Balkan World Music Guide 2024

The Balkan World Music Guide is a free pocket book published by Budapest-based Hangveto, the leading organization of MOST Music. In this booklet, you will find a comprehensive guide to a vibrant scene and the achievements of the 4-year-long project in Southeast Europe and beyond, a region that is full of beauty and thrilling creative ideas. We know that there is no definitive guide to Balkan world music, so we will pursue the humble quest of showcasing some amazing talent: musicians, festivals and clubs, policy-makers and industry professionals who have worked with us in the MOST Music project. MOST Music is supported by Creative Europe, the European Union’s framework programme for the creative sector. Find out more:


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BALKAN WORLD MUSIC GUIDE Published by MOST Music & Hangvető, Budapest, 2024 Editors: Klára Nagy, Ella Csarnó, Erzsébet Levandovsky, Eszter Barna, Alíz Csák, Anna Dupák Graphic design: Nur Mohammed & Zoltán Bukovics Typesetting, prepress: Anuri Design Studio Made in Hungary by Gyomai Kner Printing House (est. 1882) Zoltán Csöndes, CEO This booklet is free of charge, for-pro昀椀t distribution is forbidden. MOST Music is supported by Creative Europe, the European Commission’s framework programme for support to the culture and audiovisual sectors. © 2024 @mostmusiceu




ABOUT MOST Welcome to the Balkan World Music Guide – we are so excited to have you! In this booklet, you will 昀椀nd a comprehensive guide to a vibrant scene and the achievements of the 4-year-long project in Southeast Europe and beyond, a region that is full of beauty and thrilling creative ideas. We know that there is no de昀椀nitive guide to Balkan world music, so we will pursue the humble quest of showcasing some amazing talent: musicians, festivals and clubs, policy-makers and industry professionals who have worked with us in the MOST Music project. You might already know that “most” means bridge in many Slavic languages – this is why we named our support project MOST, the Bridge for Balkan Music. The mission of MOST – started in 2019 by Hangvető and co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme – was to boost the music market of the Balkans by connecting and supporting actors of the world music scene. The goal of MOST is to channel the untapped potential of Southeast Europe into the larger European market and to foster mutually bene昀椀cial connections across parties. To do this, we decided to focus on the markets in a larger region including Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania, Montenegro, Kosovo*, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Albania and North Macedonia. The four-year-long project focused on four pillars of activity: Balkan Music Export for artists, Management Training for beginner or aspiring world music professionals, Festival & Club Exchange for events and * This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence. 6

venues, and 昀椀nally the Urban Project Hub incubator for urban music projects. MOST built a bridge connecting the Balkans and the global music market, a bridge made up of personal connections, experience and exchange. Selected by an expert jury board from close to one thousand applicants, the MOST project had over 30 artists, 80 managers and 60 festivals & clubs and 20 policy-makers. They took part in international training and mentoring by the best in the industry, they met for networking and traineeships, and they rocked the most prestigious stages in the genre, from WOMEX through Budapest Ritmo to EXIT and Eurosonic. MOST Music has been crowned with a celebration of Balkan music at the BALKAN:MOST Showcase & Conference on 7–9 September 2023, in Veszprém, the European Capital of Culture. We saw 昀椀rsthand that once given the opportunity and resources, participants were able to show their uniqueness, proving that Balkan musicians and music industry professionals cannot and should not be ignored. MOST Music is a consortium of 10 partner organisations, led by the Budapest-based Hangvető – to learn more about the outstanding world music institutions that support the project’s e昀昀orts, turn to the Partners chapter. For more information about MOST Music, visit our website, or follow us on social media! | @mostmusiceu 2019–2024 MOST – The Complex Strategy to Develop The Balkan World Music Scene (Project Ref. No.: 607584-CREA-1-2019-1-HU-CULT-COOP2) 7

MOST PILLARS MOST was built on four main pillars: four segments of the music industry with speci昀椀c needs and possibilities. BALKAN MANAGEMENT MUSIC TRAINING EXPORT FOR ARTISTS FOR YOUNG 30 bands received MANAGERS, mentoring, trainings, BOOKERS showcase and & PROMOTERS portfolio support 80 managers received trainings, traineeship and networking opportunities 8

FESTIVAL URBAN AND CLUB PROJECT EXCHANGE HUB FOR FESTIVAL FOR CREATIVE ORGANISERS MINDS, URBAN AND CLUB ACTIVISTS OWNERS 20 participants 60 festivals or clubs received mentoring received support for and training, 12 exchanging artists and urban projects were knowledge implemented 9

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PARTNERS OF MOST MUSIC Hangvető is a Budapest-based 360° music 昀椀rm with increasing scope in its region and beyond. Hangvető organises world music festivals such as Budapest Ritmo, cultural events like Pont Festival, training programs such as CEU Summer University courses, and develops cultural strategy, with a special expertise in UNESCO Music Cities and European Capitals of Culture. The 昀椀rm also produces 昀椀lms and documentaries, as well as publishes and distributes records. We are the leaders of the MOST, the Bridge for Balkan Music project and of UPBEAT, the European Showcase Platform for World Music. The company won the right to host WOMEX in 2015 and 2020. EXIT Foundation is part of the EXIT Festival team that focuses on social activism. EXIT is one of the greatest music festivals of Central Eastern Europe, deeply rooted in youth social activism. This activism is in the heart of the festival, that EXIT founders never separate from the music spectacle it stands for. 12

Password Production has a past of more than 20 years in the music and entertainment industry and hosted over 1000 international acts. Password Production has so far organised the largest festivals in North Macedonia (Taksirat, D Festival, Green Beach, PIN Music Conference, Skopje Beer Fest). Bozar, the Centre for Fine Arts, Brussels organises more than 12 cultural events per day and attracts 1 million visitors each year. It is a driving force behind international artistic initiatives designed to strengthen ties in Europe and with other continents. Piranha Arts is a Berlin-based independent creative company. They travel Europe with the leading showcase, conference and expo event of the world music industry, WOMEX. 13

Songlines is the de昀椀nitive magazine for world music – music that has its roots in all parts of the globe. The London-based magazine has been a source of music knowledge since 1999. ReK – Remont Kapital Culture Center is an interdisciplinary and international team (Albanian, Italian and Belgian) involved in arts, music, architecture, design, urban planning, and performing. The Bulgarian Music Association is the biggest representative music organization in Bulgaria. Its main aim is to create the appropriate and e昀케cient cultural environment the Bulgarian performing artists deserve. 14

Timișoara 2023 – European Capital of Culture Association The Association for the European Capital of Culture (originally planned for 2021, rescheduled for 2023) in Timișoara, Romania is a proud member of the MOST Music consortium. The European Music Council (EMC) is a non-pro昀椀t organisation dedicated to the development and promotion of all genres and types of music in Europe. As part of the International Music Council (IMC), the EMC strategies and actions are based on the IMC’s 5 music rights. Pro Progressione (Associated Partner) is a socially engaged cultural hub, an independent organisation working towards the creation and support of an open and diverse culture. 15



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LADIES AND GENTLEMEN: BALKAN WORLD MUSIC The Balkan Music Export project started out as just one of the pillars of MOST Music, but it quickly became more meaningful than that. Often lacking local export o昀케ces, Southeast European artists have long been looking for opportunities to get on international stages in the region and beyond. The Balkan Music Export project 昀椀nally o昀昀ered the support and network these artists needed to reach tastemakers and break the glass ceiling of world music. This is the core mission of the Balkan Music Export pillar: to grant opportunity to those who are worthy. We support local artists who are ready for international attention, we o昀昀er training, mentoring, portfolio building, networking and performance opportunities for selected applicants. Meet the 30 artists, chosen from close to 500 applicants by the expert jury of MOST Music! Mentored by the best in the business and booked by festivals such as WOMEX, EXIT, Budapest Ritmo and Eurosonic, they really are a testament to what contemporary Balkan artists have to o昀昀er. For more information about the artists, visit our website: 22

