A Serbian music teacher, Mladen Stankovic had previously conducted the Yugoslav National Opera and the Sarajevo Symphony Orchestra. He is the longest-serving Musical Director to date, staying with the choir for 13 years.
Under Mladen’s direction, the Pink Singers developed enormously. The size of the choir doubled within this period to around 80 singers, requiring us to seek out larger rehearsal space to accommodate us all. As a result of this growth and a more rigorous audition process, the standard of our singing and performances improved considerably. We moved concert venues several times as our audiences grew (including the Royal Academy of Music and the Royal College of Music) before we settled on our now familiar home of Cadogan Hall.
Mladen consistently programmed classical music and established the balance of classical and popular music that we have today. It was also during this period that we produced our first ever CDs – Hand in Hand and Pink Singers Live which are still selling strong and available to buy today.
Many people in the choir remain today who have fond memories of Mladen’s time with us. Everyone no doubt has a favourite memory from his 13 years as Musical Director, although perhaps the best evidence of his achievements is the second place the Pink Singers achieved in the Manchester Amateur Choral Competition in 2009.
Timeline datestamp: 18 May 1996