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Award-winning Slovenian composer, ethnomusicologist, etymologist and Slovenian culture specialist Pavle Merkù was born in Trieste on 12 July 1927, and studied in Trieste, Ljubljana and Rome.
His compositions consist mostly of chamber and choral works, but he also wrote an opera, Kačji pastir ('The Dragonfly'), and his Violin Concerto received the Prešeren Award in 1972.
Merkù's Slovene studies, which involved collecting folk material from Slovenian people living in Italy, culminated in Slovene Folk Heritage in Italy, published in 1976.
In 2007 he received the Kozina Award for his work as a composer. He also received awards for his work in collecting Slovenian folk material, for strengthening Slovenian cross-border identity and for his scholarly and artistic merit.
Pavle Merkù died on 20 October 2014, aged eighty-seven.