08 April 2010

'Roma Queen' Esma Redzepova receives Macedonia's Order of Merit

I would like everyone to see Macedonia through my eyes, because my vision is cosmopolitan. Let this small, but beautiful country live for all times, said singer Esma Redzepova-Teodosievska, who was decorated Tuesday by President Gjorge Ivanov with Order of Merit for Macedonia, an award long overdue.
"Through her authenticity and perfect vocal performance, Esma has promoted Macedonian and Roma music worldwide, becoming a striking international name in music", said President Ivanov. According to him, the order is presented to Redzepova-Teodosievska for the affirmation of Macedonia, her musical grandeur and charity work. "Today's ceremony is held only two days prior to April 8-World Roma Day.
The Roma community is an integral part of Macedonian society. Esma is one of the leading individuals in the efforts for improvement of the social and economic situation of Roma. Esma is an example of toppling barriers when it comes to talent, will and perseverance", stressed Ivanov.
Dubbed by many as 'Roma Queen', Esma Redzepova-Teodosievska said the order belonged to the people, because she would not have achieved the success if it hadn't been for them. "This is a recognition for all citizens, all nationalities living in the Republic of Macedonia", she added.
Esma Redzepova-Teodosievska (1943) was born in Skopje. She won the first award at a Radio Skopje singing contest at the age of 11. Afterwards, she began to work with the orchestra of Stevo Teodosievski, performing for nearly 30 years.
Following their marriage, Esma and Stevo raised 47 children and held more than 2,000 humanitarian concerts. Esma and Teodosievski ensemble released 108 singles, 20 albums, 15 CDs etc. At the 1976 inaugural edition of "Festival of Roma Music and Song" in Chandigarh, India, she was officially proclaimed queen of Roma music. She is a laureate of a number of other awards and recognitions.

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