Esma Redžepova

~ Person

Wikipedia

Esma Redžepova-Teodosievska (Macedonian: Есма Реџепова-Теодосиевска Macedonian pronunciation: [ˈɛsma rɛˈdʒɛpɔva tɛɔˈdɔsiɛvska]) (born 8 August 1943) is a Macedonian vocalist, songwriter, and humanitarian of Romani ethnicity. Because of her prolific repertoire, which includes hundreds of songs, and because of her contribution to Roma culture and its promotion, she is nicknamed Queen of the Gypsies.

She started to sing while she was a teenager in the 1950s, and her career spans over five decades. Her musical success is closely linked to her marriage with Stevo Teodosievski, who was a composer, arranger and director of a musical ensemble, the Ansambl Teodosievski. He wrote many of her songs and fully managed her career until his death in 1997. Her musical style is mostly inspired by traditional Roma and Macedonian music. Some other influences are also noticeable, such as pop music. Esma Redžepova started her career at a period when Romani music was very denigrated in Yugoslavia and Roma people considered it shameful for women to sing in public. Redžepova was one of the first singers to sing in Romani language on radio and television.

Redžepova is particularly noted for her powerful and emotional voice. In 2010, she was cited among the 50 great voices in the world by NPR, a prominent American media organization. Redžepova is also noted for her extravagant attires and her turbans, as well as the use she makes of typical stereotypes about Roma women, such as sensuality and happiness. In 2010, she was awarded the Macedonian Order of Merit, and she was entitled National Artist of the Republic of Macedonia in 2013 by the Macedonian President, Gjorgje Ivanov.

With her late husband Stevo Teodosievski she has fostered forty-seven children, and has received numerous accolades for her humanitarian work. She supports Roma and women rights and is also involved in local politics in her hometown, Skopje.

Redžepova, together with Vlatko Lozanoski, represented Macedonia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2013 in Malmö, Sweden.

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Discography

Album

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1994 Songs of a Macedonian Gypsy Esma Redžepova 1
1998 Esma Queen of the Gypsies: Macedonian Songs Esma Redžepova 1
2007 Gypsy Carpet Esma Redžepova 1
2007 Mon histoire Esma Redžepova & Ensemble Teodosievski 1
Chaje Shukarije Esma Redžepova 1
Nasvalji So Uljom Esma Redžepova 1

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