AKLAPELA – A festival of the best Croatian klapas (vocal groups) that nourish the authentic klapa singing, a festival named by a pun of the words klapa and a cappella.
The songs at Aklapela festival are performed without instrumental accompaniment, and with little or no help of amplifiers, in the same way, or a way similar to the authentic one of performing Croatian traditional klapa song. The traditional klapa song did not evolve in concerts and for concerts, but concert performances are one of the ways to share the entire beauty of klapa singing with as many admirers as possible. A narrow street, a tavern, a small street, and a traditional sailing ship are the only things missing to complete the authenticity.
Unlike other numerous established music festivals that are successfully held in Dubrovnik, Aklapela is an entirely national musical product and, with visionary artistic leadership, has the potential to become a referent value of Croatian ethno-music. Organizers are proud that the initiative to start this kind of festival of klapa songs came from Dubrovnik. Authors and performers that made an enormous contribution to cherishing inheritance and developing the authentic klapa song stemmed from the area of Dubrovnik.
Dubrovnik is said to be the most internationally recognized Croatian city, with rich civilization heritage, and it has been the most effective insight into the world of Croatian culture for centuries. Other than with first-rate performances of chosen klapas, Dubrovnik will help to successfully promote the klapa song with its name and international acclaim.
Maestro Joško Ćaleta, who joined this project with love and honesty, took upon himself the demanding role of an artistic director and the festival’s selector gave to the whole project a serious musical support and credibility.
Aklapela Festival is traditionally set in the weekend after the Easter, in Croatia called Little Easter as this is the periods when klapas are not tired from singing in the season and they had plenty of time to prepare for singing during the lent period when they are not performing.
The project started in 2012 with the wish to become traditional Festival in Dubrvonik.