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On Saturday April 7th 2018 Marina left the earthly dimensions. In silence she remains connected alive forever with everybody.


Pianist Hilda Horak, of Polish descent, gave birth to her daughter Marina on November 1st 1944 in Ljubljana, a fortnight after her husband and Marina's father, Macedonian underground freedom fighter Konstantin Domazetović was killed by the Gestapo.


For Marina music was part of natural environment, just like air and water. Already her grandfather Gustav Horak studied violoncello and conducting with such famous teachers as Julius Klengl and Arthur Nikisch in Leipzig and later played in the tsar's orchestra in St. Petersburg for a while.


Marina's customary lullaby when still a baby was Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata, played by her mummy. The eminent concert artist and pedagogue Hilda Horak, professor at the Academy of Music in Ljubljana, studied in Leipzig with Robert Teichmüller and then with the world renowned Margit Varro in Budapest. She later became her assistant in Zürich. Here Marina's mother also took her diploma (piano with Eduard Ruefenacht, theoretical subjects with Dr. Willi Schuh). M. Varro subsequently invited her to join her in the USA and continue as her assistant.


Composer and pianist Marijan Lipovšek expressed the following thoughts in December 1964, after Marina's graduation: "Ever since her childhood, I considered Marina Horak as extremely gifted. Had her parents wanted to, they could have easily shown her off as a child prodigy, so very early did she develop her exceptional abilities. However, a sober, deliberate and expert education enabled her to develop in a natural, healthy way, without harmful digressions and directed her towards a methodical and gradual growth of her knowledge, helping her to enlarge both the indispensable general in the strictly professional horizons".


And so Marina started to learn piano at the Central Music School in Ljubljana only at the age of seven. Yet at the age of nine she made her debut with orchestra in the Great Philharmonic Hall, premiering a work written specially for her by Pavel Šivic.


Two years later, she started attending the Classical Grammar School parallel to her music education. In 1963 she did her A levels (high school graduation) with excellent results.


In 1957 she enrolled at the Intermediate Music School and received her diploma with highest grade on May 5th 1961, giving a recital at the Great Philharmonic Hall in Ljubljana.


The same year she was admitted to the Academy of Music, in the class of Prof. Hilda Horak. Although the study course is of a four-year duration, she graduated with honours after three years, on October 26th 1964, again by giving a public recital at the Great Philharmonic Hall and was awarded the Prešeren Student Prize in February 1965. Soon afterwards, she was soloist in the Piano Concerto by L.M.Škerjanc at the Gala Concert of the Academy of Music at the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the liberation.


In the same year, she was also given the German State Scholarship DAAD and went to study at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik in Munich, where she passed the Künstlerisches Staatsexamen (Artistic State Exam) with the highest grade in 1968.


While still in Munich, she decided to study harpsichord alongside piano (Prof. Hedwig Bilgram) and then continued in Paris at the Schola Cantorum with Huguette Dreyfus. She took her "diplome en virtuosite"  with the grade "maximum" in June 1969.


Between 1968 and 1970 she specialized piano with Nadia Boulanger, and was further counselled by the French-Hungarian pianist Livia Rev. In the following year she studied with Germaine Mounier at the Ecole normale de musique, and formally concluded her studies in June 1971 by obtaining the "licence de concert".


However it was Peter Feuchtwanger in London who gave Marina's playing that special stamp. Later on she was his assitant at master-classes in Switzerland and England.  Important impulses in her development were further contributed by Ranko Filjak, Christian Larde, Yvonne Lefebure, Catherine Collard, Ilona Kabos, Hephzibah Menuhin, Yvonne Loriod, Claude Helffer, Maria Curzio and James Gibb, who in master-classes and in private consultations stimulated her artistic strivings and quests. Many composers were highly appreciative of her performances of their works, among them Ton de Leeuw, Janez Matičič, Marijan Lipovšek, Ilja Bergh, Klaus Schedl, Gunnar Germeten, Paul Hayes, Pawlu Grech...
She was a prize-winner at


  • the International Competition "Claude Debussy" (St.Germain-en-Laye, France), 1969
  • the National Yugoslav Competition of Young Artists (Zagreb, now Croatia) 1969
  • the International competition "G.B.Viotti" (Vercelli, Italy), 1970
  • the International competition for contemporary Music (La Rochelle, France), 1973


Together with Norwegian pianist Hakon Austbo she gained Third Prize in piano duo at the International ARD Competition (German National Radio, München, Germany) in 1974. Special acknowledgement were the award of JRT (Yugoslav National Radio and Television) for best recordings of the year (Belgrade 1966) and the selection for the concert series "Podium jonge kunstenaars" (Stage of young artists) of the  Gaudeamus Foundation (Utrecht 1976).


