Monday, 18 December 2017 | News today: 14

Mihajlovski: SDSM is annoyed by everything Macedonian

An actor’s salary in 1997 was MKD 8.500, while in 2014 top actors receive MKD 42.000. The difference between VMRO-DPMNE and SDSM is obvious. No need to say anything else. The difference is MKD 30,000.

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An actor, showmen, stand-up comedian and party member. That is the actor Toni Mihajlovski, whose jokes make everybody laugh, but lately has been criticized by certain structures, because somebody did not like them. He says he is VMRO-DPMNE’s member, a right-winger and he has never tried to hide it. He has always expressed his discontent of the other party members, about certain things, and there is almost no politician that has not been the topic of his exquisite humor.

 

Many poison arrows were thrown at you after VMRO-DPMNE’s convention, did you expect such negative energy towards you?

Mihajlovski: It is obvious that they have a huge amount of poison. Probably they have not got anything else, so they have to spend it. I did not expect that such comic regard will be received like that. I believe this was the first time in the country a convention to include such approach. I do not see anything bad in it, nothing is new in the world. Really, I did not expect that it would hurt some people like that. Probably they could not skip the joke ramp, so they took things too personally. As I said, every similarity is incredible and can hurt, probably.

How did a stand-up at the convention happen? Whose idea it was?

Mihajlovski: It was initiated by the party, by a screenwriter, to be exact. They offered me to write a text. I wrote it. even though there we rumors that I was given the words I had to say, that I was dictated to say what they have written. I absolutely had freedom while creating. And of course I offered it for correction, but there was none. We did not mention anyone snorting cocaine, but those whose hands are dirty, probable have recognized themselves. And metaphors can refer to anything and anybody, right! So, if somebody has too much baggage and you can not even mention a line when you talk about them because everything reminds them of consuming such means, I am not guilty. Those who made the baggage are the guilty ones.

How much were you paid to do it?

Mihajlovski: I am VMRO-DPMNE’s member and my performance at the convention was free of charge. On the contrary, I did it with a great pleasure and I honor. I did it as an ordinary party member. I have not taken any fee, and I will not.

You were severely criticized by the opposition media when the Prime Minister was a guest on your show “Relaxed”, where he talked about his life, his childhood, personal stuff?

Mihajlovski: Something must be wrong with those who constantly complain about somebody. Those are people that see, and yet are blind, hear, and yet are deaf, eat, and yet do not feel the taste. They are torpid people. We hear nothing but criticism from the opposition in the recent years. 99 % of the criticism is unjustified, and 1% is too little to be taken seriously. Those are people from Macedonia, who criticize everything Macedonian. They leave an awful picture of their own country and their own people and all that negative criticism we receive is not on behalf of the ruling party, but on behalf of the bad opposition, which is responsible for its own failure. It is ready to blame everybody but itself for that. They are even troubled if somebody is presented to them as their friend, neighbor, high school friend. We have seen Gruevski talking about politics for eight years. I think that politics is not the only part of his life and he has managed to show that. Everybody was criticizing that was involving where I was involving, I did what I did, no nobody noticed that the show lasted for an hour and 49 minutes. They drunk up the show as one and two, swallowed it as a pill for good health and mood and then, after they felt its positive influence, not used to so much positive energy, they had to spoil it with something so they could continue with the same story. Otherwise, the were about to become good people.

Are you bothered that today everything is put into political connotation?

Mihajlovski: Absolutely. I am attacked and defended by people to which I gave my resignation in 1997. People who did nothing about the country in regard to culture, in regard to any other field, which can be confirmed by their ruling. A kilometer has not been built, a factory has not been made, a theater has not been built. Films made can be counted with fingers. Those people are destroying everything Macedonian, including me, suddenly they are my defenders and they are sorry I have returned home. I can not understand them. People fight with their parents all the time, but then calms because it is their home. My return to VMRO-DPMNE I see as a return to home. And it hurts them. I do not know why would they think I was their. Heaven forbid. If once thought that, I beg them to get those thoughts out of their heads.

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 I am VMRO-DPMNE’s member and my performance at the convention was free of charge. On the contrary, I did it with a great pleasure and I honor. I did it as an ordinary party member. I have not taken any fee, and I will not.

