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Geography & Topography

Capital: Ljubljana

Population: 2,055,496 inhabitants

Area:   20,273 km2

Ethnic Population: 83.1% Slovenes, 2.0% Serbians, 1.8% Croatian, 1.1% Bosniaks, 12.0% Others

Language: Slovenes

Religion: Roman Catholic

Currency: Euro


The current state of Slovenia was part of different political state formations such as the Roman Empire, the Holy Roman Empire and the Hapsburg Monarchy. In 1918, Slovenes co-founded the internationally recognized State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, which merged into Yugoslavia. Slovenia was occupied and annexed by Germany, Italy, Hungary and Croatia only to emerge afterwards as a founding member of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Slovenia became an independent country in June 1991 after the introduction of a multi-party representative democracy. In 2007, Slovenia became the first communist country to join the European Union and joined the OECD in 2010.

Performing Arts


Slovenian music is strongly linked to the musical traditions of Austria, Croatia and the North of Italy. It exists in numerous styles of Slovenian folk such as the Polka, Kolo and Waltz, genres which are especially famous internationally. During the medieval era, the music of church met the same success as popular music. In 1701, J.B Hoffer established the Philjarmonicorum Academia, a music school based on the Italian model of classical music schools. Italian classical musical had a particular impact upon Slovenian classical music which was inspired particularly by Italian opera. In 1768, a new influence arrived, the Germanic influence, which brought with it a strengthening of the Germanic identity. Then the Italian influence guided the development of the Slovenian Music in the 19th century, based on the Romantic Movement. In the 20th century, the Impressionist movement spread to Slovenia with composers such as Marij Kogoj and Slavko Osterc increasing in fame and popularity. The avant-gardists of classical music arrived in 1960 and based their work on the compositions of musicians such as Uroš Krek, Dane Skerl and Primoz Ramovs.

Slovenian folk music incorporates big band groups which are a type of musical group most associated with the Jazz genre. Artist Slavko Avsenik along with his brother Vilko Avsenik are considered to be two of the most influential composers of polka and waltzes and contributed heavily to the development of this genre in the 1950s.

Two of the most famous Slovenian bands established in the 1980s are Siddharta and Laibach. They began their ascent with other unknown groups outside Slovenia. In the former Yugoslavian state, Slovenia was the centre of the Punk Rock scene with particularly notable artists including Pankrti, Niet and Lublanski Psi. Slovenia’s electronic scene is also quite active and the country has produced two notable DJs in the techno music scene: DJ Umek and Valentino Kanzyani.


Mary Wigman

Mary Wigman performing Ballet her own way: without 'pointe shoes'.

Slovenia is particularly famous for its many Ballet Dancers. Pino Mlakar and Pia Mlakar were the most influencing dancers in that style, they were members of the Ljubljana

Opera and Ballet company from 1946 until 1960, the place was created by modern dancer Mary Wigman in the 1930’s.

Ballet: Ballet is a classical dance form demanding grace and precision following well organized patterns in order to create expression through movement.





Interesting Facts:

  • Slovenia is bordered by four countries; Austria, Italy, Croatia and Hungary
  • Scenes from The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian movie were filmed in Slovenia’s Soca Valley
  • Couples can still get married in the church on Bled Island. According to traditional customs, the groom must carry the bride up the 99 steps to reach the church in order to ensure a long and happy marriage
  • Postojna Cave, part of Slovenia’s Karst region, is the most-visited cave in Europe


The Slovenian Community in Australia

More information about the Slovenian community