Guca Trumpet Festival Starts Tomorrow! (video)

The biggest trumpet and brass band festival in the world starts tomorrow and will last until August 11th.

The Guča trumpet festival, also known as the Dragačevo Assembly is an annual brass band festival held in the town of Guča, near the city of Čačak in the Dragačevo region of western Serbia. Guča is a three-hour bus journey from Belgrade.

600,000 visitors make their way to the town of 2,000 people every year, both from Serbia and abroad.

Elimination heats earlier in the year mean only a few dozen bands get to compete. Guča’s official festival is split into three parts. Friday’s opening concert, Saturday night celebrations and Sunday’s competition.

Friday’s concerts are held at the entrance to the official Guča Festival building. This event features previous winners, each band getting to play three tunes while folk dancers, all kitted out in bright knitting patterns, dance kolos and oros in front of a hyped-up audience.

An English party site,, has named Guča the best festival in the world.

“Forget Glastonbury, Reading, Burning Man and Coachella: the wildest music festival on earth is a cacophonic and crazy brass band festival that takes place every summer in the tiny Serbian town of Guča in the western region of Dragačevo.”

The traditional Dragačevo trumpet – its cult kept alive for nearly two centuries regardless of political and social considerations – has with time become world-renowned. It is owing to the trumpet that the name of Serbia has resounded worldwide, in all the continents. Some orchestras, when they appear on stage, whether for official competition national dress, the authentic and indigenous dances and other folk-inspired elements, coupled with music, have become an integral part of national gathering.

The virtuoso music performers, the trumpet players to the paradox and make the story more authentic – are for the most part fully self-taught. They play by ear and quite spontaneously, relying on their musical memory; they play from the heart and soul, and their music reaches out to listeners precisely for this quality.

The Guča Assembly of Trumpet Players continues to grow year after year: today, this musical feast of recognizable national skills is more popular, more diverse and bigger than ever before.

The first Dragačevo Assembly of Trumpet Players was held on October 16, 1961 in the yard of the Church of Sts. Michael and Gabriel in Guča. Initially, it was a very modest Assembly – almost subversive for the prevailing political circumstances of that time. However, the Assembly gradually grew and expanded its, one might say, magical influence, and over the past ten or so years has become the folk remained its key symbol and raison d’etre, it is no longer held solely for the trumpet players. It grew into an Assembly of toastmasters, painters, song “Sa Ovčara i Kablara”, marks the beginning of the festival each year. Some church music festivals notwithstanding, the Assembly of Trumpet Players is the best known event of this kind extending uninterruptedly for 43 years and attracting guests and musicians alike from every continent. Trumpet players and folk song and dance groups from around the world deem it a great honor to be invited to the Assembly, and the number of visitors increases with each coming year.

With considerable experience in organizing Assemblies, today the traditionally hospitable Guča has earned its place on the map of world music festivals, inviting high interest from ethno music lovers, and deservedly so. As an internationally recognized trumpet capital, and a singular corner of positive energy, a place with accumulated joy, gaiety and spontaneity, coupled with the piercing yet gentle sound of the trumpet, Guča is a place of catharsis of the heart and soul while the festival lasts. All this is more than enough to attract visitors to Guča from Mexico, Spain, Greece, Denmark, China and other countries. The names of Boban Marković, Ekrem Sajdić, Elvis Ajdinović, Fejat and Zoran Sejdić have carried the glory of the Serbian trumpet across the world.

Marija Karan Will Play In Movie ”Tesla”

by Marcus V Agar

Serbian actress Marija Karan will embody the feelings of the many women who fell for the charms of celebrated Serb scientist Nikola Tesla, when she joins the cast of the biopic, TESLA.

The well-loved actress who has been made a star through a string of film and TV roles in her native Serbia, as well as in Hollywood films such as The Rite, is thrilled to join the cast of award winners.

“I am eager to start shooting on this film about our most prominent scientist,’ said Marija, who will shoot in Serbia, alongside Branko Tomović as Nikola Tesla, and with dialogue in Serbian.


“Michael Anton has written a script that is authentic and honest. I like that he felt a need to understand the importance of Tesla’s origin as an immigrant in the US who, despite all problems, remained true to himself and persistent. This is not a typical American film.”

Character Created out of Tesla’s Great Conflict

In the film TESLA (@TeslaTheMovie), produced by Silvermask Films, Marija will play Braka, an amalgam character based on various real women. “In my research of Tesla I found a great conflict when it came to the idea of marriage, or even relationships for that matter,’ said director Michael Anton.

“He viewed them as a grand distraction providing an inventor with barriers that would inhibit him from reaching his highest potential. With that said, his good looks and fame made him susceptible to the interest of many potential female suitors, although it appeared he never changed his resolve on the matter.”

While the character of Braka is fictional, she is based on fact, as Michael explained: “Braka is one of only a few non-historical figures I included in this film as she encompasses a lifetime of women rejected by Tesla due to his unwavering commitment to science.