AGONA SHPORTA KOSOVO* TRADITIONAL, MEDITATIVE Between the songbooks of the Balkans, the Middle East, America and India, vocalist, pianist and composer Agona Shporta’s music blends into a rich and diverse mixture of sounds and cultures. Each of the pieces are journeys of their own, sifted through her original voice and interpretation into a harmonious and enchanting unity. * This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence. 23

ALICE IN WONDERBAND SERBIA WORLD MUSIC, GLOBAL MUSIC, BALKAN MUSIC, BODY MUSIC Alice in WonderBand is a Balkan world music duo from Serbia. Their performance is vibrating and rhythmic, powerful and energetic, a crossroads of dance, stage movement and music. They take the audience on a journey creating a singing and clapping community, rooted, grounded and inspired. 24

ALMIR MESKOVIC & DANIEL LAZAR DUO BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA, SERBIA, NORWAY CONTEMPORARY FOLK Almir Meskovic and Daniel Lazar duo are highly skilled musicians known for their virtuosic performances that capture the emotions of their listeners. In昀氀uenced by folk traditions, they incorporate various elements into their music, creating a unique experience. Their energetic live shows are a feast for the senses, with an impressive ability to improvise and connect with the audience. They have released their second album in 2023, “Family Beyond Blood”. 25

BAKLAVA NORTH MACEDONIA WORLD MUSIC, ETHNO, MACEDONIAN TRADITIONAL, ELECTRONIC Baklava is a World Music band formed in 2004 in Skopje. So far, the band recorded and published 昀椀ve albums. The last 昀椀fth album “From Skopje with Love” was published in June 2023 for CPL Music. They play and sing in various languages, travel, explore strange new worlds, and boldly go where no sweet pastry has gone before. 26

BALKALAR CROATIA BALKAN, GYPSY, ETHNO, SKA Embark on a euphoric journey through the rich tapestry of Balkan melodies with Balkalar, a vibrant ethno ensemble coming from Zagreb, Croatia. Founded on the pillars of freedom, love, and celebration, Balkalar reinvigorates traditional Balkan tunes with energetic arrangements, ensuring an irresistible urge to dance to the eclectic rhythms of Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and beyond. The sound consists of vocals, double bass, violin, guitar and percussion. 27

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BESART ZHUJA KOSOVO* WORLD MUSIC, ETHNO-JAZZ Bes-Art is a songwriter, singer and art performer from Kosovo. The 昀椀rst part of the name is associated with a local Albanian custom of “Besa” that is, a code of loyalty. While the second part of the name is quite obvious. Bes-Art seems to have found the purpose of life in these two syllables. They are the two main pillars of his approach to his artistic and daily life. * This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence. 29

CORINA SÎRGHI ȘI TARAFUL JEAN AMERICANU ROMANIA ROMANIAN, ROMANI, LAUTAREASCA Corina Sîrghi, backed by the traditional all-acoustic taraf led by accordionist Shaun Williams (aka Jean Americanu) and featuring virtuoso lăutar musicians Meltiade Mihalache (violin), Marian Șerban (cimbalom) and Costel Nechita (double bass), evokes the smoky parlors of 1930s Bucharest and the Mahala block parties of the 1990s with a mix of passionate romances, sultry tangos, 昀椀ery lăutar dances, and raucous manele classics that will tame even the most troubled of hearts. 30

DANTCHEV:DOMAIN BULGARIA, FINLAND WORLD FUSION, FINNISH-BULGARIAN GROOVE, EXPERIMENTAL DANTCHEV:DOMAIN is a quintet of experimental world fusion, where strong cinematic melodies, tight rhythmical webs meet universal stories. Bulgarian musical heritage and elements of blues and other afro-american roots music are combined in a unique and original way in Finnish–Bulgarian Anna Dantchev’s compositions. Known also as a ”Bulgarian Voice from Finland” she brings out the Bulgarian diaspora in Finland to the wider world music scene. 31

DINA E MEL CROATIA ETHNOMUSICOLOGY, CLASSICAL, ARBARESH Dina e Mel is a duo (vocal/guitar) who researches and performs forgotten music of the Mediterranean and the Balkans, bringing new life to the melodies and fragments that survived the long and turbulent history of that area. Their project Bërbili (Nightingale) – Forgotten songs of the Zadar Arbanasi builds around the Dina’s family history, the Arbanesh – people who 300 years ago migrated from the Lake of Skadar to Zadar. It preserves musical heritage by creating it anew, transforming the material from tunes for the kitchens and courtyards into pieces for the concert hall. 32

DIVANHANA BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA WORLD MUSIC, SEVDAH, BALKAN Divanhana a Bosnian sevdah band, performs traditional music in new arrangements, in昀氀uenced by jazz, pop, and 20th century music. Divanhana’s mission is to cherish urban traditional music from BiH and from Balkan region with a particular attention to the Sevdalinka. The band founded in 2009 by students from the Sarajevo Music Academy recorded 6 albums on international labels and threw over 400 concerts around the globe. Latest release “Zavrzlama” hit the top of the charts and brought them Songlines Music Award as the best band in 2023. 33

DUNJALUK CROATIA WORLD, GLOBAL, SEVDAH, NOISE, EXPERIMENTAL, IMPROVISATION Dunjaluk consists of singer Dunja Bahtijarević and electric guitarist Luka Čapeta, who focus on reinterpreting songs from the Bosnian tradition of sevdah. Dunjaluk looks for the universal in tradition, for that which still resonates today, and translates it into modern musical expression. The sound of Dunjaluk is an abstraction of sounds arising from the language of sevdah, steeped into diverse musical in昀氀uences, from noise and punk, to jazz and classical techniques. Sevdah has been transformed many times over centuries, and Dunjaluk strives to make the most of that space open to change. 34

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E.U.E.R.P.I. BULGARIA AMBIENT, PSYCHEDELIC E.U.E.R.P.I. is the guitar drone ambient project of Mirian Kolev, who lives and composes in the Balkan Mountains of Bulgaria. His music is minimalistic, meditative and discreetly psychedelic. Improvisation is a fundamental part of each of his live performances, turning them into an expressive soundtrack of space-time. He often takes part in multidisciplinary projects and collaborates with di昀昀erent artists – musicians, visual artists and performers. 36

FLYING NOMADS BULGARIA ATHMOSPHERIC FOLK, NEO FOLK, ACOUSTIC Embark on a transformative journey with the Flying Nomads, a Bulgarian duo seamlessly blending ethno and modern styles. Kristina and Daniel, virtuosos of the tambura and daf, craft soul-stirring fusion music. Nestled in the Rhodope Mountains, their regenerative music acts as a soothing balm, fostering a profound connection to nature. From enchanting settings to diverse festivals, the Flying Nomads’ acoustic tapestry intricately weaves tradition and innovation, o昀昀ering a timeless musical odyssey. 37

GIPSY GROOVE KOSOVO* UPBEAT, ROMA, FUSION Gipsy Groove fuses ethnicities, cultures, they radiate energy and charisma – hard to forget, impossible not to dance to. Gipsy Groove is the guarantee for an impressive show where nobody is left behind. The band members are from a variety of ethnic backgrounds – they bring to their performances their own cultural diversity, as well as their interest in human rights and peace. * This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence. 38

