ABOUT THE DREAMING OF DREAMS
At your age, not so young but not so old either, is that need for reexamination real: Who am I? What am I? How much have I done? Can I do more? Do you wake in the morning with such questions?
STEFANOVSKI: No. I am not dissatisfied. I am not frustrated with what I have been doing. I think I have done a lot. I have recorded numerous records, played on numerous concerts, achieved many collaborations… realized many different projects with various orchestras, various musicians… significant musicians, great names. As a man from Skopje, from Macedonia, I feel pretty content with what is behind me. Regarding what awaits me, I will persist in the things in which I would need to persist as long as God gives me strength, enthusiasm, motivation and health. A while ago, I was talking to a very good friend about what it would be good to do. Something I have not done by now. An album for children. And I will do that in the near future.
Through the years, you have always managed to tell a different story. You are probably the only one who thought in advance about what should be developed further. From the collaboration with Miroslav Tadić that started with “Krushevo”, through the meetings with Teodosij Spasov, Gibonni, Akkerman, the violinist Stefan Milenković… big-bands, symphony orchestras… In a conversation about a Belgrade magazine many years ago, when you were working full force on your solo career, I asked you whether you were thinking of leaving or staying in the then disintegrated common state. You told me that you have no intention of leaving so that you could wash dishes somewhere during the day, and play at night, and that you would try to dream your dream here. In Macedonia.
STEFANOVSKI: That is very difficult, and to work in that career here takes a lot of luck, a lot of persistence and a lot of professionalism. A person should learn to communicate with the rest of the world normally. I wake up in the morning, I play the guitar a little bit, and then I respond for a long time to the messages that wait for my response. You cannot be unserious towards the people that have expectations from you. And you have to reply to dates, offers, projects, various offers… You have to be precise in the communication, and this means to be professional. The other thing is – everyone has a lot of options. You can go to a monastery and dedicate yourself to spiritual life. You can go to Las Vegas and spend all your money on slot machines. And you can be somewhere in the middle – between monastery and Las Vegas, where I am. If a person enters a mystic phase, so to say, that means that he took life too seriously. And such serious understanding of life is not good. We are here temporarily, and we all have our burden to bear. A man will go as far as he has been destined to go. He will go on as long as he has the strength to. I have thought of various options. Of isolation, withdrawal… and of large company. Both isolation and a great party – my place is somewhere along those lines. I consume isolation, but I have also been a part of a larger company. In my case, as I understand the world, a man should live in some kind of a dialectic balance between emptiness and fulfillment. Between isolation and large company. I search for the middle ground. I have been tempted in life to go to extremes, but that is not my style. I have found great satisfaction in music. I have found in music such great satisfaction… and cure… and salvation from various situations that I cannot leave it now. There is no need to. I’m still searching for something in it. I’m still searching for some solutions. Music solutions. Emotional. I’m searching for answers to my question. I answer some of them through music. And for others – I will never find an answer.