Kornelije Kovač

Last updated
Kornelije "Bata" Kovač
Kornelije Kovac.jpg
Kovač promoting Festival Omladina in October 2011.
Background information
Birth nameKovács Kornél
Born (1942-01-01) 1 January 1942 (age 78)
Niš, German-occupied Serbia
Genres Progressive rock, symphonic rock, jazz-rock, classical
Occupation(s) Musician, songwriter, composer, producer
Instruments Keyboards, organ, piano
Years active1961 present
Labels PGP-RTB, Casa Ricordi, Philips Records, Jugoton, Komuna Belgrade, PGP RTS, ITMM
Associated acts Indexi, Korni Grupa, Zdravko Čolić, Bisera Veletanlić, Riblja Čorba, Bajaga i Instruktori

Kornelije "Bata" Kovač (pronounced  [kɔ̌rne̞ːlije̞ bǎːta kɔ̂v̞atʃ] ; Serbian Cyrillic : Корнелије Ковач, Hungarian : Kovács Kornél; born 1 January 1942) is a Serbian composer.


Early life

Born in Niš during World War II in the Nazi-occupied Serbia to a Hungarian father and a Serbian mother, Kovač grew up in a prominent artistic family - his grandfather was a conductor, his father a music professor and a violinist, his mother a singer in the opera choir.[ citation needed ]

Kovač received his early music education at the College of Music in Subotica, after which he attempted to enroll in the Belgrade Music Academy. He didn't pass the entrance exam so he entered the Sarajevo Music Academy of University of Sarajevo where he graduated from the Theory And Piano Department.[ citation needed ]


A composer, pianist, keyboard player, producer and arranger, Kovač's career as a professional musician started in 1961, when he formed his first band, BKB, which became a prominent jazz trio at the time. In 1963 they entered The Yu Jazz Festival, that took place in Bled (Slovenia).

After conducting the various orchestras in Bosnia, he finally joined Sarajevo's most popular pop band Indeksi. With them he had a two-month-long tour in Russia. In 1968, he moved to the Yugoslav capital, Belgrade, where he founded Korni Grupa. As a composer and a musician, he won many music contests that took place in former Yugoslavia. With Korni Grupa he entered following music festivals in Europe:

In 1979, Kovač moved to England where he collaborated in various projects, such as: the 1980 Reading Rock Festival as the keyboardist of the Jenny Darren Band. Among the prominent British musicians with whom Kovač worked while in the UK, included:

Recent projects

Kovač has written music for theatre, movies and television. Like the composer of pop and rock music he has been greatly successful. His songs were released on numerous LP-s in Yugoslavia, Spain, France, the United States, the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Norway etc. Many of them were Golden or Platinum Records. Since 1979, he has participated in many projects in Spain, as a producer, composer or arranger.


He was married to Spomenka Stojanović until Spomenka's death with whom he has three daughters: Aleksandra, Kristina (both of whom are also involved with music) and Anja.

On 19 January 2011, Serbian broadcaster RTS announced that Kovač and his two daughters, Aleksandra and Kristina, will each compose a song and present a singer, who is representing Serbia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2011. [1]

Related Research Articles

Music of Serbia has a variety of traditional music, which is part of the wider Balkan tradition, with its own distinctive sound and characteristics.

Zdravko Čolić singer from Bosnia and Herzegovina

Zdravko Čolić is a pop singer from Bosnia and Herzegovina, widely considered as one of the greatest vocalists and cultural icons of former Yugoslavia. Dubbed the 'Tom Jones' of the Balkans he has garnered notoriety in Southeastern Europe for his emotionally expressive tenor voice, fluent stage presence and numerous critically and commercially acclaimed albums and singles.

Serbian rock is the rock music scene of Serbia. During the 1960s, 1970s and the 1980s, while Serbia was a constituent republic of Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Serbian rock scene was a part of the SFR Yugoslav rock scene.

Bajaga i Instruktori

Bajaga i Instruktori are a Serbian and former Yugoslav rock band. Founded in Belgrade in 1984 by composer, lyricist and guitarist Momčilo Bajagić "Bajaga", the group possesses a rich discography and a plethora of hit songs that placed them at the top of the former Yugoslav rock scene, alongside other mega-selling bands such as Bijelo Dugme and Riblja Čorba.


Ambasadori were a Yugoslav schlager pop band from Sarajevo, SR Bosnia-Herzegovina, SFR Yugoslavia active from 1968 until 1980.


