Leskovik is located in the southern part of Albania, at an altitude of 1220 meters, located near the border between Albania and Greece. It has a population of around 4200 inhabitants, and is characterized by a rich musical culture that dates back to the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
People have an impeccable taste for music that comes from a multivocal tradition always accompanied by characteristic musical instruments like bagpipes etc. Later, the songs began to be accompanied by clarinet, violin and flute: they were mostly pastoral melodies and 'tears' sung by women.
The first group was created in Leskovik in the 1922: Vangjel Leskoviku and Asllan Leskoviku were the main singers and performers of the clarinet in the Xabaum kaba music. Vangjel Leskoviku was a music reformer, who aimed at dynamism while playing the clarinet.
The city is the Sazet and Leskovikut '
The city was an important tourist center, where the rich spent their holidays to enjoy the climate and the waters of the Sarantaporos river. Tourism gave splendor to this city, increasing its market network: its merchants, in fact, were famous in all the surrounding areas such as Saranda and Giannina.
One of his greatest riches was his folkloristic and ethnographic tradition. The beauty of Leskovik's songs and dances, such as those of Hafiz and Selim Leskoviku, the virtuoso violinist Miter Jorgo, and the clarinetists Vangjel Janushi and Gaqo Lena, accompanied the lyrical melodies of that province, as they later conquered the scenes of Gjirokastra, Berat and other provinces both in the country and abroad. The famous 'Sazet and Leskovikut' have been an undisputed symbol of the city for a long time.
Furthermore, the city was known for its vineyards - which produced wine and raki - such as those of Postenan, Radove and Chechnya. Another great treasure of the area are the forests that extend from Arreza and continue to Shelegur, Vashen and beyond the Postenan.
This article was originally published in RTSH (Radio Tirana International)