Macedonian superstar Dani Dimitrovska (aka Dani) started her career on the music contest Makfest in Štip with the song “Samo Ti Mi Trebaš”. The single was a smash hit, and so in 2000, she had high hopes when represented her country in Eurovision with the song “A Nekogaš”. The same year, she gave birth to her son, Lazar. After taking some time off to be a mom, Dani made a huge comeback with the hit song “Srca Dve” (“Two Hearts”), which placed her at number 1 on all Macedonian charts for a month. The song also reached number 4 on MTV Adria.
Here, Dani tells us about Macedonia, mountains, and veggie masks.
What’s your earliest memory of the natural world?
My hometown (Skopje, capital of Macedonia) is surrounded by mountains. On one of them, my parents have a villa which is surrounded by unspoiled, pure nature. We used to spend a lot of time there, and the fresh air and being able to use all the advantages of the nature surrounding us at that earliest age for me was very important.
I suppose that my whole childhood is a memory itself of being in nature. One of the benefits of that was that I could sing out loud all the time, while looking for fresh strawberries, and practice for what I became later on.
Which ‘green’ beauty products do you use?
Well, if a homemade face mask out of veggie leftovers count, than that’s it.
Where is your favourite place to be in nature?
I suppose that this is connected to my earliest memories…I adore mountains! I love snowboarding, mountain climbing, having a bird’s-eye view while playing the guitar on some mountain top.
What’s the most positive thing you do to help save the planet?
I believe that simple things can make a difference. Every day I am doing small simple things which slowly but surely already moved into habit. For example: Every year my son and I plant a tree in our neighbourhood. I wash my clothes with cold-warm water, we are using both sides of the paper, brush without running the water, I buy vegetables and fruits from our local farmer’s market, I always turn off lights when I am leaving a room and I never throw my old clothes, I always donate them to the Red Cross or some other charitable organisation.
I am sharing and passing my experience and knowledge to others. If every person I know could take one small step toward being greener, the collective effort could be amazing.
What’s your greatest ‘eco sin’?
Big or small, it’s still a sin in that regards. I mean, I don’t have the tendency to represent myself as some eco activist or “eco saint” for that matter, because I am not, however my humble opinion is that the biggest problem, and consequently biggest sin is in the old habits that die hard. Habits of this fast moving life. I mean, I used to buy 10 pack of bottled water at a time, and then I used to throw these bottles away without recycling them.
We do not even notice how much we contribute to damaging ‘our house’ with our daily habits (I believe in Greek, ‘eco’ actually means ‘house’).
Which celebrities or high profile people do you most admire for their work to save the planet?
To be honest, I have never really looked up at someone in order to inspire me to be more careful and active in saving the planet. I believe there are a lot of celebrities who care about our global home, and act accordingly. However, although their actions may have a bigger impact in terms of leading by example, they are not more valuable than anyone’s on this planet.
How would you like to change your work to make it more eco-friendly?
When we all understand that everything depends on us, then the change begins. When we all realise we need to live differently and learn how instead of destructive we can become a healing force.
I would like to share a quote here from Mother Theresa, who is one of my inspirations: “ You cannot do great things in world, but small things with great love”.
I believe that each one of us can make a small impact that helps move things in the right direction. We each have a circle of people who are influenced by us – by what we say and do. I’ve already committed to living an eco lifestyle—one year ago I become vegetarian; I started eating organic food, and this already made a huge impact on my family for instance. Next is recycling and shopping in local shops by walking to them.
As a mother, what’s your greatest concern for your child’s future?
I never was an over protective mother. He was raised with great love and respect for all humanity. He was raised to be responsible for the choices he makes. I wish for him to become a positive and productive contributor to his world.
Knowledge means little without good judgement. As an example, I would not only want him to understand what pollution is, but also how it is caused and how we can prevent it. I hope that he’ll know right from wrong and not just follow the in crowd because they’re doing (something that may be harmful).
My biggest concern is the environment. If we don’t take care of our planet, what’s the point? There won’t be any people to worry about. I hope and pray my son will have clean water to drink and clean air to breathe. We all need to work on recycling and stopping toxic pollutants. Because once (a resource) is gone, we can never get it back.
To see more about Dani, click here.