GRAIU ROMANIA DARK FOLK, ROOTS REVIVAL Independent niche dark-folk act with a fairly good concert activity, having performed in many cultural events and festivals throughout Romania and released their second album TORA in December 2022, fusing in sound and spirit Balkan Romance (Vlach) heritage with African-American music from before blues and jazz, GRAIU is the Romanian word for the local language vernacular and local folk music. 39

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KALATA NORTH MACEDONIA NEOFOLK KALATA is a neofolk band from Skopje that draws a parallel between Eastern and Western culture, with the accent of the traditional Macedonian music. Without borders, musicians rely on their feelings and inspiration and are free to play whatever their imagination creates. Since 2018, Kalata has performed at many festivals including D Festival, PIN and some European festivals like MMVV and BALKAN:MOST. Their 昀椀rst album “Kalata” will be released in the beginning of 2024. 41

KOSZIKA ROMANIA FOLK FUSION, JAZZFOLK, VILLAGE FUNK/POP Koszika is rooted in Hungarian, Romanian, and Gypsy music – the music of the three ethnic groups sharing the land of Transylvania – but clothing them in di昀昀erent out昀椀ts and accesorising them stylishly. As a duo they will showcase the rich musical tapestry of their multicultural homeland in a concert entitled Transylvanian Tales, bravely fusioning geographically distant styles and genres such as traditional folklore, neo soul, reggae, bossa nova, weaving them together into a borderless, post-genre music. 42

LAKIKO BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA FUTURISTIC MELANCHOLY, LOOPED CELLO Cellist extraordinaire Lakiko is an exciting and experimental artist going against all Balkan stereotypes, while still being unapologetically local and authentic. Lakiko is a cello – bowed, scratchy, repetitive and haunting. Lakiko is also a voice, singing about nomadic existence, nightmares, an archaic past and a dystopian future. Lakiko – aka cellist, singer and composer Lana Kostic – was created in 2016 in an EEG-machine, where Kostic experimented with the idea of free will. Using her brain waves as the instruction on what to play next, Lakiko created music that originates from beyond the depths of consciousness – a part of our brain buried deep inside. 43

LENHART TAPES SERBIA ETHNO-NOISE, INDUSTRIAL-FOLK Lenhart Tapes is a one-man-cassette-tape-manipulator and he has been mostly known for his live, striking and unforgettable live performances. Yes, walkmans are his musical instruments, and he does a live mix of selected material from his cassette collection on top of the original rhythmic loops. As music experts say, the thing Lenhart Tapes does is a sophisticated and wild world- noise-ethno-industrial-folk zombie musical genre. Field recordings, rare folk music, spoken word and sound propaganda material, various musical genre albums – you name it, he probably has it. 44

LINDA RUKAJ ALBANIA VOCAL ETHNO-JAZZ Albanian folk music with a touch of jazz harmonies and a little bit of fragrance and elegance from Paris – this is the essence of Linda Rukaj, vocalist, composer and multi-instrumentalist performer. Mostly alone on stage, she sings and plays no less than seven di昀昀erent instruments – which is a symbolic number for her, like the seven-note scale, the seven colours of the rainbow, jazz chords played with a seventh, the seven chakras of our body and the seven seas. 45

NAIRUZ BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA MEDITERRANEAN, FUSION, DOWNTEMPO A thrilling mix of 昀氀amenco and Su昀椀 music, NAiRUZ doesn’t simply give a performance – when it comes to them, expect a full-on show experience. The band is known for their tasteful and elegant representation and their masterful mix of musical worlds: playing the 昀氀amenco guitar to resemble the sound of the oud, combined with the Turkish ney, singing recitation of Su昀椀 poetry, and of course the majestic dance of 昀氀amenco. 46

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NAKED SERBIA BALKAN ETHNO-JAZZ Built from the complicated history of ex-Yugoslavia, Naked plays happy music about sadness – music with unwavering honesty, with a nakedness of both heart and soul. They are worldwide recognised for their powerful and highly skilled music. A gypsy violin, saxophone and clarinet converse with the melody accompanied by a tight bass and drum section. Together they create a sense of diverse global-urbanism, a natural crossover of swing, funk, bebop, psychedelic dub, free jazz and classical music, with specks of the Mediterranean, Africa, and Eastern European traditions. 48

ORATNITZA BULGARIA ETHNOBASS Oratnitza’s music is a blend of Bulgarian folk melodies, orthodox-style chanting, world music elements, hip-hop, dubstep, trap, D’n’B, and irregular rhythms. Oratnitza interprets Bulgarian traditional songs in a way our generations can truly embrace. “Ethnobass” performed in extraordinary shows – in front of Space Invaders, for example – is the essence of the Bulgarian Oratnitza. They’ve toured in Asia, the US and multiple times in Europe. 49

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PERIJA NORTH MACEDONIA DARK FOLK, MEDITATIVE Perija is a critical folk band that plays with many music in昀氀uences, from traditional music of the areas they live in, middle-eastern maqam music and some north- African styles, to blues, post-punk, atonal and jazz. Their songs are in di昀昀erent languages of the Balkans, as to share an idea of equality between nations and ethnicities. Previously the themes of their songs were old village songs, their new material covers what they believe to be important social issues of the present, the lyrics are usually poems or pieces from acknowledged authors and newspaper clippings. 51

PJEV CROATIA A CAPPELLA, TRADITIONAL, BALKAN POLYPHONY PJEV is a female a cappella quintet from Zagreb which cherishes traditional vocal music from Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia & Herzegovina. It gathers singers from these countries and their common ground is a shared tradition transmitted by a common language. In times when mainstream rhetoric serves to divide these nations and cultures, their songs pay tribute to the underlying unity. “Medna roso” LP was released in 2023 as a collaboration with Kit Downes and Hayden Chisholm by Redhook records. 52

RODJENICE SERBIA A CAPPELLA, DARK FOLK The Serbian Rodjenice all-female a cappella trio takes a feminine dive into the freedom of identity in modern times – a deeply coded message, ancient symbolism dressed in modern language, and their energetic performance makes them truly outstanding. Rodjenice named themselves after the goddess triplets of Serbian and Slavic mythology, supernatural female creatures who determine the fate of a newborn child. Their hypnotic performance will enchant even those who are usually not fans of the a cappella genre. 53

SHIRA U’TFILA SERBIA SACRED MUSIC, SEPHARDIC, FUSION Shira Ut昀椀la means song and prayer in Hebrew. The band carries forward the heritage of the Shepardic, Hispanic Jews, by performing songs in their ancient language, Ladino. They are a multi-ethnic, multi-confessional ensemble that draws its inspiration from the diversity and richness of Judeo-Spanish, Ottoman-Turkish, Arabic and Balkan musical traditions. Shira U’t昀椀la has released multiple albums, toured a dozen countries and collaborated on various research and production projects. The band’s distinct sound brings a modern twist to a historical legacy. 54

SHKODRA ELEKTRONIKE ALBANIA POST IMMIGRANT POP Shkodra Elektronike is the music project of two Albanian immigrants who grew up in Italy, pretty far away from their mother city, Shkoder. The project is formed by Kolë Laca and Beatriçe Gjergji. They have di昀昀erent ages and di昀昀erent life stories and yet their need is so similar: 昀椀nding a way to go home without taking any airplane. They de昀椀ne their genre as “Post Immigrant Pop”. The heart of the project is the re-interpretation of the traditional songs of Shkodra in a contemporary electronic key. 55

