with Baba Mim....
Check out my other websites too:
Not Retired From Learning! http://www.notretiredfromlearning.com
Bizic Education Enterprises.
"The Power of Three"--> www.mimbizic.com
And the Moon Township Historical Society website:
Thirty years! 30! Thirty years Nikola Jovic has devoted his life to teaching others Serbian Folklore and the most intricate of dance steps, helping to keep his beloved Serbian Orthodox culture and heritage alive, helping all of us. He certainly has worked his magic as an Unofficial Serbian Ambassador throughout the USA and Canada!
His Church Folklore groups have included groups from all over the Eastern American seaboard---the USA AND Canada! Lackawanna, NY, Hamilton, Ont, Niagara Falls, Ont Youngstown, Ohio, Cleveland, Ohio, Akron, Ohio, Monroeville, Pa, Youngwood, Pa, Pittsburgh, Pa, St. Petersburg, Florida, Edmonton, Alberta, Sudbury, Ont.
Nikola also taught at our SHADELAND CHURCH CAMP DURING FOLKLORE WEEK FOR 20 YEARS, using his vacation time from work to "Pay it Forward!"
Anyone who has seen the Shadeland performances or has been lucky enough to witness them elsewhere, knows that Nikola has certainly left his mark on many communities who have witnessed some of the most incredible performances. The audiences are usually so impressed, they rise to give thunderous applause and a standing ovation to both the performers and their instructor(s). Nikola, wife Nada says, has NEVER said "No" to any group who asked for help and was always proud to share his knowledge with others.
Nikola and his dance groups have traveled extensively throughout the USA and Canada to cities like: Buffalo,NY, Lackawanna, NY, Youngstown, Ohio, Cleveland, Ohio, Akron, Ohio, Pittsburgh, Pa, Steelton, Pa., Elizabeth, New Jersey, Chicago, Ill, Milwaukee, Wisc., Schererville, & Merrillville, Indiana, Detroit, Michigan, Phoenix, Arizona, San Diego, California, Windsor, Ont, Kitchener/Waterloo, Ont, Hamilton, Ont, Oakville, Ont, Missisauga, Ont, Toronto, Ont, Sudbury, Ont, Ottawa, Ont, Sherbrook, Quebec and of course Niagara Falls, Ont.
Everyone needs to start somewhere! Nikola learned from the best! He participated in many folklore dance workshops that were conducted by many renowned famous directors and choreographers,:
Mr. Atanas Kolarovski of Tanec Ensemble of Yugoslavia
Mr. Bora Gajicki of “Ensemble Kolo” from Beograd.
Mr. Vladeta Vlahovic of Beograd State Folk Ensemble
Mr. Bozidar Travica past member of Beograd State Ensemble
Mr. Dragan Kovacevic past member of Ensemble Kolo from Beograd, Serbia
But Nikola was wise enough to know that he must ALSO pass this knowledge on, and so, of the 1000+ students that he taught, he always made sure throughout the years that he included a student from his oldest group as his assistant throughout the school year. He enjoyed sharing his knowledge and at the same time was training future instructors for the next generation to come!!! Marianne Kovljenic, Dijana (Tadic) Manojlovic, Milan Zakula, Zoran Matijevic, Tomislava (Stojsavljevich) Andjelic, Jovan Madjercic, Katarina(Pantelic) Maniatis, Dr. Branko Bojovic & Miso Gostimir
Today, Nikola sees many students who are second generation---children of past students!
(These two LOVE their Serbian heritage!)
Thanks to his wonderful Nada for this info!
"On a hot summer day a ‘PROUD SERBIAN BABY BOY” is born on June 22, 1957 in Niagara Falls, Ont Canada. Proud parents +Mirko & +Zora Rose Jovic.
Nikola is the 7th of 10 children.
In 1960…Due to lack of work at Niagara Hydro, the Jovic family moves to Lackawanna, NY with the assistance of long time friend +Very Rev. Miodrag Djurich.
8 kids born in Niagara Falls, Ont Canada…2 born in Lackawanna, NY… USA
(in Canada…Ana, Mary, +Joey, Vladimir, Olga, Milan, Nikola, Milorad…..in USA…Dusan, Jovanka (affectionately known as Seka)
Nikola joined St. Stephen’s Tammies in Lackawanna, NY in 1966 at the age of 8. +Nada Milosevich taught Music Theory in preparation for playing tambura.