You also made jokes about politicians before, but this time you cause a real firestorm, what is the reason for that, the names mentioned or the manner of saying the joke?

Mihajlovski: First of all, I did not mention any names. I said B.C. and Z.Z.. That could also mean Branislav Cvetkovski and Zekiri Zekir. Really, there is nothing more to it. Ok, it is clear where is that happening. I think that someone is been cutting off politics from humor, which is not natural. Politics should be treated through humor. We have a manifestation where former ruling set, according to the vocabulary of the opposition, was shred into pieces. Nobody from the ruling set hates the man who said that, nor attacks him on the websites, they accepted him,  had a good laugh, enjoyed in it and greeted him. They did not tear him asunder, as they did to me. I do not care what they think, I will cherish the humor further on, and they cannot destroy that. I have managed to maintain until now, and I will manage to do it in the future. Why do you attack them even tough they are already miserable?! Well, it is not me to blame they are miserable, there is enough material to process.

You are an actor, but now you have taken a political role, what is easier, to be criticized because of poorly played role in the theater or to be attacked out of political reasons?

Mihajlovski: Criticism in professional sense does not strike me, whether it is a played role or a stand-up comedy. My work is public and susceptible to criticism. I am being annoyed by personal madness, when somebody goes where  they should not, for instance family, criticizing human characteristics… Then I reply insolently, on the level they are asking for. Those who want normal communication and receive that from me. Criticism has always been there to correct me, but this time I do not accept the criticism because this is my ideology, I am a rightwinger, and my party has produced other 15 parties in the last 20 years. I, maybe took a turn in two or three of them, but is was always the right wing, I never went left or towards the center. Probably, the return of the old members scares them. Maybe they are annoyed by the feelings of statehood and affiliation within the Macedonian people.

In 2001, you were part of the “lions”, could that be the reason that you are now criticized by those who instead of being in the trenches, they were sunbathing on the cost of the Aegean Sea?

Mihajlovski: I have met B.C. twice. The first time was in 1995, when I went to him together with Igor Dzambazov and Mirce Donevski. He was the Prime Minister at the time, so we asked him to engage more in culture and art in Macedonia. At the time, it was the only thing that put us arm to arm with many European and world forces in culture. The man offered us whiskey, he was probably uncomfortable to offer something else, then he said: Why would actors need money? We said we did not come to seek money for the actors, but for all artists and culture in general. The man, obviously, had no sense for such thing, so he just smiled and said: There are no money for such thing. At that moment I realized what a “lunatic” he was. The second time was with the “lions”, when we held talks with him, President Boris Trajkovski and Hari Kostov, when he was also the Prime Minister and promised us everything and lied to us. Those were my two meetings with him. Their basic drive line is lying. And they are afraid of the “lions” indeed. They showed and confessed that back then as well. They came after us with rifles, mortars and armoured regiment. Then we pull out our weapons and said that if they wanted war they would get it. Since then, I think that they have a natural fear from the “lions” even in their sleeps. There is some influence that I was the spokesman of the unit. SDSM is annoyed by everything that is Macedonian, that is courageous and that loves its country, because that threatens to their intention to destroy all that.

What if, God forbid, the hell from 2001 repeats? Would you do again what you did back then and how do you think citizens would behave?

Mihajlovski: Those who run away back then, will run away again. We will have commander Halkidiki, commander Hanioti, but I have no dilemmas about it. Everyone who feels as Macedonian knows that if their country is under attack, the only holly mission is to defend it, pledging their life – this is a quotation from a book written 2.500 years ago.

VMRO-DPMNE is aiming for 62 MPs and absolute majority so that DUI or other political parties would not be able to blackmail it. Do you think it is possible?

Mihajlovski: Absolutely. VMRO-DPMNE was close to that on multiple occasions. Normally, if it were not for the games of those who betray their own people buying votes from those who do not feel as Macedonians, although they were born here, and are always ready to take the traitor’s side. I hope the Macedonian people will bring a verdict to them both this time. To decide and grant VMRO-DPMNE enough MPs so that Macedonia can enjoy its independence, instead of being a tenant in its own house.  Nobody should command us. I am for co-existence, I do not mind anyone living here and love their country, regardless of nationality or religion. But I do mind those who do not love their country and I would fight against those till the last drop. One does not only fight with a gun and one does not only die of a bullet.

