Roko Radovan (b. 1994) started his music education on his home island of Korčula and continued it in Dubrovnik, where he finished secondary music school, majoring in trumpet performance. At the beginning of his career as a singer he became a laureate of the Russian Romance Competition in Ljubljana, Slovenia (2016), which was followed by the first prize in the Vera Kovač Vitkai International Singing Competition in Novi Sad, Serbia (2016), three first prizes in the Lav Mirski International Competition in Osijek (2016, 2018, 2019) and two first prizes in the Croatian Music and Dance Teachers Association’s regional and national competitions (2017, 2019).
In the first year of his studies, he performed in a student production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, directed by Giorgio Surian. He also performed the complete Schumann’s song cycle Dichterliebe in concert. He concluded his first year performing with the Croatian Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Robert Farkas at the opening of the Zagreb Classic Festival. Afterwards he performed as a soloist in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Zagreb Academy of Music Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Mladen Tarbuk at the Lisinski Hall in Zagreb. He first performed with maestro Tomislav Fačini and the Croatian Radio and Television Choir in 2019, at the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Vijenac magazine at the Croatian Music Institute, and then on several more occasions the same and the following year. He also collaborated with the Antiphonus Ensemble and the Karlovac Chamber Orchestra.
In 2020 he was invited to audition at the Vienna State Opera. He was also invited to make his debut with the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, conducted by Ivo Lipanović at the Lisinski Hall, but the performance was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. His final performance in 2020 was with the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra conducted by Ivan Hut as part of the Christmas concert cycle. This summer he will perform in concert at the opening of the International Opera Arias Festival Tino Pattiera, once again with the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra and maestro Ivan Hut at the Rector’s Palace in Dubrovnik. In November 2021 he will appear in the role of Boxer in Igor Kuljerić’s opera Animal Farm on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Zagreb Academy of Music. In 2021 he was granted two complete scholarships to attend the Oper Oder-Spree and the Lotte Lehmann summer academies in Germany.
Roko is the leader of several award-winning traditional vocal ensembles (klapa), which have altogether won around 20 awards. He also writes and composes traditional vocal music, which was twice featured on albums awarded with the Porin Award. In 2018 he won the Drago Ivanišević Award for his poetry. In 2021 he composed a half-hour cycle of 13 songs for voice and piano entitled Ko što stare pjesme poje (As the old songs say), set to his own lyrics and performed as part of his final singing exam. He arranged the first four songs for voice and the ARioSo Piano Trio and they were premiered at the Blagoje Bersa Hall in Zagreb.
He has collaborated with conductors such as Veton Marevci, Holger Speck, Marc Tardue and Christoph Campestrini, and attended seminars by the renowned singers Krešimir Stražanac and Mihailo Arsenski.
He is currently a third year student of singing under Martina Gojčeta Silić at the Zagreb Academy of Music.