Tag Archives: Cronnexion Entertainment & Events

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CROATIAN SINGING SENSATION GREETED BY ENTHUSIASTIC CANADIAN FANS @ NEW YEAR’S GALA

Stunning young soprano Barbara Suhodolčan won lots of new Canadian/Croatian fans when she performed at the Holy Trinity Croatian Catholic Church in Oakville on New Year’s Eve. This marked Ms. Suhodolčan’s Canadian debut but thanks to the overwhelming response from the audience, local promoter Katica Visic of Cronnexion Entertainment is hoping to invite Barbara back to Canada later this year for a mini-tour in Southern Ontario and possibly beyond.  I had the opportunity of speaking with Barbara just before she flew back home to Croatia earlier this week and here’s what she had to say about her experience….

Barbara went on to tell me about upcoming shows, especially one about which she is very excited…

And she is especially proud of her mum and dad for their support and dedication to helping her career. Both accompanied her to Toronto, along with her piano accompanist and another musician.

She is totally delightful to chat with and is most definitely destined for fame in the very near future.  After the interview, Barbara and I had some fun taking photos in her hotel lobby where we found a great big Christmas tree still in tact.20180103_11002720180103_110033To learn more about this lovely, talented artist, you can follow her on Facebook & Instagram, or keep an eye on my blog for news of her (hopefully) return to Canada.  Here’s a recent video of her performing a Victor Herbert classic.

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CROATIA’s CLASSICAL MUSIC SUPERSTAR ANA RUCNER COMING TO LIVING ARTS CTR (Mississauga) SEPT. 27 for 1-NIGHT ONLY CONCERT!

I’m thrilled to announce the upcoming concert for ANA RUCNER, the beautiful and superbly gifted cellist from Croatia, taking place at the Living Arts Centre in Mississauga (just W. of Toronto, Canada) on Sunday September 27th (7:30pm showtime) presented exclusively by Toronto-based Cronnexion Entertainment & Events.
Rucner will perform two sets of contemporary and classical pieces, accompanied by special guests University of Toronto String Quartet, and will also feature videos of her beloved Croatia. Tickets are $55 – $75 and are available from the Living Arts Centre: http://www.livingartscentre.ca/theatre-performances/world-classics-and-croatian-beautiessexy celloOne of the most innovative classical artists to emerge over the past several decades with numerous national and international awards, Rucner is one of Croatia’s most successful performers whose shows are well received all over the world. Her unique style and creative repertoire, a combination of classical, modern and world music make Ana a highly recognizable face of music today far outside her native country. Ana’s solo performances and concerts with symphonic orchestras or piano, in concert halls or sport arenas, have attracted thousands of fans.na pozorniciI had the opportunity to chat online with Ana and ask her about her career, her summer concert tour across Europe and her expectations for the upcoming Canadian date.

What first inspired you to learn cello, and can you tell us about your very first performance?
I was raised in a family of musicians, my mother also plays cello, my father plays viola, as does my brother. Since I was a little girl, I enjoyed beautiful classical music and fell in love with cello. When I was a student, at the age of 17, I started to perform and had different concerts, with some of my friends and also as an honorary member of Maribor Philharmonic Orchestra in Slovenia.

Has your family been supportive and encouraging with your career? And are any other family members who are musicians or artists? I always had and still have enormous support from my family, and they usually give me a lot of very useful advice as they have a lot of musical experience.

Do you have fans already in Canada or will this upcoming concert be your first foray into the North American market?  I have previously visited Canada and enjoyed it so much, especially Niagara Falls. It is really a beautiful country and I’m looking forward to performing on Sept. 27th. I believe among all my FB fans there are many from Canada.
classical celloI gather you’ve spent the summer touring and performing across Europe, can you share any road stories with us? For example: what stages have you played on? What countries or cities, any interesting stories about fans or fellow musicians?  This summer I was very busy, but very proud of all of my various concerts, and some of them were completely new experiences and challenging for me.
My busy summer started with my own Festival in Dubrovnik (5th anniversary) called Ana in Town. We have 5 concerts in four days, with esteemed guests from London like Oliver Poole, and from Italy Luca Lucini and Mario Stefano Pietrodarchi. The last day of the Festival, June 21 was special: at 5am we celebrated the first day of summer together with World Music Day on the top of the hill Srđ, overlooking Dubrovnik (famous as the location of many scenes from Game of Thrones). My mother played cello with me and it was like magic playing and looking at the first sun showing its beautiful golden face. That same day in the evening, there was a concert at Dubrovnik National Theatre where I played with the Symphonic Orchestra from Mostar and we all enjoyed the music from the most popular movies like Schindler’s List, Pirates of the Caribbean, Love Story and many others.