Prizes paved the way onto European concert stages and opened the doors to broadcasting studios from Oslo to Madrid, from Reykjavik to Skopje. She performed in recitals, as soloist with orchestra, in piano duo and in chamber music all over Slovenia and in all important centres of former Yugoslavia. She was heard in Belgrade, Skopje, Sarajevo, Zagreb, Novi Sad, Osijek, Rijeka, Zadar, Šibenik...  she travelled Europe extensively as well as other parts of the world and appeared in


  • Australia: Sydney, Melbourne
  • Austria: Graz, Klagenfurt
  • Belgium: Brussels, Antwerp, Eupen
  • Brunei: Bandar Seri Begawan
  • China: Shanghai
  • Denmark: Copenhagen, Naestved
  • France: Paris, Angers, Tours, Aix-en-Provence
  • Germany: Köln, München, Bonn, Schloss Gracht, Wattenscheid, Königshofen, Dortmund, Hamburg, Hannover, Heidelberg
  • Great Britain: London, Swansea, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Havant, Hastings, Penrith, Harlaxton, Blackpool, Stratford
  • Hong-Kong
  • Iceland: Reykjavik
  • India: Calcutta, Delhi, Poona, Goa, Bombay
  • Italy: Rome, Trieste, Faenza, Siena, Udine, Andria, Torino
  • Malaysia: Kuching, Sibu, Miri
  • Netherlands: Amsterdam, Amstelveen, Den Haag, Utrecht, Son en Breugel, Nijmegen, Tilburg, Vlaardingen, Sparrendam, Ammersfoort, Hilversum
  • New Zealand: Wellington, Tokoroa, Hamilton
  • Norway: Oslo, Bergen, Kristiansand, Stavanger, Flekkefjord, Trondheim, Lillehammer, Finnmark (Vadso, Tana, Kirkenes, Hammerfest, Havoysund, Alta, Hasvik), Elverum, Modum Bad, Asker, Hovikodden, Trysil, Tromso
  • Singapore
  • Spain: Madrid, Palma de Mallorca, Cervera
  • Sweden: Lund, Arboga, Malmö
  • Switzerland:  Bern, Basel, Zurich, Lausanne, Langenthal, Langnau, Aarau, Lenzburg, Olten, Zofingen, Meiringen, Rapperswil, Horgen, Stein, Davos

... and the list is by no means complete!


She was also invited to perform at festivals:


  • Dubrovnik Summer Festival, Croatia
  • Ljubljana Summer Festival, Slovenia
  • Summer in Ljubljana old town, Slovenia
  • Musical Evenings of Sarajevo, Bosnia
  • Festival de musique sacree, Paris, France
  • Summer Festival Klosters, Switzerland
  • Copenhagen Summer Festival, Denmark
  • Bergen Festspillene, Norway
  • Oslo Summer Festival, Norway
  • Festival Tibor Varga, Sion, Switzerland
  • Feuchtwanger Festival, Bonn, Germany
  • Festival ad majorem artem, Auch, France
  • Festival d'Estiu, Cervera, Cataluna, Spain
  • Chopin-Festival 1999, München; Germany
  • Terra Magica Music Festival, Vrsar, Croatia
  • Music Summer Poreč, Croatia
  • Festival Groblje, Slovenia
  • Festival internazionale "Incontri con la Musica" Torino, Italy
  • Festivale Schubert, Udine, Italy
  • Young artist under Vitranc, Kranjska gora, Slovenia
  • Hvar Summer Festival, Croatia, where she is a welcome guest and performed eight times since 1994


She was also a regular guest of broadcasting houses RTV Ljubljana, NRK Oslo and several of the Dutch radios in Hilversum (KRO, NOS, AVRO, VARA...). France-Culture in Paris invited her for public broadcast recitals. In Germany she could be heard on radio waves of NDR Hannover, Saarländischer Rundfunk, Bayerischer Rundfunk (München), Hessischer Rundfunk (Frankfurt), in Switzerland via the stations Deutsche Schweiz Bern, Suisse Romande Lausanne and Svizzera Italiana Lugano. She also recorded for ORTF Paris, ORF Klagenfurt, RTV Skopje, RTB-Beograd, RT-Novi Sad, RTB Brussels, BRT Eupen, RAI Trieste, RTE Madrid, Radio Island, Danmarks Radio, ABC Melbourne, NZBC Wellington, Radio Hong-Kong and Radio Singapore.


Her music broadcasts were shown on national television RTV Slovenija and NRK Oslo, as well as RT Sarajevo,  Bayerischer Rundfunk, RTBeograd, AVRO Hilversum NOS Hilversum and Channel A Sydney.


Discography includes:


  • A miniature harpsichord recital (Bach, Händel, Couperin, Mozart), MK, Ljubljana
  • Robert Schumann (Papillons, Nachtstücke, Kreisleriana), Pavane-Records, Brussels, 1980
  • Slovene Piano Sonatas (Škerjanc, Lipovšek, Šivic, Matičič), Gallus Carniolus, Ljubljana, 1998
  • The Unknown Chopin (Sonata Op. 4, Polish Songs Op. 74 - with soprano Pija Brodnik), ZKP-RT Slovenija, 1999



Marina is a cultured person with a wide horizon, which reflects, among other things, in the fact that she speaks fluently nine languages: Slovene, English, German, French, Croatian, Italian, Dutch, Norwegian and Spanish. This enables her to move in international artistic circles with complete ease.


She lived in Germany, France, the Netherlands and England. In August 2001 she returned to Slovenia. Marina is professor at the Academy of Music in Ljubljana.