About the Marie Kraja and the Competition

While I was in Tirana for the 2011 Marie Kraja International Singing Competition, I had the opportunity to meet with Mr. Zhani Ciko, the General Director of the Albanian National Opera. He gave me a beautiful book with many photographs about the life and career of Marie Kraja, one of Albania’s foremost opera singers. I was moved by her Message for the Young and Message for Young Singers. 

By Marie Kraja

"My message for the young is, in the first place, spiritual. Art is a discipline that requires a great moral force, perseverance, self-control, clarity and a spirit of sacrifice. It educates loyalty and respect for your colleague, boundless friendships and love for the people of your country who you represent. Everyone can be considered an artist in his job, given he does it conscientiously and lovingly. But those who create, being it art, science or any other walk of life, are true artists, because they benefit the society. Everyone has its own value in the society, but someone has put it that an artist experiences an immense dream of love for everyone. I say that each of you can become worthy if you are guided by the love for your fellowman.”

By Marie Kraja

"To the young singers, I recommend the repertoire that suits them, not the one which produces immediate effect. Both the national and world literature have an enormous wealth of musical values of many centuries. Make good use of the artistic legacy of the past, don’t imitate. Consider the way of understanding the music and find your natural way of expression. The role demands a detailed historic, literary and musical study. Any character, which is a complex and many-faceted one, represents its own world. There is no end to the study of a character, and that is the reason for so many diversified interpretations of the same character. Any actor highlights and adds values and views to the character."