Biljana "Bilja" Krstić

(Niš, 9 th November, 1955), studied in the Vojislav Vučković Music School in Niš and then at Belgrade University. After graduation she began a pop career singing with the cult bands Suncokret and Rani Mraz. In 1983 she cut her first album followed by three more pop-oriented records. After a highly successful career in pop music, Bilja Krstić turned to the recorded material she was patiently collecting - obscure folk songs from the territories of Kosovo, southern Serbia, Macedonia, the Vlach district in east Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary. The music presented by Bilja Krstić and the Bistrik Orchestra is fusion, a blend of traditional ethno music, a-cappella songs and ethno grooves with elements of improvisation and modern music. She has given more than one hundred and seventy concerts across the world and in her home country and received international acclaim as the only female vocal performer from the Mediterranean, in the Mostra Sesc de Artes Festival in São Paulo in 2005. She was then a member of the Mediterranean Orchestra, formed by twenty five top musicians from around the world. She has released seven albums and written scores for the films Savior and Zona Zamfirova. Her most famous albums are Bistrik (2001), Zapisi (2003) and Tarpoš (2006).