VLADIMIR BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA SEPHARDIC, TRADITIONAL VLADIMIR was founded by sculptor, painter, singer and music producer Vladimir Mićković and Adis Sirbubalo. They recorded their 昀椀rst album in 2021, the repertoire of the album is a musical journey from Spain to the Balkans, songs that have been sung for generations from Split and Dubrovnik through Sarajevo and Mostar to Bitola and Thessaloniki. From the rich heritage of Sephardic songs, Vladimir chose mostly traditional ones, composed before the Second World War, including original songs created during the Holocaust and after the Second World War. 56

ZARINA PRVASEVDA NORTH MACEDONIA TRADITIONAL MUSIC, GLOBAL TRADITIONAL MUSIC Zarina plays Macedonian and global traditional music, carefully adding scents and colors from other alternative genres of music, but still remaining in the experience of the authentic spirit of the traditional music. She is the 昀椀rst holder of the “Best New Talent 2023 Award“ of UPBEAT Platform. She has collaborated with artists around the world and has also worked on 昀椀lm projects. Her album EHO contains 11 traditional songs from di昀昀erent regions, in 4 di昀昀erent languages. She gained 9th position on Balkan World Music Chart in 2022. 57

SONGLINES COMPILATION CDS FEATURING MOST ARTISTS – Perks of the freshest contemporary Balkan music We proudly presented MOST Selection albums that were produced by Songlines Magazine and were distributed among readers and industry event professionals. The unique sound of MOST Artists reached even wider audiences! 58


COME ON A ROAD TRIP WITH US Put Balkan festivals & clubs on your bucket list! The events and venues in this chapter share one thing in common: they took part in the MOST Music Festival & Club Exchange programme! In this pillar, we looked for and supported festivals and clubs from all around Europe with high-quality world music programming. In the project, tandems of Western or Central European and Southeast European festivals and clubs were paired up. Overseen by expert mentors, the pairs paid mutual visits to each other’s events, and then proceeded to exchange international artists, resulting in dozens of amazing shows all around the continent. Don’t miss out on these awesome parties and clubs, plan your Balkan road trip around them and get lost in the amazing atmosphere and music! For more information about the festivals and clubs, visit our website: 60

ATELIER CAFE Where: Cluj-Napoca, ROMANIA Atelier Cafe is located in the heart of Cluj-Napoca, in the middle of the center (old city), where a lot of tourists and students pass by. Atelier Cafe has its own strong, returning, loyal and curious audience. This allows the club to be more experimental, to bring more eclectical, lesser known bands and acts, because there is always interest for it. The café can seat 120 people, it’s perfect for a cozy jazz concert, but also great for live concerts, parties or DJ sets with 200-300 visitors. Be it soul, funk, jazz or world music, Atelier is the best place to visit. 61

D FESTIVAL Where: Dojran, NORTH MACEDONIA When: July D Festival is a unique event on the Dojran coast. Best described as a special three-day multimedia experience, contributed by the thousands of fans who visit every year, and the best artists from the local, regional and world scene. Year by year the festival sets up its tents on the Dojran coast and o昀昀ers its visitors a creative 3-day program, 昀椀lled with artistic, sport and social activities. 62

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DŽUMBUS FESTIVAL Where: Tuzla, BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA When: August DŽUMBUS Festival started when young people of the city of Tuzla wanted to organise something new, something di昀昀erent – basically something solely to their liking. Since the 昀椀rst edition seven years ago, various events took place from sports to exhibitions or even video art, but the main component has always been music. From electronic to hip-hop, local independent artists of all genres have been and continue to be the heart of DŽUMBUS. 64

ESTAM WORLD MUSIC FESTIVAL Where: Kragujevac, SERBIA When: August ESTAM is a two day world music festival that has already presented artists such as Damir Imamovic, Sona Jobarteh, Boris Kovač, Elina Duni, Naked, Oratnitza and more. After the 昀椀rst 2 winter editions, ESTAM became an open air summer festival, in 2022 held in the magical ambience of the local botanical garden.The goal of ESTAM is to promote and connect international musicians, exchange experiences and best practices and to diversify the local music scene. 65

ETNOFEST WORLD MUSIC FESTIVAL Where: Lake Palić, SERBIA When: June ETNOFEST World Music Festival, annually scheduled in June, is one of the rare world music festivals on the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe with the Balkans. Serving the 昀椀nest music to its audience for the past two decades, it brings together the local artists with their colleagues from all over the world. The pro昀椀le of the festival is rather considered as alternative and exploratory – allowing musical fusions and experiments to happen on its stages, but also highly appreciates the roots and tradition as a true value to be nurtured and preserved. 66

EXIT FESTIVAL Where: Novi Sad, SERBIA When: July EXIT is a two-time winner of the “Best Major European Festival” award. Held annually at the 18th-century colossal Petrovaradin Fortress in Novi Sad, Serbia, EXIT originated as a student movement. Over two decades, EXIT has evolved into one of the world’s most prestigious festivals, nurturing a multi-genre approach. So far, EXIT has welcomed nearly 3 million visitors from 70 di昀昀erent countries worldwide. 67

GOULASH DISKO FESTIVAL Where: Komiža, CROATIA When: September Goulash Disko Festival is a crowdfunded event, a fun party which has long been representing music genres rooted in the global underground: you will 昀椀nd Gypsy punk, latintronics, Bollywood funk, dub, ethnic, downtempo electronica, and even more here. Both well known artists and young talents play at the festival, which, in turn, helps develop the island, making the tourist season of Komiža longer, and bringing art and culture to the village. 68

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JAZZ FACTORY FESTIVAL Where: Bitola, NORTH MACEDONIA When: July In the past couple of years, Jazz Factory Festival has grown into a recognizable brand in the city of Bitola. Jazz Factory is an established festival on the Macedonian and European jazz scene, known for nurturing contemporary and progressive music with a focus on domestic and regional artists. It has been recognised by the European Association of Festivals (EFFE) with the Remarkable Arts Festival award and is also a part of the regional association of Jazz Festivals, connecting cities from Ravne to Bitola. 70

KAMIČAK ETNO FESTIVAL Where: Sinj, CROATIA When: August Kamičak Etno Festival presents a vast array of cultures and minorities through a contemporary interpretation of traditional music. Thus the festival contributes to cultural exchange by promoting solidarity and multicultural understanding. They 昀椀ght for representation of di昀昀erent cultures and geographical regions, while also promoting local musical traditions. 71

KRAJ VARDAROT JAZZ FESTIVAL Where: Skopje, NORTH MACEDONIA When: April ev n o D l i r i ©K : o t ho p Kraj Vardarot Jazz (meaning: Jazz by the Vardar River) refers to one of the most beautiful Macedonian folk songs, which takes place by the same river. It is a symbol of the festival’s healthy ambition toward developing an international event for contemporary jazz, world and classical music. The festival presents the most recent, quality productions and performances by renowned authors, alongside young and emerging talent. Kraj Vardarot Jazz is dedicated to discovering, recording, producing, releasing and promoting the best possible jazz and world music within their grasp. 72

LOKUM FEST Where: Bitola, NORTH MACEDONIA When: July Lokum Fest is a unique etno-fusion and world music festival, a three-day celebration of ethno-fusion and world music that holds a trade fair for creatives. The event’s home is an ancient, 15th century Turkish bazaar in Bitola. „Lokum” comes from an old custom: to have a co昀昀ee with your neighbours. This is a beautiful ritual of the Balkans, where people from di昀昀erent cultures, religions or classes can meet. 73