Galija is a Serbian and former Yugoslav rock band from Niš.

Aleksandra Kovač

Aleksandra Kovač is a Serbian singer-songwriter. She is the eldest daughter of eminent composer Kornelije Kovač and the elder sister of singer Kristina Kovač. Alongside her sister Kristina, Kovač came to media prominence as a part of girl group K2, and then launched a successful solo career in 2001. She won a Best Adriatic Act Award at the MTV Europe Music Awards 2006.She was one of the judges on the second series of X Factor Adria

YU Grupa

YU Grupa is a Serbian rock band. A pioneer in combining rock music with the elements of the traditional music of the Balkans, YU Grupa is credited with being the longest-lasting Serbian rock band.

Popular music in Yugoslavia includes the pop and rock music of the former SFR Yugoslavia, including all their genres and subgenres. The scene included the constituent republics: SR Slovenia, SR Croatia, SR Bosnia and Herzegovina, SR Montenegro, SR Macedonia and SR Serbia and its subunits: SAP Vojvodina and SAP Kosovo. The pop and rock scene was a part of the general Music of Yugoslavia, which also included folk, classical music, jazz etc. Within Yugoslavia and internationally, the phrases ex-YU or ex-Yugoslav Pop and Rock both formally and informally always refers to the SFRY period only, not including Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (1992–2003).

Kristina Kovač

Kristina Kovač is a Serbian singer and composer. She became famous during the 1990s when she and her sister Aleksandra Kovač were a big attraction in Serbia and surrounding countries – R&B band K2. She got back in the spotlight in 2007, thanks to her hit-single "Kolena" which spent more than 15 weeks at No. 1 on Serbian pop-rock charts and also entered MTV Adria Top 20.

K2 was a Serbian pop, R&B, funk and dance duo, formed by sisters Aleksandra and Kristina Kovač in 1990. They worked with many producers worldwide and released five albums. After eight years, the band finished its work in 1998. Aleksandra and Kristina started their solo careers.

Srđan Šaper

Srđan Šaper is a founder of I&F McCann Grupa. He is also well known as a founder and a member of the Yugoslav new wave band Idoli in the 1980s.

Korni Grupa

Korni Grupa was a Yugoslav rock band from Belgrade, also known as the Kornelyans, the name which they used during a short-lived foray into the international market. Formed in 1968, Korni Grupa was one of the first Yugoslav rock bands to achieve major mainstream popularity, and the first Yugoslav supergroup. Korni Grupa is considered to be one of the most prominent and influential bands in the history of rock music in Yugoslavia.

Slađana Milošević

Aleksandra "Slađana" Milošević Hagadone, better known as Slađana Milošević, pronounced [slǎdʑana milǒːʃeʋitɕ], is a Serbian singer-songwriter, composer, record producer, and writer. During the early 1980s, she was one of the leading new wave vocalists in SFR Yugoslavia.

Slobodan "Bodo" Kovačević was one of the greatest rock guitarists in former Yugoslavia, with unprecedented virtuosity even to these days. He began his musical career in early sixties with the Sarajevo band "Wanderers" and few years later in the mid sixties joined "Indexi", where Davorin Popović was already a singer.

Nina Radojičić

Danica Prodanović, is a Serbian Doctor of Pharmacy, researcher and part-time singer, known by her nickname Nina.

Dušan Prelević Serbian musician and journalist

Dušan Prelević "Prele" was a Serbian singer, journalist, and writer.

Rockovnik is a forty-episode documentary aired on Radio Television of Serbia in 2011, written by Sandra Rančić and Dušan Vesić and directed by Vesić. The series focuses on the history of former Yugoslav rock scene from its beginnings in the late 1950s until the year 2000. The name of the show is a bilingual pun based on the words "rock" and "rokovnik".

Serbian pop is the pop music scene of Serbia. During the 1940s, 1950s 1960s, 1970s and the 1980s, while Serbia was a constituent republic of Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Serbian pop scene was a part of the SFR Yugoslav pop scene.

Serbia participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019. The Serbian broadcaster Radio Television of Serbia (RTS) organised and had held the national final Beovizija 2019 in order to select the Serbian entry for the 2019 contest to be held in Tel Aviv, Israel.


  1. Jiandani, Sanjay (19 January 2011). "Serbia: Kovac family to compose entry". EscToday.com. Retrieved 19 November 2015.