

Results (men)

Olimpics

1996

Atlanta

3

2000

Sidney

winner

World Championships

1998

Japan

2

European Championships

1975

Belgrade

3

1979

Paris

3

1995

Athens

3

1997

Antwerpen

2

1999

Vienna

3

2001

Ostrava

winner

World League

2002

3

2003

2

2004

3

200

2

World Cup

1996

Tokyo

3

2001

Tokyo

3

2003

Tokyo

3

 

Waterpolo

4 Waterpolo

Maybe this sport is not the most popular in Japan, but our country had achieved some great results in these sport in history. The players as well as coaches have good reputation.

Olimpics

1952

Helsinki

2

1956

Melburn

2

1964

Tokio

2

1968

Mexico

winner

1980

Moscow

2

1984

Los Angeles

winner

1988

Seul

winner

2000

Sidney

3

2004

Athens

2

FINA kup

1979

Belgrade

3

1981

Long Beach

2

1987

Solun

winner

1989

Berlin

winner

1991

Barselona

2

2002

Belgrade

3

2004

Long Beach

2

World Cups

1973

Belgrade

3

1978

West Berlin

3

1986

Madrid

winner

1991

Perth

winner

1998

Perth

3

2001

Fukuoka

2

2003

Barselona

3

European championships

1950

Vienna

3

1954

Torino

2

1958

Budapest

2

1962

Leipzig

2

1966

Holland

3

1970

Barcelona

3

1977

Sweden

2

1974

Vienna

3

1985

Sofia

2

1987

Strasbourg

2

1989

Bon

2

1991

Athens

winner

1997

Siberia

2

2001

Budapest

winner

2003

Kranj

winner

 

Athletics

5 Olivera Jevtić (born July 24th, 1977 in Užice, Serbia) is a Serbian distance runner and is the most succesful in the country. She is based in Užice, Serbia. Olivera's coach is Slavko Kuzmanović and she competes for running club "Mladost". Olivera holds Serbian marathon record of 2:25:23 (Fortis Rotterdam Marathon, 2003).

She won the silver medal in the marathon at the 2006 European Athletics Championships in Gothenburg, and was 4th in International WOmen Marathon in Tokyo, 2006.

Results

Dragutin Topić (1971~) is a Serbian athlete, a World junior record holder with 2.37. He won World Junior Championships 1990, three weeks before his win at European Championships. In high jump won European Indoor 1996 and World University Games 1995, 3rd at European Indoor 1992 and at GP 1994. He has set 5 national records.
 

Tennis

JelenaJ Jelena Janković (Serbian Cyrillic: Јелена Јанковић; born on February 28, 1985 in Belgrade, Serbia) is a Serbian professional tennis player. The first tennis moves Jelena has learned in Tennis Club Red Star. As a nine-and-a-half year old she was introduced to tennis by elder brother and fitness coach Marko and later she was trained at the Tennis Academy of Nick Bollettieri. As a junior she won 2001 Australian Open. From 2001, she started to play on WTA Tour, with her first tournament at Indian Wells Masters, when she reached second round.

She entered the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) top 15 in late 2006, when she reached semi-finals at US Open. At the beginning of 2007, Jelena became top 10 tennis player and currently is World Rank No. 3.

Career Highlights

SINGLES Winner (5): 2007 - Auckland, Charleston, Rome, Birmingham; 2004 - Budapest; 2003 - ITF/Dubai-UAE.
Finalist (8): 2007 - Sydney, 's-Hertogenbosch, Toronto, Beijing; 2006 - Los Angeles; 2005 - Dubai, Birmingham, Seoul.
Semifinalist (16): 2008 - Australian Open, Dubai, Indian Wells; 2007 - Dubai, Doha, Warsaw, Strasbourg, Roland Garros, Los Angeles, Stuttgart; 2006 - Strasbourg, US Open, Beijing, Guangzhou; 2005 - Berlin; 2004 - Linz.

DOUBLES Winner (1): 2006 - Birmingham (w/Li).
Semifinalist (2): 2006 - Guangzhou (w/Li); 2004 - 's-Hertogenbosch (w/Kremer).

MIXED DOUBLES Winner (1): 2007 - Wimbledon (w/J.Murray).

ADDITIONAL Serbian Fed Cup Team, 2001-05, 2007. Serbia and Montengro Olympic Team 2004.

6 Ana Ivanović (Serbian Cyrillic: Ана Ивановић, born November 6, 1987 in Belgrade, Serbia) is a Serbian professional tennis player. She started tennis at the age of five after seeing the sport on TV. She asked her parents to take her to the local tennis school and she was given a small racket as a birthday present from her father shortly after. Her idol is legendary tennis player and fellow Yugoslav Monica Seles, who she says is her main inspiration for wanting to be a tennis player.