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MALOMFESZTIVÁL WINDMILL FESTIVAL Where: Vojvodina, SERBIA When: August Windmill Festival wants to break down all barriers, eliminate inner limits, banish borders between people and between countries. They want to show the unspoilt beauty of Vojvodina, Serbia, where time has stopped (or at least slowed down). The festival’s motto which was turned into a song goes like this: ”We need something old/ We need something alive/ We need some art/ We need something unreal/ we need some old, alive, unreal art/ we need something to get us from ME to US.” 75

MÉRA WORLD MUSIC FESTIVAL Where: Méra, ROMANIA When: August Méra is a mostly Hungarian village in Transylvania with a rich folk culture, some lovely old houses and home to several 昀椀ne musicians. The festival was 昀椀rst organised in 2016 and since then people from over 25 countries have visited. Each year 12-14 bands from all over the world play on the festival’s barn-stage: it’s a meeting place of local folk musicians and international world music artists. 76

METNO Where: Makarska, CROATIA When: June Metno international ethno festival is the oldest of its genre in Croatia, 昀椀rst organised in 2008. Located in Makarska, a maritime town on the Dalmatian coast, Metno already featured the biggest names in the Croatian and Balkan world music scene, as well as several groups from around the world. Workshops are a regular part of the event, promoting traditional, especially vocal music. 77

MUMUSH FESTIVAL Where: Adrianu Mare, ROMANIA When: August ”Mumus” is the Hungarian name of the ”Bogeyman” (like ‘Babau’ or ‘El Coco’). A demon used for inciting fear in children to get them to behave, ‘mumus’ has a di昀昀erent face in every culture. The festival’s name comes from the belief that everyone struggles with their inner ’mumus’ which represents all the fears they need to let go of. The organisers of this very nature-centric Transylvanian festival believe the power of art is the power of freedom over fear. The festival is completely DIY & brand-free, with an emphasis on ecological and social awareness promoted through di昀昀erent workshops & activities. 78

OLD TOWN STREET FEST Where: Mostar, BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA When: August Old Town Street Fest in Mostar is a true city-wide festival with 6-7 stages. Music, dancing and fun take over the picturesque Balkan town. Locals and tourists claim public spaces and historical monuments; they party on the bridges, caves and piazzas of Mostar’s Old Town. The festival brings music and shows right to the heart of the city and lasts for two evenings with over 20 performers and DJs. 79

PIN MUSIC CONFERENCE & SHOWCASE Where: Skopje, NORTH MACEDONIA When: November PIN Music Conference, a three-day showcase festival held in Skopje, recently marked its 10th edition, featuring over 50 performers, 70 panels, mentoring and networking sessions. Serving as a nexus for the music industry, PIN aims to be a home for all involved in the music industry, providing a springboard for artists and professionals alike. With a diverse lineup, insightful panels, it remains a pivotal platform, collaboration, growth, and the evolution of the global music landscape. 80

PORTO ETNO FESTIVAL Where: Rijeka, CROATIA When: June Porto Etno is an international world music and gastro festival that gathers hundreds of performers (musicians, dancers, chefs) every year, turning Rijeka into the epicentre of world culture for one weekend. The festival grew out of a traditional event, a folklore festival of national minorities, so Porto Etno Festival is the best example of Rijeka’s multicultural collage. 81

PRISHTINA MUSIC CONFERENCE & RAVE FESTIVAL Where: Prishtina, KOSOVO* When: November The quest of Prishtina Music Conference is to instill a healthy music culture with progressive cultural values, support of artistic e昀昀orts and expansion. The conference is a result of continuous research, travels and hard work – it took 4 years to plan the 昀椀rst edition, that was a great success with 20 international guest speakers, and 20 local speakers. * This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence. 82

SOALIVE MUSIC CONFERENCE Where: So昀椀a, BULGARIA When: October SoAlive Music Conference, the gateway to the vibrant Balkan music industry! This premier event in Bulgaria o昀昀ers a platform for fans, artists, and industry professionals. It goes into the Balkans’ rich history and current technological advances, promoting inclusivity and participation in the broader EU ecosystem. Engage in panels, seminars, and networking, fostering creativity and talent. Join us for an experience that celebrates the Balkans’ diverse music, tech innovations, and 昀椀lm industry, enhancing careers and forging lasting connections. 83

SOFIA LIVE FESTIVAL Where: So昀椀a, BULGARIA When: June So昀椀a Live Festival is a highly anticipated annual music event that takes place in So昀椀a, Bulgaria. Known for its diverse and eclectic lineup, the festival brings together renowned local and international artists from various genres, including modern Jazz, Electronic music, Hip-Hop, Rock, Funk, Punk and more. With its dynamic performances and energetic atmosphere, it has become a highlight of the summer season, attracting music enthusiasts from all over the country and beyond. Spanning across a diverse range of genres, So昀椀a Live Festival places a strong emphasis on showcasing original music crafted by talented young Bulgarian musicians with an international sound. 84

ŠPANCIRFEST Where: Varaždin, CROATIA When: August Špancirfest o昀昀ers its visitors a rich concert programme: they bring the best European and world street performers and young musicians to the city of Varaždin, a UNESCO City of Music since 2023. There are also acrobats and other entertainers, theatre performances, a wide range of children’s attractions, the festival’s innovative and creative programme features music, workshops and open-air acts. 85

TIVAT WORLD FESTIVAL Where: Tivat, MONTENEGRO When: September ic ic r u j D o k Mi : to o ph Tivat World takes place in the Boka Bay, their home is the most sunny town in Montenegro - Tivat. The lineup is mixed: many artists are local, from Montenegro, or regional, from the Balkans. The international artists come from all around the world. Tivat World is a small world in one place where you can 昀椀nd music events, street art, workshops and public debates in the spirit of the festival. 86

VRELO ZVUKA Where: Zagreb, CROATIA Vrelo Zvuka is a monthly project launched in 2017 in Mochvara Club in Zagreb, Croatia. Their most important goal is to o昀昀er a place for promotion to Croatian and Balkan performers but they also organise concerts of artists from all over the world. As a part of the program, they launched the “New Croatian Ethno Scene” concert series and they regularly hold workshops, forums and similar events. 87

WORLD MUSIC FEST ZEMAN Where: Novi Pazar, SERBIA When: July A fresh discovery amongst festivals, World Music Fest Zeman is set in the exciting Serbian cultural hub of Novi Pazar, and is curated by renowned musicians of the region. The festival’s programme is characterised by performances of outstanding guest musicians from all around the world, workshops within the festival that are open to all, as well as the “Voice of Zeman” competition for ethno and Balkan music interpretations, which receives more applications every year. 88

WORLD MUSIC FESTIVAL “POCKET GLOBE” Where: Novi Sad, SERBIA When: November Pocket Globe World Music Festival, organized by the Ring Ring Association, began its life in 2022 under the auspices of the Novi Sad - European Capital of Culture. The festival is a continuation of the concert series of the same name, which was held in 2019/2020. Some of the names that performed at the previous 2 editions are Kayhan Kalhor, Bab L’ Bluz, Monsieur Doumani, Bombino, Iva Bittova, Boris Kovač etc. Besides concerts, Pocket Globe has been o昀昀ering workshops, jam sessions, and lectures. 89

WORLD MUSIC FESTIVAL “TODO MUNDO” Where: Belgrade, SERBIA When: September Todo Mundo World Music Festival, organized by the Ring Ring Association, presents artists from all continents, be it well-known performers or hidden gems, artists from the diaspora or those who are working in the di昀케cult situation in Serbia. Besides concerts, Todo Mundo o昀昀ers other types of events every year: workshops, conferences, conversations with students, street parades etc. With its 11th edition, held in September 2023, the festival joined the 昀椀rst celebration of European Folk Day. 90

