VICE PREMIER ON MUSIC IDOL?
Macedonia’s Vice Premier Ivica Bocevski showed off his singing skills on the most popular Bulgarian music talent contest during his official visit to the neighboring country.
Accompanied by his Bulgarian counterpart, Gergana Hristova Grancharova, Bocevski was a special guest on the Music Idol show, the Bulgarian version of the hit British television show Pop Idol.
Starting from this year, the show also airs on Macedonia's national channel A1 TV, with two contestants from Macedonia competing in the finals for the best singer award.
At a lunch with the competitors on Wednesday, Bocevski, who is in charge of European affairs, joined the two Macedonians, Aleksandar Tarabunov and Boban Stojkov, in singing the folk song Parahodot, which is popular in both countries.
“The language of diplomacy is best when spoken trough music,” Bocevski stated, adding that the record breaking ratings of the show in both countries is a good example of how the two neighboring nations should nourish their good relations.
Despite its popularity, the show sparked controversy in Macedonia as some suspect it has an hidden agenda to portray the country as part of a greater Bulgaria. Despite the international character of the show, they ask why only Macedonia is included alongside the host country.
Officially, Sofia was among the first to recognise the existence of Macedonia as a state in the early 1990s but has failed to recognise the Macedonian nation or language as separate from Bulgarian. This has cast a shadow on the otherwise good relations between the two nations.