Dean’s Award for outstanding achievements
Divna Šimatović graduated with great honour from Music Academy in Zagreb in the class of professor Darko Petrinjak. She has received the Dean’s Award for outstanding achievements in the academic year 2014/2015 as well as the scholarship of the City of Zagreb for excellence in studies. She graduated from „Pavao Markovac“ High Music School where she studied with Xhevdet Sahatxhija and the Second Grammar School, both with excellent grades.
In 2018 she passed the audition for the highest possible performance degree – the postgraduate concert diploma (Konzertexamen). She is now studying with prof. Ricardo Gallén at Hochschule für Musik FRANZ LISZT Weimar.
During her studies, she received many prizes in national and international competitions.
In national competitions, she received four first prizes (2007, 2009, 2011, 2015), two second (2013 and 2014) and one third prize (2005). In the Croatian Competition for Young Musicians “Papandopulo” (up to 35 years of age), she was awarded the second prize (2014), and in the “Bistrički zvukolik” she received the first prize (third place, 2018). She won second place in the first Croatian Competition of Music History (Bjelovar, 2011). Furthermore, Divna won first prizes in the following international guitar competitions: Concorso Europeo di Chitarra Classica “Città di Gorizia” (2008), “Mőrski festival kitare“ (2008) and “Andrés Segovia“ (Germany, 2010). She was awarded the third prize in the “Split Guitar Festival” (2008) as well as second prizes in the “Mörski festival kitare“ (2010) and the “Fernando Sor“ competitions (Rome, 2015).
Her first solo concert, accompanied with great critics, was held in 2011 (Zagreb, Matica hrvatska cycle). She gave a recital in the Cycle of Chamber Music (in the organization of the Concert Direction Zagreb) as a winner of a special prize in the “Lions Grand Prix” competition (Rijeka, 2014). She performed in cities throughout Croatia and abroad, and she was also a guest on television and radio shows such as Dobro jutro, Hrvatska, Majstori svirači and Na pragu uspjeha. Last summer she held two solo concerts in Italy (cycles Carniarmonie and Nei Suoni dei Luoghi) and in Croatia – at the Samobor Music Autumns and in the Museum of Arts and Crafts in Zagreb. This year she held solo recitals – as a part of Osijek Music Wednesday (International Festival “Art and Woman”), and the festival Project Ilica: Q’ART as a finalist of the “Papandopulo” competition. She also performed at the concert of the Choir of the Croatian Radiotelevision. This year she held two concerts with guitarist Ivan Šimatović- at the Lisinski Halland at the Old City Hall. With her performance, she accompanied many festivities: Europe Day (European House, 2016), a festivity regarding the organization of the European University Games (2016) and the celebration of Spanish National Day (on an invitation of the Embassy of Spain). Divna also performs in various art manifestations such as the „Duje Balavac” exhibition (Berlin, 2010) under the protection of Ministry of Culture and the mayor of Berlin, the “White Night” festival, exhibitions of sculptor MataCROata and poet evenings with Enes Kišević. Beside numerous performances, Divna plays often and takes part in the organization of charity concerts.
Noumerous guitar workshops
Moreover, Divna attended numerous guitar workshops and studied with Xhevdet Sahatxhija, Lukasz Kuropaczewski, Aniello Desiderio, Zoran Dukić, Petrit Çeku, Brian Head, Goran Listeš, Paolo Pegoraro, Margarita Escarpa, Thomas Offerman, Pia Offerman, Alejandro Córdova and Stefan Schmidt.
She is also a guitar teacher working at the Elly Bašić Music College and from autumn 2018 she teaches at the Academy of Arts and Culture in Osijek as a teaching assistant.