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ADRIATICO MEDITERRANEO Where: Ancona, ITALY When: August The Festival Adriatico Mediterraneo takes place every year since 2007 in Ancona, a millenary town in the east coast of Italy. The festival wants to contribute to the depiction of new sceneries of integration and cohesion by establishing a dialogue between the countries through culture with a focus in the mediterranean area. BALKABARNA FESTIVAL Where: Barcelona, SPAIN When: May The aim of BalkaBarna Festival is to make the Balkan communities residing in Barcelona and Catalonia more visible, to sustain and consolidate the Balkan music scene in the city, and to reinforce the historical tie existing between Barcelona and the Balkans. BALKAN TRAFIK Where: Brussels, BELGIUM When: April With 20 years’ experience, Balkan Tra昀椀k is an annual multicultural festival in Brussels that brings communities together and breaks down barriers through various art forms, including music, 昀椀lm, dance, gastronomy, debates, street art and intercultural dialogue. 92

ADRIATICO MEDITERRANEOBÁNKITÓ FESTIVAL Where: Bánk, HUNGARY When: July Bánkitó Festival is an underground music and cultural festival with a strong social mission. Nestled around the breathtaking Bánki Lake, Hungary’s “Biggest Small Festival” is a melting pot of musical genres to create a sonic experience like no other. They have a selection of popular and underground bands from Hungary and international musicians each year. BALKABARNA FESTIVALETNOSOI! Where: Helsinki, FINLAND When: November Etnosoi! Festival brings together well known artists and new discoveries from all over the world. Orgnized in Finland since 1988 by the Global Music Centre music institute; next to the concerts the festival also o昀昀ers seminars, lectures, workshops and master classes. Etnosoi! is a member of the Forum of Worldwide Music Festivals FWMF. BALKAN TRAFIKEUROFONIK Where: Nantes, FRANCE When: March Settled in Nantes (France) and bordering cities, Eurofonik highlights the amazing diversity of European folk music. The event is mainly focused on the most creative part of this music, including many crossovers with jazz, electro, rock... 93

FENGAROS FESTIVAL Where: Kato Drys, CYPRUS When: August Fengaros Festival is widely known for its multifaceted lineups and unique setting at the picturesque village of Kato Drys, Cyprus. This distinct combination of top-drawer global music and breathtaking scenery is the perfect recipe for a holistic festival experience for the audience. FIRA MEDITERRÀNIA Where: Manresa, SPAIN When: October Fira Mediterrània de Manresa is the strategic fair of the Catalan Government for artistic proposals which use root sources, tradition and popular culture as the drivers of creativity. This is a multidisciplinary fair whose programme is divided into three main itineraries: music, dance and oral storytelling. GLATT&VERKEHRT Where: Krems, AUSTRIA When: July Since 1997 the annual Glatt&Verkehrt festival initiates distinctive and exciting music projects from all corners of the globe to visit the Wachau region and Krems (Lower Austria). For its 28th edition Glatt&Verkehrt invites a total of 20 ensembles and soloists and their contemporary musical ideas. 94

FENGAROS FESTIVALGLOBALTICA WORLD CULTURES FESTIVAL Where: Gdynia, POLAND When: July The main goal of Globaltica is to show multicultural contents and coming closer to traditions. The festival aims to show all of these as a living culture. It features contemporary artists inspired by tradition and roots of the places they come from, “translated” FIRA MEDITERRÀNIAinto a modern language of artistic and social communication. HAAPAVESI FOLK MUSIC FESTIVAL Where: Haapavesi, FINLAND When: June Haapavesi Folk Music Festival is one of the most acclaimed folk music events in Finland. The programme of the festival consists of high quality Finnish and GLATT&VERKEHRTinternational folk music and world music, alongside with some classical, jazz, pop and cross-genre acts. KOKOPELLI Where: Gullegem, BELGIUM When: May Free two-day worldly festival at Gullegem, Belgium. Global sounds, animation and atmosphere for the whole family! 95

MIKOŁAJKI FOLKOWE Where: Lublin, POLAND When: December The 昀椀rst folk music festival in Poland consists of: concerts, competition for young and debuting artists, 昀椀lm presentations, meetings, artistic workshops, theatre performances, presentations of projects, happenings, visual arts exhibitions, and a craft fair. MUSICASTRADA Where: Tuscany, ITALY When: July Musicastrada Festival is an itinerant event focused on music and territory promotion in Tuscany. Concerts are located in small or large squares with a daily audience from 100 to 800 people, hosting international artists, from world to contemporary music. MŰVÉSZETEK VÖLGYE / VALLEY OF ARTS Where: HUNGARY When: July The Valley of Arts is Hungary’s largest all-arts and multi genre festival, which o昀昀ers more than 2000 programmes in three beautiful villages of the Balaton-Felvidék region, for 10 days, transforming streets, building and institutions into concert halls, galleries and theatres. 96

MIKOŁAJKI FOLKOWENIGHTS IN OLD LJUBLJANA TOWN INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL Where: Ljubljana, SLOVENIA When: August The Nights in Old Ljubljana Town International Festival evolved into the largest street festival in the Slovenian capital. The three-day World music and jazz oriented festival attracts over 40.000 visitors each year. MUSICASTRADAPANNONICA FESTIVAL Where: Poprad Valley, POLAND When: August Located in the Polish Carpathians, the Pannonica Festival is a place to meet and celebrate contact with the living culture of New Europe and nature. It is an authentic, multidisciplinary, non-commercial, pulsating festival bringing together the lovers of Pannonian culture in its varieties. MŰVÉSZETEK VÖLGYE / VALLEY OF ARTSRESONATOR Where: Odense, DENMARK When: November Resonator Festival makes your world bigger through a musical world tour in Odense. In just 3 years we have presented acts from 48 di昀昀erent countries! Resonator challenges the audience’s musical taste and understanding of the world around them. 97

STREET MODE FESTIVAL Where: Thessaloniki, GREECE When: September Street Mode Festival is an annual music, art and sports festival held in Thessaloniki since 2009. It is the largest festival of its kind in Greece, reaching thousands of visitors, with a program that includes lots of musical stages and street culture events. TRANSFORM – TRONDHEIM WORLD FESTIVAL Where: Trondheim, NORWAY When: September Transform – Trondheim World Festival, runs in the autumn with concerts, exhibitions, 昀椀lms, seminars, talks, workshops, street art, theatre and other artforms. We have a large international collaboration with European countries and also with countries in Asia, Africa, and South America. TREFPUNT FESTIVAL Where: Ghent, BELGIUM When: July Trefpunt Festival is the soul and heart of the Ghent Festivities, a huge city event attracting up to 2 million people during 10 days. Created by folk singer Walter De Buck in 1970, Trefpunt presents a wide diversity of music genres, dance, street theatre, circus, installations, debates and literature. 98

STREET MODE FESTIVALTZIGANIE Where: Seissan, FRANCE When: April Main Balkan & Gypsy music festival in France, happening in the village of Seissan close to Toulouse, since 2008. VILJANDI FOLK MUSIC FESTIVAL TRANSFORM – TRONDHEIM WORLD FESTIVALWhere: Viljandi, ESTONIA When: July The folk music festival taking place in Viljandi Castle Hills and city center is the ultimate expression of the unique way of thinking that values tradition, heritage and local identity. Viljandi Folk Music Festival with more than 75 concerts and various additional programme has become one of the largest in the Baltic and Nordic countries. TREFPUNT FESTIVALZVUK FOR ŠTIAVNICA Where: Banska Stiavnica, SLOVAKIA When: October The goal of the Zvuk for Štiavnica is to popularize world music and jazz and present them in non-traditional forms. Music reaches people through atypical Štiavnica concert venues and also in absolutely new locations: in combination with the musical genres of fusion or with new technological procedures. 99

