True stars don’t schedule individual concerts, they schedule series of concerts. And that’s exactly what Eurovision 2008 singer Jelena Tomasevic did earlier this month as she sold out not one, but two concerts at Sava Centar, one of the biggest music venues in Belgrade. The two concerts mark her biggest performances to date, proving she’s a talent who is here to stay.
Jelena, who always gives her all to her fans, made sure that her second concert included several differences to the first.
The 33-year-old was joined on stage by her former mentor Zeljko Joksimovic, one of the biggest Eurovision stars of this century. The two sang Zeljko’s hit “Ima nesto u tom sto me neces” — watch the performance here — and received standing ovations from the audience. They get it.
Other guests included pop singers Emina Jahovic, Mari Mari and Sasa Kovacevic, flautist Bora Dugic and Jelena’s brother Darko.
Apart from these duets, Jelena reprised her biggest hits including “Radio svira za nas”, “Ime moje” and “Kosava”, as well as her Eurovision 2008 entry “Oro” and her NF 2005 entry “Jutro”. Her fire burns bright and we are loving the heat!
Who were Jelena’s guests?
Emina Jahovic, one of the biggest pop stars in the Balkans, has a number of hits under her diamond-encrusted belt. In 2002, she took part in Bosnia and Herzegovina’s national final with a song composed by Dino Merlin — the country’s Eurovision 1999 and 2011 singer. She later took part in the Serbian NF in 2010.
Mari Mari — real name Marija Maric — competed in the Serbian NF twice, in 2004 and 2006. She also took part in 2003, but sadly the country did not compete at Eurovision that year.
Sasa Kovacevic is currently one of the biggest male pop stars in the former Yugoslavia. In recent years, his name has constantly come up as a potential representative of Serbia at the ESC.
Bora Dugic is a renowned musician and flautist. He featured in Jelena’s ESC 2008 entry “Oro” and performed with her in the Grand Final.
How Zeljko shaped Jelena’s career
Two-time Eurovision veteran and X Factor Adria star Zeljko Joksimovic discovered Jelena in 2004 when she took part in Serbia and Montenegro’s NF with the song “Kad vise ne bude tvoje ljubavi”. Having spotted her talent, he signed her to his label Minacord in 2005.
That year Jelena competed in Serbia and Montenegro’s NF with Zeljko’s composition “Jutro”. It was the crucial point in her career. Although she did not win, she became well-known to a wider Balkan audience. In 2008, Jelena won the NF with “Oro”, another song composed by Zeljko, and placed sixth at that year’s Eurovision. Her debut album Panta rei was produced almost exclusively by Zeljko.
Although the two of them have not collaborated that much in recent years, Jelena has not forgotten what Zeljko did for her career and remains grateful to him. His appearance at her biggest solo concert to date shows just how strong their relationship remains.
Zeljko competed at Eurovision twice, for Serbia and Montenegro in 2004 and for Serbia in 2012. He finished second on his first attempt and third on his follow-up. Apart from “Oro”, Zeljko also composed Bosnia’s 2006 entry “Lejla”, which placed sixth, and Montenegro’s 2015 entry “Adio”, which placed 13th.
As if his Eurovision musical resume was not impressive enough, Zeljko also hosted Eurovision 2008 in Belgrade along with his now-wife Jovana Jankovic.