Dubrovnik, pearl of Adriatic

Dubrovnik, pearl of the Adriatic

During the Beck’sperience club tour in July and August, I was performing the latest hits live together with DJ Tom Polo. Our audience was mostly young people and they just loved it. We were touring on the Adriatic coast and had one great concert in the Church of St. Matthew in Bakar, Istria – I always feel special when playing in sacred places.over shoulderI also launched my latest video “Alkar’s Pride” in Sinj, which already has a lot of fans on you tube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2EXiD4uxEWM) . We produced this video during the 300th Anniversary of Sinjska Alka – a very important annual traditional equestrian competition in Sinj, and we believe the video may win several awards.
In cooperation with the Tourist Board of Novigrad in Istria, we launched another video “Habanera”, completely different from all the previous videos, modern and dynamic. I also had the pleasure of introducing my music and videos to several groups of tourists who came to Croatia from all over the World – we work with tour operators who take care of entertainment for their clients’ holidays.svirkaYou are a passionate ambassador for Croatia – how do you find the rest of the world receives artists from Croatia? Do people know about the wealth of talent and cultural heritage that is incorporated into contemporary arts and music?  I love my country and use every opportunity to share my Croatian cultural heritage and music. As I have been honoured to receive several awards for tourist videos of Croatia, some people also call me “ambassador for Croatia” and I find that very flattering. I’ve been fortunate to travel a lot and many people throughout the World already have heard about our beautiful country but when they see also videos they are impressed and grateful for having a chance to see so much beauty. I am also a honorary ambassador of the City of Beijing which is a great honour for me.
Wherever I travel, I’m always warmly greeted; I feel their respect for my music and my country. Some Croatian artists like some actors, singers and artists are very popular Worldwide, and I am happy people appreciate our culture, but they mostly remember our footballers, basketball players, tennis players…anin osmijeh i alkariI’ve viewed a number of your YouTube videos and really enjoy your classical repertoire, but I love it when you add a little “rock star” attitude to your contemporary pieces. How do you mix your classical with contemporary styles that work so well? Do you work with video directors or are these all your own ideas?  Generally all ideas for videos are mine, I enjoy making videos as a part of my creative process, but it would be impossible without the team of top professionals including producers, video directors, directors and other team members. Each video is a result of team work and I am so excited for being able to show some of them to your public in Canada. I love mixing classical with contemporary style – it’s my favourite style – as it is the way I see and feel music.sexy classic cello beachWhat is your latest CD called and what is the theme or genre of music? Can fans purchase online uploads of your music as well as CDs?
Yes, it’s possible to purchase two of my CD’s – Expression and Vječne uspavanke (Lullabies for Babies) from iTunes and Amazon.com.  My latest album, Expression, one of my favourites, offering classical pieces like The Sabre Dance, Moonlight, Bolero, Alla Turca and Ode to Joy but I play them in a style that combines classical with modern music.

Have you recorded or performed with any other stars of classical or contemporary/pop artists that we might know?
Oh yes, and many of them were my guests at this summer’s Festival, including Oliver Poole, a great young British piano player, then two Italian musicians Luca Lucini and Mario Stefano Pietrodarchi – both great artists. A few years ago I had the privilege of playing with Peter Soave, the world famous accordionist & bandoneonist from USA. While playing with Maribor Phylharmonic Orchestra, I had the chance to play with the legendary Lalo Schrifrin who wrote the main theme for the movie Mission Impossible (also famous for the soundtracks or scores from Bullitt, Enter the Dragon, Cool Hand Luke and TV’s Planet of the Apes and Starsky & Hutch) I also collaborated with David Muller, one of the members of famous quartet Il Divo. There were also many performances with famous Croatian musicians, for example rock band Srebrna Krila (Silver Wings) who were the most popular band in the ex-Yugoslavia and they influenced my work as I like their live instruments.

What do you most look forward to about your visit to Toronto?
First of all, I’m looking forward to meeting all of the wonderful people working so hard to bring me to Canada. Then, for me, each concert is a new adventure and experience but I will do my best to give the audience the best concert experience – that is always the greatest reward for me!  On a more personal note, I would like to see Niagara Falls again and try the Edge Walk on top of the CN Tower. So…see you all soon and we will have a great time, I promise!ana rucner

To learn more about Ana Rucner, visit her website and social media:  www.anarucner.com   www.anarucner.com/youtube     www.anarucner.com/facebook

Ana’s concert will be MC’d by Canadian music icon and founding veejay of MuchMusic TV channel, MICHAEL WILLIAMS.