At the same time he was dancing folklore with Kathy (Djurich) Sljegovich and Monica Damjanovic as his instructors.
After finishing music theory in 1968 Nikola graduated to Brac with +Stanko Djurich & +Stevan Vranjes. At the same time he continued dancing Jr. folklore under the direction of Jane Sheehaud.
After seven years, he left the instrumental group and remained a member of dance under the direction of Dennis Piatkowski.
In 1974 Nikola answered the call of becoming a member of St. Stephen’s Choir “Kosta Manojlovic” which he still remains a member. In 1976 the “Kosta Choir” was getting ready to travel throughout Yugoslavia. In preparation for their journey +Nada Milosevich invited Mr. Atanas Kolarovski (renown director/choreography from Tanec Macedonian Ensemble from Yugoslavia) to teach a dance workshop to the newly formed Kosta Dancers.
He took the liberty of teaching a dance representing each region of Yugoslavia that the choir was to visit & perform.
After Atanas returned to Macedonia, +Mr. Zifko Andreff continued to instruct the Kosta Dancers.
1977 the trip took place. This trip was a very memorable travel for all members. Many high-lights of this trip were singing in the SABORNA CRKVA & having an audience with the +Patriarch German, visiting many famous monasteries STUDENICA, PEC, ZICA, DECANI, ST. MARK CATHEDRAL IN BEOGRAD , OPLENAC & many local churches through-out their visit and performing on stage alongside Ensemble “KOLO” in Beograd.
After returning home from this unforgettable trip Nikola continued dancing under the St. Stephen’s Tammies & singing with “Kosta Choir”. The dance bug bit him again that he also became a member of Goce Delcev Macedonian Dance Group of Lackawanna, NY which +Mr. Zifko Andreff was director/choreography.
+Mr. Andreff became an inspiration & mentor to Nikola which lead Nikola to teach Folklore. In 1980 Nikola received a phone call from his friend +Mr. Nikola Bogdanovic from St. George Church Niagara Falls, Ont that there was a dance workshop being held in Niagara Falls, Ont by the renown director/choreographer Mr. Bora Gajicki of “Ensemble Kolo” from Beograd.
WELL…Nikola jumped to this opportunity to study folklore dance with such a famous, professional choreographer!!! When it rains it pours…the same time Nikola received a call from +Mr. George Terzieff to join the Balkan dancers of Buffalo State. +George was the director/choreographer of this group which performed dances from the Balkan region of Europe.
Nikola, Nada and her brother Mickeyand sister-in-law Millie in front of St. Sava's Church in Cleveland, OH.
Ziveo, i na mnogaja Ljeta!
Nikola Jovich and Nicole Belich (Pittsburgh gal!). They were a dynamite team of Instructors at Shadeland's Forklore Week for many, many years! Always put on incredible programs that made your heart soar higher than any Fireworks put on by the Zambelli Fireworks company! They got the kids enthused and always taught them to be their best!
Stella Banks said: "They taught us to Serbian dance and sing with pride and always give our best."
AND, they DID!!!! Thank you, Nikola and Nicole!
From ALL of US!!
Check out the video above! :-)
Nikola Jovic & Shelly Phillips Vranjes were approached to teach the St. Stephens Tammies.They accepted with great inthusiasim & joy.Taking this upon themselves, they did not realize that they would both continue teaching for many years to come.Shelley remains to this day the director/choreographer of the Tammies along with her sister Stacey Delmont.Nikola & Kosta choir travel to Cleveland, Ohio to be guests at the Njegos choir concert weekend.That weekend he meets me!!!Our sudbina is starting without us even realizing!!!!.
In 1983 the Jovic family mourn the loss of their beloved mother after a lengthy illness and 5 months later the loss of their oldest brother +Joey in a tragic accident.
