The composer singer and flutist Tamara Obrovac from the Croatian city of Pula is one of the most impressive artists on the Croatian music scene, and in the past few years she has become very popular due to the influence of the Istrian folk music that has been the creative force of her works.
Istria is a beautiful Croatian region, a North Adriatic peninsula, particular for It's musical and dialectal tradition. She writes lyrics in a local dialect and sings in an ancient dialect which is not spoken any more - the Istriotic dialect. In addition to her international concert activities, she composes music for theatre and film, and she has received many awards for her work.
Her international TransHistria ensemble and her Quartet incorporates elements of jazz, Istrian and Mediterranean national music, and many elements of modern music skilfully and naturally, and her utterly original and autochthonous music goes beyond time and geographical boundaries, thus becoming a universal artistic message which establishes Tamara Obrovac as an exceptional artist who has created her own unique musical expression."
This creative musician has become known for her highly aesthetic performances; her interpretations are suffused with spontaneity, inventive improvisation, freedom, humour and the ability to communicate with the audience, while Tamara's voice is equally impressive when she sings lyrics and when she improvises thus turning itself into an additional instrument.
International recognition came also through the nomination for the BBC Radio 3 World music Awards 2004 (European Music and Audience Award).
Here is what John L. Walters, Guardian, 20/02/2004 said while browsing the Double CD with all the nominees songs:
"Fortunately, the random nature of awards compilation like this provides the opportunity to browse and skip and fall headlong for something you've never heard before. In my case, the "blind date" artist is Tamara Obrovac. Cansoneita (A Small Song) performed by Obrovac with the Transhistria Ensemble, is a floating, beguiling track, with spacious drumming, tuneful accordion and a delicious lead vocal by Obrovac."
She published 8 author CDs: "Triade", 1996; "Ulika", 1998; "Transhistria", 2001; "Sve pasiva"/"Everything fades away", 2003; "Daleko je"/"Is faraway", 2005; "Neću više jazz kantati"/"I won't sing jazz any more", 2009, "Madirosa", 2011, in colaboration with string quartet Epoque, and "Ulika revival" 2014, with reinterpretatiions of the compositions from CD "Ulika", dedicated to her grandmother.
Through her albums, Tamara profiles her own auctorial approach and creates a unique artistic form which, inspired by the Istrian and broader Mediterranean tradition, establishes "the personal poetics of the author".
- International Small Scene Theatre Festival professional jurry award for best music in the theatre show “Ljudi od voska”, performed by the Zagreb National Theatre (Rijeka, Croatia) 2017.
- Croatian Composers Society award "Miroslav Sedak Benčić", 2015., for best jazz author
- professional jurry award for best score for short film "Contrada", director Matija Debeljuh, Croatian film days 2013.
- Porin (Croatian national music award) for best world music album for CD "Madirosa" 2012.
- Porin (Croatian national music award) for best female vocal performance, the song "Tango and cha cha cha, CD "Madirosa" 2012.
- 42nd PIF – International Puppet Theater Festival, The International Professional Jury Award for the music in the theatre show “Svarožić”, performed by the Zagreb Puppet Theatre (Zagreb, Croatia) 2009.
- Runjić’s evenings, Golden Seagull Award for the best remake of Runjić’s song “A vitar puše” was given to Tamara Obrovac and Matija Dedić, Split 2009.
- “Mali Marulić”, Croatian Children’s drama festival, Award for the music in the theatre show “Regoč” by Ivana Brlić Mažuranić, performed by Zadar Puppet Theatre, 2008.
- President of the Republic of Croatia awarded here with the Order medal Danica Croatia, for achievments in the culture, 2009.
- Award for best drama for its music at the festival Regoč Croatian drama for children 2008.
- Porin (Croatian national music award) for best female vocal performance of 2008.
- best music in a theatrical work for the play "Zagrljenici", 6th festival of Bosnian and Herzegovinian drama, Zenica 2007.
- best music in a theatrical work for the play "Zagrljenici", National theatrical festival Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2007.
- Golden Arena award (Croatian national film festival, Pula): best score for Hrvoje Hribars film “Što je muskarac bez brkova (What is a man without a mustache)” 2006.
- Porin (Croatian national music award) for best vocal collaboration with Tedi Spalato, for song "Ti i ja", 2006.
- Porin (Croatian national music award) for best female vocal performance, song "Daleko je..." / CD "Daleko je.. is faraway"2006.
- Porin: (Croatian national music award) best world music album, for CD "Daleko je.. is faraway"2006.
- Award for best music in a theatrical work for play "Antigona" @ Marulovi dani, Split 2005.
- Nominated for BBC Radio 3 Awards for World Music (European music and audience award categories), 2004.
- Zlatna koogla award for best croatian female artist 2003.
- Porin (Croatian national music award) fpr best world music album, CD "Sve pasiva/All fades away" 2004.
- The "Golden smile" award: best music and performance for the play "Jelka kod Ivanovih (Christmas at the Ivanov's)" (ZKM) 2003.
- The Croatian national theatrical award: best music in a theatrical work for the play "Tanac od mrtvih(dance of the dead)" (INK) 2002.