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New Toronto music promoter to introduce Croatian superstar ANA RUCNER Sept. 27th

I’m thrilled to introduce my new client, Katica Visic, founder of Cronnexion Entertainment + Events, who specializes in world-renowned talent from her home country of Croatia.  Katica, or Kathy as she tells her Toronto friends to call her, is already teaching me so much about Zagreb and Dubrovnik (pictured below), and how the cities are vibrant, modern centres for the arts, education and commerce, not just picturesque quaint holiday spots that many of us still assume is the norm.

Dubrovnik, known as the Pearl fo the Adriatic and a World Heritage site.

Dubrovnik, known as the Pearl of the Adriatic, and a World Heritage site.

Zagreb

Zagreb

The new high-tech Zagreb arena for sports and entertainment

The new high-tech Zagreb Arena for sports and entertainment

I recently sat down with Kathy and asked her to share her story about launching her new music promotions company, the Sept. 27th concert with internationally renowned cellist Ana Rucner at Mississauga’s Living Arts Centre, and about her future plans for introducing more talented Croatian artists to Canadian audiences.

What inspired you to bring in cellist Ana Rucner for a single concert in Toronto/Mississauga?
I am a proud Croatian and I enjoy sharing my love for my culture with others, to which my friends and colleagues will attest. The first time I heard Ana play, I was incredibly moved. She put my two loves together – Croatia and music. Her music sums up what it means to be Croatian and coincides with my company’s belief of “Sharing Our Culture with the World”. 

Ana Rucner

Ana Rucner

She may not be known to North American audiences but can you talk about Ana’s fame throughout Croatia and the rest of the world?
Her unique style has taken her all over the world and she has played in over 30 countries. Wherever she plays, she is always invited back. What’s interesting about Ana is her intense passion for the cello and for live performance. In her own words, she’s found an instrument that “breathes with her” and this is seen on stage through her spontaneous and energetic performances.

more cello pinkYou recently formed Cronnexion Entertainment & Events to produce Ana’s show and have plans to bring in other Croatian artists. How challenging has this new business launch been for you?
Although I’ve been involved in organizing concerts for many years, launching my own venture has been an exciting experience filled with steep learning curves. Growing a new business is a difficult and somewhat lonely journey but that being said, I have been given valuable assistance and guidance from numerous established entertainment organizations, a great publicist (I’m blushing) and have learned a lot more about the wonderful and enthusiastic Croatian community here in Toronto.

KATHY VISIC, Founder of Cronnexion Entertainment + Events

KATHY VISIC,  Founder of Cronnexion Entertainment + Events

So you’ve received support from the Ontario Croatian community – can you share some of the people/organizations who are offering assistance?
I’ve received a great deal of support and encouragement from the Croatian National Tourist Board and the Zagreb Tourist Board, as well as from the Croatian Embassy and the Consul General of Croatia in Mississauga.  I’m also very grateful to local Canadian-Croatian businesses and radio stations for their promotional efforts and so many of my friends who are sharing information about Ana’s concert via social media.

With so many summer music festivals and concerts featuring rock, hip-hop and country artists, do you think audiences are ready to embrace Ana’s more classical repertoire, especially with her adding many contemporary pieces played in her “rockstar-like” stage style?
Absolutely! Her repertoire is vast and her energetic stage presence makes it easy to engage audiences with her unique blend of classical, contemporary and world music.

Ana performing LIVE in Croatia

Ana performing LIVE in Croatia

How do we buy tickets for Ana’s concert?
All information plus the link to ticket purchasing is here: https://www.facebook.com/events/358031511056654/

Where can we hear/see Ana perform online prior to her concert in September?
Ana has lots of YouTube videos available online so I encourage everyone to log on and enjoy the music and the videos: www.youtube.com/user/AnaRucner

Coming up over the next 12-18 months, you have other exciting Croatian artists coming into Toronto – can you offer us any hints or tease us with names who these performers may be?
I am communicating with other artists and local venues, but have yet to finalize any dates. All I will say is that these artists are famous in the European pop/club music scene. Also, a full North American tour is being planned for Ana for 2016-17 so please follow me on social media to get the latest news.

How can we follow Cronnexion and Ana?
https://www.facebook.com/cronnexion
https://twitter.com/cronnexion
http://anarucner.com
https://www.facebook.com/ana.rucner?fref=ts
https://twitter.com/anarucner

Thanks to Kathy for inspiring me to research Croatia – here are a few sites that may interest YOU in learning more about this wonderful country:
Croatian National Tourist Board:  http://croatia.hr/en-GB/Homepage
Zagreb Tourist Board:  http://www.zagreb-touristinfo.hr/&lang=en
Croatian Embassy in Ottawa:  http://ca.mvep.hr/en/

Zagreb