In 1984 Nikola moves back to Canada after the passing of this mother & brother.Upon moving to Canada he is approached by Mrs. Mima Ivosevic and asked to teach the St. Nicholas Cathedral Dance Group on Nash Rd. in Hamilton, Ont. He accepted the position and started teaching in 1985.This was a huge challenge for him with approx. 80 students ranging in age from 5-18. Through the years the membership was as high as 150 dancers. With so many students 6 groups are formed.RASTKO, OBILIC, KARADJORDJE, NJEGOS, MORAVA, and AVALA.Proto Stevo Stojsavljevich was the parish priest on Nash Rd. He would often come and greet the children at many rehearsals and state to our Serbian youth on how important it was to respect the Orthodox Church & the holy days of our church calendar. Whenever the groups traveled to be guests at other Serbian communities, Proto Stevo would emphasize that they were the Ambassadors of our SERBIAN community.
Eager to expand his reparatory, Nikola invites Shelley (Phillips) Vranjes & +Zifko Andreff to conduct a dance workshop to his young dancers.The following year +George Terzieff accepts the invite to conduct a workshop and share his knowledge of folklore.
+Bishop Christopher & +Zorka Check (Eastern Region KSS President) called Nikola to teach dance during folklore week at St. Sava Camp in Shadeland, PA.Continued teaching folklore with many talented music directors such as:Kathy Loncar, +Nick Zatezlo, Martha Kukich, Vuk Kandic, Demitrija Lazich, Nicole Belich.With these talented Serbs together with Nikola each camp season they compiled a weeks worth of music & dance to entertain the people in attendance at the last day of camp.Later, Bishop Mitrophan becomes the Bishop of the Eastern Diocese & Nikola continues receiving offers to teach at folklore week at our beloved camp.Some of the directors/camp mothers during this time were:+Olga Galagaza, Daniella Milanovich, Millie Radovick, Martha Springborn, Vesna Meinert, and Dee Dee Baskot.
+Nikola Bogdanovic & Nikola Jovic traveled to NYC to meet the dance troop BELGRADE STATE ENSEMBLE and to make arrangements for yet another dance workshop in collaboration with George Lukic (Director of Kolo from Sv. Nikola of Hamilton Barton Street). The workshop was held at McMaster University with Mr. Vladeta Vlahovac as the instructor.He was the Renown DIRECTOR/ CHOREGRAPHY of the famous BELGRADE STATE ENSEMBLE.
WEDDING BELLS RING!!!!!
Married October 14, 1989 on the feast day PROTECTION OF THE THEOTOKOS at St. Stephens Serbian Orthodox Church by parish priest Proto Rastko Trbuhovich, Proto Stevo Stojsavljevich of Hamilton, Ont & +Proto Slobodan Zivadinovich long-time family friend to both the bride & groom. Nada (Patijarevich) Jovic moves from Cleveland, Ohio to Hamilton, Ont. Not only does she marry Nikola but also accepts the life of folklore with the man that swept her off her feet!!! At our wedding 12 of the members of Avala folklore of Hamilton were part of our wedding party wearing Sumadija Nosinje. In addition we had a total of 40 in our bridal party!!! As a gift to us the Avala folklore group performs for us at our reception & welcomed Nada with open arms!!!
No sooner we get back from our honeymoon, we are off to another folklore workshop held at Buffalo State University. Mr. Bozidar Travica (former member of Belgrade State Ensemble) was the instructor of the workshop. A close friendship develops between Nikola & Nada & Bozidar.
Mrs. Mary Paich & Very Rev. Dragoljub Malich invite Nikola to teach the Monroeville Tammies a new dance set to be performed at their spring concert 1991. Monroeville Tammies of St. Nicholas Church.
Invited by Rev. Miodrag Popovic from St. Sava SOC of Edmonton, Alberta to become director/choreographer of OPANAK Folklore Group which Nikola accepts.
HISTORY WAS MADE AT 3 DAY WEEKEND IN PITTSBURGH, PA
+Bob Stone invites Avala Folklore of Hamilton to be the entertainment for the weekend. They became the first CANADIAN DANCE GROUP to perform for the weekend celebration but ALSO the first dance group to perform ALL THREE DAYS!!!! Kennywood, Majestic boat cruise & castle Shannon!!!!
