The Opatija Festival and the Development of Popular Music in Yugoslavia (1958–1962) Cover Image

Opatijski festival i razvoj zabavne glazbe u Jugoslaviji (1958. – 1962.)
The Opatija Festival and the Development of Popular Music in Yugoslavia (1958–1962)

Author(s): Anita Buhin
Subject(s): Cultural history, Music, Post-War period (1950 - 1989)
Published by: Hrvatski institut za povijest
Keywords: the Opatija Festival; pop music; cultural policy; popular culture;

Summary/Abstract: The Opatija Festival was founded in 1958, nearly a decade after soft and entertaining cultural genres had been socially-open and ideologically accepted. The problem of creating the perfect prototype of melody and the text of a popular song was not easy to solve, so popular music had been struggling for more than a decadewith same issues as in the beginning. The analysis of cultural and theoretical assumptions, preoccupations and attitudes towards the official cultural policy is the key to understand the popularity of pop music in the Yugoslav socialist society. Starting from the regular broadcast on radio stations, by establishing numerous festivals of pop music, this genre reached its peak. Furthermore the Opatija Festival has functioned as an all Yugoslav and transnational festival, thus gaining the most attention, especially since with passage of time pop music gets an international importance, at least as a suitable representative of the Yugoslav society abroad. A mini-jubilee, i.e. the marking of the 5th anniversary of the Festival in 1962, has served for this purpose to analyse the achievements in the entertainment and music plan, but also to perceive the problems which would befall the future festivals, primarily the Adriatic Melodies in Split. The dominance of “sea themes” in pop music during the 1960s and later was ultimately the result of a number of attempts by composers and songwriters at the first editions of the Opatija Festivals.Therefore, one can conclude that pop music in the early 1960s finally gained its specific form which successfully represented the pulse of the modern society, and that was the collective cultural discovery of the sea.

  • Issue Year: 48/2016
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 139-159
  • Page Count: 21
  • Language: Croatian