The country and the Balkans remember Toshe Proeski, music star who died in a car crash 13 years ago on his way to Zagreb, Croatia.
Marathon runners are running in honor of Proeski and will lay flowers in Krushevo and Nova Gradishka, respectively.
The 13th anniversary of Proeski’s death will be commemorated during the day near the newly built memorial at his resting place in Gumenje near his birthplace Krushevo, which the government funded with 10 million denars.
The Toshe Proeski Memorial House in Krushevo is open for visitors in line with public health guidelines. Around 700 items are displayed as part of its permanent collection, which is updated yearly on his birthday, Jan. 25. Since its opening in 2011, the museum has had more than 650,000 visitors. According to museum management, one third of them were foreign visitors, mostly from the Balkan countries.
Toshe Proeski (1981-2007) gave his first performance when he was 11, at the Golden Nightingale children’s song festival, where he sang in the Vlach language. He began his music career after winning first place at Prilep’s Melfest festival in 1997. He later performed at many regional festivals, and was the Republic of Macedonia’s Eurosong entry in 2004. That year he also became a UNICEF goodwill ambassador.
Over his 10-year career, Proeski released seven albums. Besides Macedonian, he recorded songs in Serbian, Bosnian, Croatian, Slovenian, and Italian.
His last album was released in the Balkans two weeks before his death. An English-language album he had been working on, “The Hardest Thing,” was released posthumously.
He held his last concert, with proceeds going to Macedonian schools, at the City Stadium.