Nikola established a new folklore group in Hamilton (St. Nicholas Cathedral ..Nash Rd) called Czar Lazarwhich consisted of former Avala Members who were university & career oriented members over the age of 21.Their first performance was at the opening ceremonies at the World University Games held in Buffalo, NY.
Nikola was invited to conduct a dance workshop in Sudbury, Ont at St. Peter & Paul Serbian Orthodox Church.Proto Milan Savic was parish priest at the time.
1994Nikola & Nada move from Stoney Creek, Ont to Niagara Falls, Ont.
Fr. Milos Milovanovic, parish priest from St. George SOC of Niagara Falls, Ont offers Nikola a position as Choreographer/ Director of the STUDENICA FOLKLORE.Nikola once again.ACCEPTS!!!With much enthusiasm former dancers of the St. George community approach Nikola with interest in forming an adult dance group which became known as ENSEMBLE STUDENICA. This group consisted of dancers 18 years of age and older from Niagara Falls, Ont but also from the neighboring Serbian communities of Hamilton, Ont & Lackawanna, NY.Not only does he have is day job but now he is teaching in the evenings at both Hamilton & Niagara Falls.
Nikola attends a folklore dance workshop sponsored by the SNF which was instructed by Mr. Dragan Kovacevic former member ofKOLO (Beograd, Serbia) & at the time Serbian Choreographer for Duquesne University.
+ Proto Janko Rajlich along with Mrs. Ann Milkovich contacted Nikola & asked him to teach the AVALA TAMBURITZANS of Holy Trinity Church in Youngstown, Ohio. For 2 months, Nikola traveled every weekend & prepared the group for their annual spring concert. That same year, Fr. Stevo Zaremba parish priest from Holy Ascension SOC of Youngwood, PA asked Nikola to conduct a dance workshop for the parish youth.
Fr. Dejan Obradovic becomes parish priest at St. George SOC and serves his first Divine Liturgy in Canada on January 2nd which coincidently is the Jovic family Krsna Slava ( Sv. Ignjatije Bogonosac). Folklore membership grew immensely. Fr. Dejan suggested that we rename our groups in keeping with the monastery themes Decani, Hilandar & Studenica.
A little overwhelmed with time Nikola with a heavy heart decides to stop teaching in Niagara Falls and continue to teach in Hamilton. He concluded his 22 years with Hamilton in 2007. That same year, Mr. Dusan Kolundzich (church president in Niagara Falls) approaches Nikola to come back & teach here at St. George. WELL, NIKOLA ONCE AGAIN CAN NOT SAY NO AND WITH A BIG HEART ACCEPTS.
After being approached by former dancers from Niagara Falls & neighboring communities, Nikola forms yet another adult dance group consisting of formers dancers ranging in age from 19-33 years of age. These members consisted of university students and many held professional careers. Keeping with the church theme.this group is named VRACAR!!!
In the fall of 2009, Nikola is contacted by Jedinstvo Folklore Group President Patty Opacic &Director/ Choreographer Milana Capuzzi from Holy Trinity Cathedral of Pittsburgh, PA to be guest instructor for a 3 day weekend folklore workshop held at Shadeland Camp. He also returns to Pittsburgh 2 more times that season to conclude his teachings. In May 2011 Jedinstvo held their annual Folklore Concert with Folklore groups HILANDAR, STUDENICA & VRACAR OF Niagara Falls as honored guests!!! Proto Rajko Kosic is parish priest.
Nikola is contacted by long time friends Proto Stevo & Protinica Svetlana Zaremba & by Folklore President Rajka Rakovic to teach the Folklore Group Srpski Biser of St. Sava Church in St. Petersburgh, Florida. Nikola traveled 1-2 weekends a month in order to prepare the group for their annual concert held in February 2011. The honored guest dance group for this event was St. George SOC Folklore group Vracar from Niagara Falls, Ont Canada of which Nikola is the choreographer/director.
30 year anniversary for Nikola teaching SERBIAN FOLKLORE!!!
Nikola has been our Serbian maestro, sharing his happy self, sprinkling his magical PIXIE dust all up and down the Eastern Seaboard of the Americas! Ziveo, Nikola!
No one deserves to be honored more than Nikola in this area for what he has been able to accomplish with the BIGNESS, kindness of his heart!