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MEET THE FUTURE ACTORS OF THE MUSIC INDUSTRY! Organisers, producers, booking agents were all welcome as participants in the Management Training of MOST. These emerging music industry professionals will represent the region on the global market, therefore deserve training and resources. Although the Balkan world music is a treasure trove of untapped potential, artists outside of the European Union are often less connected to Western Europe. During the programme, participants were able to acquire new skills and professional tools to strengthen music industry relations between the poles. To achieve this goal, they had the opportunity to participate in the training course of the programme, get valuable experience as trainees at one of the partner organisations of the project, and build new connections with prominent European music professionals and artists from the Balkans. Meet 20 out of 80 managers who participated in the traineeship programme, so you recognize them at an upcoming music event. For more information about the managers, visit our website: 102

Aleksandra Pavlović Serbia Cultural Manager / Music Program Editor Traineeship: BOZAR | November 2022 - January 2023 Borislav Petrov Bulgaria Cultural Manager Traineeship: Bulgarian Music Association | March - Apr 2023 Danilo Grbić Serbia Project Manager / Digital Marketer / Producer / Educator Traineeship: Piranha Arts - WOMEX | October 2021 Dino Chupevski North Macedonia Producer / Director Traineeship: Piranha Arts - WOMEX | August - September 2022 Emine Sadka Bulgaria Festival Organiser Traineeship: Jaya The Cat - band | March - June 2023 Fani Solomun Croatia Musician / Artistic Director Traineeship: European Music Council | April - June 2023 Georgi Popov Bulgaria Cultural Manager Traineeship: Bulgarian Music Association | April - May 2021 103

Ivan Blažinović Croatia Booking Agent Traineeship: Glitterbeat Records | June - July 2023 Jovana Lukić Croatia Cultural Manager / Festival Organiser / Booker Traineeship: Hangvető | January - February 2023 Jozsef Halmen Romania Booking Agent / Festival Organiser / Promoter / Musician Traineeship: Hangvető | November - December 2022 Katerina Dimitrovska North Macedonia Artist Manager / Musician Traineeship: Bulgarian Music Association | October 2023 Maja Vujačić Montenegro Cultural Manager / Producer Traineeship: Piranha Arts - WOMEX | April - May 2023 Marin Bošnjak Bosnia and Herzegovina Cultural & Production Manager Traineeship: Password Production | November 2021 Natalija Čarija Serbia/Germany Event Producing Assistant Traineeship: Bulgarian Music Association | October 2023 104

Niya Petrova Bulgaria Manager/ Organiser Traineeship: Bulgarian Music Association | October - November 2022 Ramona Monja Kochishka North Macedonia PR & Marketing Traineeship: SHIP Festival | August - September 2023 Răzvan Roșu Romania Festival Organiser / Cultural Manager / Anthropologist Traineeship: VLACH | August 2023 So昀椀a Hussein Bulgaria / Somalia Photojournalist / Band Manager Traineeship: Songlines | April - December 2023 Stanislav Drča Serbia Producer / Organiser Traineeship: Mladinski Kulturni Centar | April - May 2023 Zsó昀椀a Szerda Serbia Festival Organiser / Photographer / Cultural Manager Traineeship: Hangvető | October 2021 105

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CREATIVE MINDS FROM THE BALKANS Discover the projects of MOST Music’s Urban Project Hub! In this two-phase incubator programme the goal was to boost cooperation in cities between policy- makers and urban creatives across the Balkan region. Let’s meet the 12 Urban Creatives selected from the total of 21 participants in the pillar, who completed a mini-project during their time in the programme. Urban Project Hub supported music-related projects that boost the city-level or regional music scene or music market. Selected participants – aka Urban Creatives – could realise art and community projects with the 昀椀nancial and professional support of MOST, connecting the music sector and urban communities in a unique way. The o昀昀ered training, mentoring and networking opportunities helped them realise their dreams: creative camps; raising awareness in the independent music scene; or organising a festival showcasing young local artists. Let’s dive into the magical projects created by these high-impact visionaries! For more information about the Urban Project Hub participants, visit our website: 108

Street Delivery Izabella Kiskasza Romania Street Delivery was an event series reducing car tra昀케c and o昀昀ering up space for pedestrians via collaborative events. Izabella’s goal was to create special spaces where young artists and community organizations could perform in public. Music played and enjoyed on the streets involved the community in the creative act, creating stronger bonds. Contemporary Jazz and Beyond Vasil Hajigrudev Bulgaria Vasil’s mini-project was an ingenious dual festival between So昀椀a and Novi Sad, Serbia thanks to the collaboration of musicians from the two cities: Dragon’s Fuel, and Beleva & Hajigrudev. The concerts took place in iconic venues that were not originally intended for live music performances. The unusual venues added an extra layer to the experience and helped direct attention to these urban spaces. The Audiovisual Harmony Project Stefan Momikj North Macedonia This project explored a secretive spot in Skopje, located in the city centre within the scope of the Old Bazaar. Stefan and his partner, David Nikolovski created a one-evening festival drawing bridges between the established and the new. The visuals were accompanied by live music composed and conducted by Antonie Veskovski, who created a piece especially for the occasion, inspired by the meeting of old and new at Suli An. 109

TAKT Festival Jelena Božić Serbia As a head organizer with Kulturanova, Jelena Božić succeeded with the help of MOST to continue the decade-long TAKT project of promoting young singer-songwriters from the region and beyond who create outside of the usual commercial/pop standards. The festival featured an impressive 150+ artists: 昀椀lmmakers, musicians,visual artists, as well as talks on contemporary topics, such as women in the cultural industry. Northeastern Bosnia Artistic Alliance and Sound Engineering Workshops Anes Husanović Bosnia and Hercegovina Anes Husanović is well underway to complete his vision of an artistically united Northeastern Bosnia. He organised workshops, spanning various genres, where participants could attain practical skills such as: promotion, event planning and sound engineering. His workshops fostered community among young creatives as well as endow them with ready-to-apply knowledge. ESTAM World Music Festival Aleksandra Pavlović Serbia During the pandemic, the 2021 ESTAM festival not only kept up its mission of bringing world music to a Kragujevac stage, but also helped begin what could be a permanent revival of the Arsenal, a long-forgotten cultural landmark. Apart from entertaining the public, the festival also succeeded in its goal to connect international musicians and industry folks, setting the scene for an exchange of experiences and best practices. 110

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SOULx3000 – Tradition Reimagined Nikola Rajovic Montenegro For his project Nikola envisioned two things: the creation of an electro-pop single combining Montenegrin and international urban sounds; and a series of workshops on music production. Both through the eclectic genre of the recon昀椀gured “Još ne sviće rujna zora” and through the practical song production workshops, Nikola hoped to bring young listeners and artists into the foreground of the Montenegrin music scene. Empowering the indepentend music scene in Bitola Todor Ivanovski North Macedonia Empowering the independent music scene in Bitola, “Di昀昀erent but equal” was a unique project initiative in the region, with the overall goal of improving the challenging position of artists in the independent music scene. The tools activated by the workshop included self-organization, capacity building and establishing permanent partnership with local self-government. The process involved mobilizing the target group/independent music scene, the decision-makers from the local self-government, and cultural institutions. Mal Fest II Veton Kastrati Kosovo* Vetron Kastrati, a well-known community organizer and youth activist in Malisheva, Kosovo, used support from MOST to signi昀椀cantly expand his annual “Mal Fest”—an outdoor music festival dedicated not only to showcasing young local artists, but also to providing a thrilling atmosphere for young audience members. Veton hoped to put Malisheva on the map, and to create an event that impacted locals. * This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence. 112

