by Jenna Sprattler,The Pointer
Reverberating sounds of a guitar were all that could be heard in Michelsen Hall Tuesday evening, as Petar Jankovic plucked at his six-string.
Stories were communicated from the artist to his audience through expressive renditions from a handful of the greatest musical masterpieces ever written.
The classical guitarist, a native of Yugoslovia, began his musical career at the age of seven. He doesn’t remember exactly what prompted his desire to play, just that he was born to do so.
Eventually, Jankovic developed his art at the Music Academy in Belgrade. Afterward, he continued his education, earning a master’s degree from Indiana University School of Music, where he stayed and launched a teaching career.
A wide range of styles were evident throughout the hour that he played. The majority of classical guitar music stems from South America and Spain, he said.
“I play all styles with classical guitar,” Jankovic said. “I prefer to play from romantic and contemporary periods.”
He feels the most inspired while performing on a concert stage and is content with practicing in any area, from hotel rooms to office spaces or wherever there are “the least distractions you can have.”
His technique was flawless, and he played with great ease. The staccatos, scale runs and vibrato action added to his sensational narrative performance.
Brock Wojtalewicz, an English as a second language instructor, brought twelve of his students to the performance. He wanted to introduce them to something out of the ordinary.
“It was quite amazing,” he said. “I was truly impressed.”
Jankovic has acquired numerous prestigious awards throughout his career and is known all over the world for his beautiful art.
The preludes of Heitor Villa-Lobos and the tangos of Astor Piazzolla were played. The “Libra Sonatine” by Roland Dyens had been written for the composer’s heart surgeon with each movement representing the emotions had before, during and after surgery, explained Jankovic before he gave his artistic interpretation.
“It’s really wonderful that we have artists of this caliber coming to UW-SP,” Wojtalewicz said. “I think our community is really fortunate.”