Currently, Ana is World No. 2.

anaTOKYO

Career Highlights:

SINGLES Winner (5): 2007 - Berlin, Los Angeles, Luxembourg; 2006 - Montreal; 2005 - Canberra; 2004 - ITF/Mallorca 2-ESP, ITF/Gifu-JPN, ITF/Fukuoka-JPN, ITF/Fano-ITA, ITF/Batumi-GEO. Finalist (3): 2008 - Australian Open; 2007 - Tokyo [Pan Pacific], Roland Garros 2007 Semifinalist: (7): 2008 - Sydney; 2007 - Amelia Island, Wimbledon, Year-End Championships; 2005 - Warsaw, Zurich, Linz. Quarterfinalist (15): 2008 - Dubai; 2007 - Gold Coast, Sydney, Antwerp, s‘Hertogenbosch 2006 - Sydney, Indian Wells, Warsaw, s'Hertogenbosch; Los Angeles; Linz, Hasselt 2005 - Miami, Roland Garros; 2004 - Luxembourg.

DOUBLES Finalist (1): 2006 - 's-Hertogenbosch (w/Kirilenko). Semifinalist (2): 2006 - Tokyo [Pan Pacific], Warsaw (both w/Kirilenko).

Ana Ivanovic has, along with Jelena Jankovic, participated in Toray Pan Pacific Open Tennis Tournament in Tokyo, January 2007 and won the second place. Congratulations, Ana!

novak Novak Đoković (Serbian Cyrillic: Новак Ђоковић, born May 22, 1987 in Belgrade, Serbia) is a professional Serbian tennis player. An up-and-coming player at 19 years of age, Đoković has already proven himself to be an all-court player with an abundance of talent. He participated in the 2006 Hopman Cup with fellow Serbian Player Ana Ivanović where the pairing narrowly missed the final.

He continued his great run in 2006 by shooting up the rankings. In May 2006, various reports appeared in the British media about Novak's mother Dijana reportedly approaching Britain's Lawn Tennis Association about her son joining British tennis ranks and the possibility of their entire 5-person family moving from Serbia to live in Britain. All the rumours didn't affect Đoković's play however. He started 2006 ranked 78th, but with an excellent run to the quarter-finals in Roland Garros and a 4th round at Wimbledon, he found himself in the top 40. Just three weeks after Wimbledon he won his maiden title in Amersfoort without losing a set defeating Nicolas Massu in the final. Đoković won his second career title in Metz and with this victory moved into the top 20 for the first time in his career and as of January 8, 2007, he is ranked number 14 in the world following his third title in Adelaide. Currently, Novak Djokovic is World No. 3.

Career Highlights

SINGLES CAREER TITLES (9): 2006--Amersfoort, Metz; 2007--Adelaide, ATP Masters Series Miami, Estoril, ATP Masters Series Canada, Vienna; 2008--Australian Open, ATP Masters Series Indian Wells FINALIST (3): 2006--Umag; 2007--ATP Masters Series Indian Wells, US Open

DOUBLES FINALIST (1): 2007--Adelaide

Shooting

7Jasna Šekarić (Serbian Cyrillic: Јасна Шекарић, born Brajković/Брајковић) (1965~) is a sport shooter, representing Serbia. She has won one Olympic gold medal and three World Championships in 10 m Air Pistol. In 1992, she lost the Olympic gold despite having the same score as winner Marina Logvinenko.

Šekarić was elected world’s best shooter of the year thrice (1990, 1994 and 2005), and the International Shooting Sport Federation awarded her the title of “Shooter of the Millennium” in 2000. Furthermore she was a three-time world champion (Budapest 1987, Sarajevo 1989, and Milan 1994). Apart from that, she was a four-time European champion in the individual competitions (Espoo 1986; Manchester 1991, Budapest 1992, Budapest 1996, and Belgrade 2005).

Šekarić triumphed six times in the World Cup Finals and won six “Crystal Globes” – one in the sport pistol (1988) and five in the air pistol (1990, 1996, 1997, and 2005). In the 1996 World Cup Finals she first equalled the world record with 392, and then bettered it to 492.7. She won a total numer of 90 medals in major competitions: Olympic Games, European and World Championships, World Cups, and Mediterranean Games.

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Embassy of the Republic of Serbia, 4-7-24 Kitashinagawa, Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo, Japan
tel. +81 (3) 3447-3571, fax +81 (3) 3447-3573
email: embassy@serbianembassy.jp, web site: www.serbianembassy.jp