“I included her at a time in Nikola’s life in which I felt he was most vulnerable: the two weeks he spent in Gospić after his mother’s death. The relationship is circumstantial and not pursued by either Braka or Tesla. As it surfaces it is abruptly halted in a way that mirrors the very nature of Tesla.”

TESLA: The Genius No One Understood

It was the quality and integrity of the script that attracted Marija to the film, as she explained: “Michael tries to tell the truth in a subjective and personal manner. His focus is on the significance of Tesla’s achievements for modern life, his will and potential to inspire and encourage people to persist in their efforts and perhaps, make their own contribution to the future generations.”

A key aim of the film, which is scheduled to shoot in Serbia and the United States, in the October/November, is to broaden the appreciation of Tesla’s work outside of his Balkan homelands, which appeals to Marija. “Nikola Tesla was often called a ‘genius no one understood‘. That is why I am looking forward to participating in this film, which will help viewers learn a lot more about Nikola Tesla and his work. I hope that my role will bring Tesla’s commitment to and great sacrifice for the love for science closer to viewers.”

As Marija’s career has taken off on the domestic as well as international markets, her star has continued to rise, both professionally and personally. After making her debut in the film Kad porastem biću Kengur (When I Grow Up, I’ll Be a Kangaroo), Belgrade-born Marija, aged 31, has gone on to appear in regional films such as the Serbian thriller Četvrti čovek (The Fourth Man), Sedam i Po and Sevdah for Karim.

Marija Karan: An International Icon of the Balkans

In 2011, Marija’s Hollywood career kicked off, as she appeared alongside Jean-Claude van Damme in American actioner Assassination Games, and then with Sir Anthony Hopkins and Rutger Hauer in modern horror, The Rite.

Marija also appeared in British drama Taxi Man with Branko Tomović, the London-based Serb who will play Tesla in the movie. “I am sure that Branko is an excellent choice for the main role,’ she said. “His talent and career so far confirm it.”

For writer and director Michael Anton, Marija was an ideal choice was casting the role. “Marija Karan has an incredibly striking screen presence, one that I feel leans more to her quality as an actress than her beauty,’ he said.

“Her performance in The Rite was brief but powerful and I believe that, in all her roles, she consistently finds ways to capture the attention of the audience with more than just her looks. Marija and Branko have wonderful on-screen chemistry, as shown in Taxi Man, and I am sure that will resonate into our film as well.”

In TESLA, Marija will join fellow Serbian actresses Mirjana Karanović (When Father was Away on Business and Grbavica/Esma’s Secret) and Hristina Popović (Circles / Krugovi, and The Parade).

Hristina Popovic Will Play Nikola Tesla’s Sister In Biopic

by Marcus V Agar

Hristina Popović, the acclaimed star of celebrated films Circles and The Parade (Parada), is the latest addition to a cast of award-winners for the Nikola Tesla biopic, TESLA (@TeslaTheMovie).

Hristina, who has become a familiar name at international film festivals for lauded roles in some of the Balkans biggest movies, will play Tesla’s sister Angelina in the most talked-about film in the Balkans.

Most recently, Hristina, aged 31, has impressed audiences and critics for her role in Circles / Krugovi, from director Srdjan Golubović. As well as being awarded at the Berlin Film Festival, this film based on the tragic story of a young Bosnian Serb Srdjan Aleksić, won the Audience Award at the Sofia International Film Festival, and the Special Jury Prize at America’s Sundance Film Festival.

While Nikola Tesla is considered one of the world’s greatest scientists, responsible for some of the most significant discoveries, his name remains unfamiliar to many outside of his Balkan homelands. Director Michael Anton aims to put that right with a script that sheds light on the Serb scientist’s time in the US and explores his relationship with Thomas Edison.

Star of Award-Winning Films Praises TESLA Script

It was the quality of Michael’s script that attracted Hristina to the film. “I am very excited about working on TESLA,’ she said. “In his excellent script, Michael has managed very well to maintain the integrity of Nikola Tesla. It is an honour to contribute to improving the awareness of such an important and great man as the genius inventor, Nikola Tesla.”

For Hristina, a film such as TESLA is long overdue. “I think that Nikola Tesla is a new Prometheus,’ she said. “He is the man who brought light to our civilisation, not only because he gave us Alternating Current, but because of his wise thoughts and numerous patents, which we are still using on a daily basis without even knowing that he was the man who invented it. He was a man who was far ahead of his time. Tesla was a man whose soul and mind danced with the Universe.”

Belgrade actress Hristina has built an illustrious career of often quite bold roles in award-winning films. From an early part in the unforgiving Kordon (2002) to The Parade (2011), the controversial satire on Belgrade Pride and the Practical Guide to Belgrade with Singing and Crying (2013).