Do you think all politicians should strive for improvement of the lives of all citizens, or should their personal interest be their priority?

Mihajlovski: Human character is undefined category and is exposed to various temptations. Our whole life is a temptation and the Ministers are not immune to them. The current Government is the one that hold out the longest without reconstruction. It must be some indicator that they are working. We witness health reforms for the first time in 70 years. As far culture is concerned, I should not even comment – 6 theaters and the “Skopje 2014″ project. There are improvements in all areas, which has not happened to us ever before. Yes, they are human, and yes – they too make mistakes, but those mistakes are not disastrous for the people. I do think their goal is working for Macedonia’s well-being, for the well-being of each citizen.

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Should we expect that one day, following the example of your coworkers Branislav Lekikj or Emir Hadjihafisbegovikj from the region, to jump from the theater stage boards into the political waters? Do you have political ambitions?

Mihajlovski: Never. I am afraid of it. Everyone deals with politics, more or less. I admire politicians who can do that, it requires time and dedication. But, I do vote, I am a party member, I want to participate in the decision-making process. Politics is interesting and very important, it is a policy  for a nation’s comfortable living and existence. And I love the theater too much, I love the movies to just leave them and enter politics. Politics captures all your free time. I want to spend my time on art and fine creations. On one hand, politics challenges me, you can make people feel better for a longer period of time. In the theater, unfortunately, it only lasts for 2 hours, until the next performance, the next movie, the next show. If I were successful in politics half to what I am successful in my career, I would most probably be one of the more successful politicians.

You have left the theater in 1997 and said you will never go back to it again, but in 2013 you did return. What made you do that?

Mihajlovski: The salary in 1997 was 8.500 denars, and in 2014 the prime artists salary is 42.000 denars. It is a 30.000 denars difference. That is how much more VMRO-DPMNE has given to the people, artists, professors… That is the reason why I had quit and returned. Someone started treating us as humans, value what we do in a different way. Also, nobody called me back so far. Now, they did. I asked, and my prayers have been answered. I have regretted my actions. I deprived my son from some things.

Since you mentioned your son Aleksandar, he is a young actor who is yet to enter that world. Did you advise him on the political games in the theater?

Mihajlovski: Aleksandar is upset that I have been attacked on the Internet portals, especially by the: “Your kids will be ashamed of you” comments. Their kids probably already are ashamed of them, they never had a career, so the use me to compensate. Their 5-minutes glory is to post on Toni Mihajlovski’s Wall. They never wrote anything clever in their life, except for a Facebook status. There are some intelligent persons, paid by some allegedly open “social society”, and everyone copies them. Messing with my children annoys me and I am ready to do anything in such situation.

Do you feel as nationalist, and can an artist be nationalist at all? 

Mihajlovski: Why not?! Is it forbidden?! Yes, I do feel nationalist. One has smoothed things in time, so jealousy is not jealousy anymore, but love, need and protection of what you have. I feel the same way about nationalism. I am nationalist in that matter: I do not want what is not mine, and I do not give what is mine. I believe everyone who loves their country is borderline nationalist. I do not like radical nationalists, though. Nazism is a dangerous thread that strings along nationalism. Luckily, it still has not emerged in Macedonia.

Although the public thinks of you as right-oriented, you have paid everyone back, almost every Macedonian politician has been subject of your jokes, will you continue in the same direction?

Mihajlovski: Everthing I have ever done has been done publicly, loud, clear, transparent. I have never hid anything. Man is entitled to changes. One’s character changes over the years. I believe to remain the same man, I will not change my fundamentals: free speech, expressing my thought the way I see fit. I have already paid  high for my freedom, and it should cost much. That is the way it is supposed to be. Those who think they are free, they are not. I will continue to think I am free, to think freely, nobody forbids that. This is my ideology and there is no need for me to attack my own people where there is no room for it.

By: Biljana Zafirova