Sandra's role in the teaching team is to research different Croatian folkloric dances and regions and to liaise with international choreographers. She also provides teaching support during the Junior, Intermediate and Adult Group dance practice. Through her research of Croatian Folkloric dances, music and costumes, Sandra continually brings new ideas to our choreographies and performances and steers the group creatively. She first joined Mladi Hrvati in 1986 and now has three daughters dancing in the Junior and Intermediate groups.
Maya teaches and creates choreographies for the Junior, Intermediate and Adult Groups, and is a member of our tamburica orchestra. She is originally from Canberra where she danced for local folkloric group HFS Croatia. She comes from a family with an extensive musical background and spent much of her youth singing in Canberra choir 'Gaudeamus', as well as being a classically trained pianist. Maya researches different Croatian folkloric dances and regions alongside Sandra, and is responsible for the overall teaching and coordination of dance and music for our groups. She has introduced community orientated events such as the Youth and Families Mass and Annual Christmas Concert and is responsible for the teaching and creative direction of these events. Her two young daughters are proud dancers of the Junior group.
One of Antun's great passions is Croatian folkoric dance. He first started dancing at the age of seven and has since spent time learning dance both in Australia and in Croatia, where he attended Hrvatska Matica Iseljenika. Antun provides teaching support to Maya and Sandra during dance practice, and in recent years, he has joined our tamburica orchestra as a kontra player and is enjoying learning about the tamburica and music.
Klara is originally from Wollongong where she spent her youth dancing for local folkloric group HFS Zagreb. Klara is an accomplished musician who has a Bachelor of Music and has been trained in various instruments. She has toured Europe as part of the Wollongong Youth Orchestra. Klara teaches our music theory classes for tamburica students, as well as transcribing and arranging music for the group. Klara is also a progressive singer/songwriter who has recently released her own albums. You will find her performing her own music at hotspots all around Melbourne.
Stjepan grew up in a musical family where he watched his father play in various Croatian bands across Melbourne. His own music journey began when he started learning classical piano, and from there his interests grew and moved onto the electric bass and guitar. In the early 90s, Stjepan began playing the bugarija and eventually joined his father in playing with Croatian bands. In 2003, Stjepan took on the roll of bass player in Nocna Smjena, a tamburica band which was the first of its kind in Australia. Since this time, he has learnt and played the many other instruments of the tamburica family. He has also taken up tamburica repairs and set-up as a hobby in his spare time.
He has a deep love and passion for traditional Croatian instruments and through his work with Mladi Hrvati, he hopes to share his passion and knowledge of these instruments to our community and future generations.