DUK Intro Strahinja Babic Serbia DUK Intro was a new branch of the DUK festival, a separate music event dedicated to the local alternative music scene. The 昀椀rst edition took place in front of the abandoned factory during the mural painting process on a defunct 34-meter-high silo. A live alternative music event with regional bands revived the local alternative music scene, and created a new venue for alternative culture. Funkylvania Krisztina Koszorus Romania Funkylvania functioned as a creative space where musicians could create music together. In its 昀椀rst season it functioned as a weekly live video show on Youtube, encouraging collaboration between bands. In its second season it functioned as a creative camp, where musicians from di昀昀erent ethnic minorities of Romania created music and recorded audio and video on the spot. An important addition to this second season was the launch of a musical multilingual podcast under the name Funkylvania Talks. Folk Rocks Altin Gjoni Albania Folk Rocks was an EU-funded project, with the goal of bringing back Albanian traditional music to the mainstream through Live Studio Sessions of reimagined Albanian folk songs by emerging local & international artists from the UK and Europe. It created an industry-standard online presence and digital campaign, which involved artists and music professionals; and created a blueprint of one of the 昀椀rst online folk music promotional campaigns in Albania. It all culminated in a live show named “Echoes,” blending the modern and traditional nature of the project. 113

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photo: Alek Pesic WOMBA SHOWCASE PROGRAMME ON EXIT FESTIVAL IN 2022 First edition of WOMBA Balkan music showcase program at EXIT Festival that featured many MOST Artists too - Almir Meskovic & Daniel Lazar duo, Oratnitza, Shkodra Elektronike, E.U.E.R.P.I. and more. pphhoottoo: E: Erriic vc vaan Nn Niieeuuwwllaannd - Wd - WOOMMEEXX BALKAN:MOST NIGHT AT WOMEX ‘22 A special evening dedicated to MOST 昀椀lled the o昀昀WOMEX stage in 2022, Lisbon. Three amazing artists of the Balkan Music Export programme showcased their talent: Corina Sîrghi și Taraful Jean Americanu (RO), Perija (MK) and Oratnitza (BG). DIVANHANA WINS SONGLINES’ BEST GROUP AWARD IN 2023 The Bosnian band, Divanhana, supported by MOST’s Balkan Music Export scheme, received the Best Group Award for their Album ‘Zavrzlama’ by one of the world music’s most prestigious voices, Songlines Magazine. 116

FESTIVAL MEETUP AT SEE (SOUTH-EASTERN EUROPE) FESTIVAL IN 2023 Dissemination event for Festival & Club Exchange Pillar participants at SEE Festival, in Brussels, hosted by BOZAR. Creative minds from the cultural scene gathered to learn from each other and strengthen the network of European festivals and clubs. photo: Márton Pesthy RECOGNITION IN INTERNATIONAL PRESS & MEDIA MOST has received illustrious press and media coverage in Europe and beyond - Rolling Stone, IQ Magazine, The Brooklyn Rail, MusikWoche and more. 117

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BALKAN:MOST, the grand 昀椀nale of MOST aimed to show the true colours of the Balkans and create a strong bridge all over Europe. Completed with a showcase programme and music industry conference, it served as a meeting point between Southeast and Western Europe - both in terms of music and music professionals. The festival was a celebration in style – over 7500 visitors enjoyed Balkan music in the picturesque castle district of Veszprém, the centre of Veszprém-Balaton 2023 European Capital of Culture. In a city of 60 000, 24 jury-selected MOST showcases were packed, new deals struck and collaborations born; and headliners like Manu Chao and Dubioza Kolektiv 昀椀lled Veszprém’s squares and streets to the brim. We hosted many MOST participants and all together 300 international professionals at the showcase and conference. The 3-day street 昀椀esta celebrating the living heritage, fermenting talent and future potential of Balkan music, BALKAN:MOST strengthened the sense of community MOST meticulously laid down. s c á v o t K n i l á © B

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ALBANIA CROATIA ARTISTS ARTISTS Linda Rukaj Balkalar Shkodra Elektronike Dina e Mel Dunjaluk BOSNIA PJEV FESTIVALS & HERZEGOVINA Goulash Disko Festival Kamičak Etno Festival ARTISTS Metno Almir Meskovic & Daniel Porto Etno Festival Lazar Duo Špancirfest Divanhana Vrelo Zvuka Lakiko NAiRUZ VLADIMIR KOSOVO* FESTIVALS ARTISTS Džumbus Festival Agona Shporta Old Town Street Fest Besart Zhuja Gipsy Groove BULGARIA FESTIVALS Prishtina Music Conference ARTISTS & Rave Festival DANTCHEV:DOMAIN E.U.E.R.P.I. Flying Nomads MONTENEGRO Oratnitza FESTIVALS FESTIVALS Tivat World Festival SoAlive Music Conference So昀椀a Live Festival 122

NORTH SERBIA MACEDONIA ARTISTS Alice in WonderBand ARTISTS Almir Meskovic & Daniel Baklava Lazar Duo Kalata Lenhart Tapes Perija Naked Zarina Prvasevda Rodjenice Shira U’t昀椀la FESTIVALS D Festival FESTIVALS Jazz Factory Festival ESTAM Kraj Vardarot Jazz Festival World Music Festival Lokum Fest ETNOFEST Pin Music Conference Showcase World Music Festival KOSOVO* EXIT Festival ROMANIA Malomfesztivál / Windmill Festival ARTISTS World Music Festival Corina Sîrghi și Taraful “Pocket Globe” Jean Americanu World Music Festival GRAIU “Todo Mundo” Koszika World Music Fest FESTIVALS Zeman Atelier Café Méra World Music Festival MONTENEGRO Mumush Festival FESTIVALS Tivat World Festival * This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence. 123


80+ Showcases in 10+ countries 40+ Videoclips produced 10+ MOST panels and discussions 3 MOST CDs 1 Balkan World Music Guide MOST MADE THE BALKAN MORE CONNECTED 70+ Music experts involved from 20 countries 20+ Traineeships in 10 countries 9 Training sessions in 4 countries 50+ Exchanges among festivals and clubs 125

MOST PROJECT TEAM MOST Music is operated by a network of partners, the consortium is led by the Budapest-based Hangvető. The core team of MOST Music: Klára Nagy Erzsébet Levandovsky Project Lead Festival & Club Exchange Pillar Coordinator Balázs Weyer Eszter Barna Head of Music Balkan Music Export Pillar Coordinator András Lelkes Alíz Csák Management Traineeships Coordinator CEO, Hangvető Dorottya Papp András Sőrés Project Consultant Project Manager Anna Isola Anna Dupák International Consultant Communication Project Manager Sára Venczel Ella Csarnó Communication Lead Former Communication Project Manager 126

Erzsébet Levandovsky Festival & Club Exchange Pillar Coordinator Eszter Barna Balkan Music Export Pillar Coordinator Alíz Csák Management Traineeships Coordinator Dorottya Papp Project Manager Anna Dupák Communication Project Manager Ella Csarnó Former Communication Project Manager


Balkan World Music Guide 2024 - Page 131


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