fanfare shukar 1Fanfare Shukar are a Roma brass band from Romania. The band was formed in the 1990s by the clarinetist and multi-instrumentalist Costica Pantiru and is made up of 10 musicians. Before changing its name to Fanfare Shukar, the band was known as Fanfare Zece Prajini (shukar, by the way, is Romani and means something like good/beautiful).
The band’s musicians all come from Zece Prajini, a small village of just 400 inhabitants located in the eastern part of Romania, close to the Moldavian border. The village had already become quite famous on the ethno music scene thanks to the success of another brass band – Fanfare Ciocarlia. Music is the main source of income for many of the families in the village, who for the most part belong to the Roma ethnic group.
Brass bands are very popular in Romania as well as in most of the other Balkan countries and are an integral part of the traditional culture and folklore there. Their roots go back to the Ottoman and Hapsburg military bands of the 19th Century.
The musicians of Fanfare Shukar are all related to each other. The group’s founder Costica Pantiru is one of the most famous band leaders in Romania and is regularly invited to take part with his group in television shows and folkloric events throughout the country. Pantiru is a master of all the instruments used in the band. This talent makes for some unique arrangements that give the band its distinctive sound. Exactly where the traditional songs end and where Costica Panturi’s musical creations begin can’t always be said, but they make the band’s concerts particularly an unparalleled experience. The band often refer to their music style as being "Gypsy influential pan-Balkan music from Eastern Europe", or plain and simple "turbo brass"!
Fanfare Shukar have performed at a number of concerts and festivals both at home and abroad, including in Japan, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the USA. Fanfare Shukar are decidedly a live band, thrilling their audiences time and again with their energetic live shows.
Despite their national and international success, Fanfare Shukar still play regularly at weddings, village festivals and funerals in and around their hometown of Zece Prajini. In this way, they help maintain the local traditions and remain a part of the local community.


Pantiru Costica - clarinet
Pantiru Liviu - tuba
Cantea Nicusor - trumpet
Radu Sorin - trumpet
Chiriac Narcis - trumpet
Gavril Vasile - baritone
Gavril Dumitru Nicolaie - bass
Diaconescu Florin - bass


Text: Robert Lippuner / Gypsy Music Network
Translation: Jamie Davies


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