Serbs lose powerful music chief, 55

Serbs lose powerful music chief, 55


norman lebrecht

September 29, 2021

The pianist Ivan Tasovac, formative Director of the Belgrade Philharmonic and former Serbian Minister of Culture, died today at 55, apparently of a heart attack. He had previously undergone cancer surgery.

A pianist and television personality, Tasovac was the driving force behind the new Belgrade Concert Hall, enlisting Zubin Mehta to convince the Serbian government.

The conductor Daniel Raiskin writes:

I am profoundly shocked and heartbroken after learning today about untimely passing of Ivan Tasovac…
It is hard to imagine a person filled with life, passion, vision and a real sense of purpose the way Ivan was.
A true and natural leader, he was a great friend and a uniting force on so many levels.
And his unrivaled sense of humor could light up the darkest place at once…


  • Jonathan Sutherland says:

    Maestro Raiskin is absolutely right.
    Ivan Tasovac was a larger than life figure and a towering personality in not only the Serbian musical scene but throughout the Balkans.
    A pianist, politician, orchestra administrator, TV celebrity and cultural guru he was the quintessential polymath. I recently heard him narrate The Soldier’s Tale in Belgrade in a translation he wrote himself.
    One hopes that a fitting tribute to his extraordinary legacy would be to name the new Belgrade Concert Hall after him.