Tesla’s Women of Power and Unflinching Character

Michael Anton, writer and director of TESLA said: “We are happy to add such a deservedly celebrated actress such as Hristina to our film. Like Mirjana, Hristina is a woman of power and unflinching character. She will represent the strength of the woman in the Tesla family. I have no doubt that, as with her performances in The Parade and Circles, Hristina will bring a powerful presence to the screen.”

Michael is so determined to get closer to the heart of Tesla that, he will shoot some scenes with Serbian dialogue. “Tesla was a Serb,’ he said. “When speaking with his mother and sisters, Tesla will speak Serbian to help recreate the essence of the man.”

Hristina is the latest to join the cast of TESLA, alongside other actors and actresses whose work has been awarded internationally. Serb actor Branko Tomović, who will play Nikola Tesla, has received a number of international awards, while fellow Serbian actress Mirjana Karanović (Djuka Tesla) starred in Emir Kusturica’s Oscar-nominated movie When Father was Away on Business (1985), the awarded Here and There, and has been especially lauded for her much talked-about role in Grbavica/Esma’s Secret.

“I very much look forward to working with Michael and acting alongside Mirjana Karanovic, one of our greatest actresses of all time,’ said Hristina.

TESLA, produced by Silvermask Films, will shoot in Serbia and the United States in October/November, for release in summer 2014.

“I enjoy every new cast member that comes on board this film,’ said Michael. “We have been privileged to attract such great talent with such memorable performances in their storied careers. With that said, I am sure that everyone is waiting to see who we cast for Thomas Edison. We think we have found the perfect actor for the role but, for now, everyone will have to be patient a little longer.”

Serbian Folklore Dance Fair In Nis

Nis, town in south of Serbia will from 17th to 19th of May be host of 18th European fair of Serbian folklore dance from diaspora and Serbs in the region. The town will be host to around 2.000 dancers from nearly fifty ensembles.

Young folklore dancers of Serbian origin who live in Europe will present the tradition and folklore art in the hall Cair in Nis, where they will compete on the 18th of May, while the best of them will be presented with awards the following day.

Most ensembles, 16 of them, will arrive from Germany, 10 will come from Austria, 9 from Switzerland, 7 from Slovenia, while the competition will also be attended by groups from France, Montenegro, Republika Srpska, Romania and Sweden.

This manifestation is organized by Council of European gatherings, Student culture center Nis, Folklore dance ensemble “Oro” and Tourist organization Nis, sponsored by the City of Nis.

source: Juzne vesti

Good Luck Tonight In Malme!

Serbian representatives at this year’s contest for best European song, “Moje 3” will perform tonight in Malme Arena their song “Ljubav je svuda”, composed by Sasa Milosevic Mare.

Their performance will be the 16th and last in the first semi-final evening.

Viewers from following countries will be able to vote for Serbia in the first semi-finals: Great Britain, Sweden, Italy, Denmark, Croatia, Ukraine, Holland, Austria, Slovenia, Estonia, Russia, Lithuania, Ireland, Belarus, Montenegro, Belgium and Moldova.

Salma Hayek To Film In Serbia

Actress Salma Hayek joined the crew of the movie Everly by director Joe Lynch, which will be filmed this summer in Belgrade, reports Deadline.

This movie is an action thriller about a woman fighting off killers being sent by her former husband, who is a mafia boss. Salma Hayek will have the lead role in the movie.

Beside the large number of Hollywood movies that were filmed in Serbia in the past three years due to good infrastructure and cheaper prices than those in the region, Everly could attract also new movie producers willing to shoot in Serbia.

What movie stars such as Ralph Fiennes and Kevin Costner pointed out as Serbia’s advantage is non-intrusive and natural relation of the Serbs towards the movie stars, as well as great national cuisine.

Former Kraljevo Mayor Taken In For Questioning

Due to suspicion that they deprived the town budget of Kraljevo, town in central Serbia, of more than 102 million dinars, (0,9 million euros), fifteen persons were taken in for questioning this morning.

Among them is also the former mayor of Kraljevo Ljubisa Simovic.

They are suspected of malfeasance in office during the construction of prefabricated homes in Kraljevo after the earthquake in 2010.

Bocelli In Belgrade Tonight

One of the most famous modern tenors Andrea Bocelli will perform tonight in Kombank Arena in Belgrade.

Bocelli will be accompanied on the scene by Belgrade Symphony Orchestra with around 60 members and a choir of around 100 members while the conducting will be in hands of Marcello Rota, one of the most famous Italian conductors.

It is expected that beside songs from his last album “Passione”, Bocelli will perform a number of arias with which he achieved world fame.

Moje 3 Travel To Malme

Group “Moje 3”, which will represent Serbia in Eurosong contest, have traveled with the team of assistants to Sweden.

“Moje 3” will only have one day of rest after arriving to Malme, because already on Tuesday they will have their first rehearsal, which will be their first real encounter with the long awaited “Eurovision dream”.

Serbia’s representatives will compete for entering grand finals of 58th Eurosong at the first semi-finals evening on May 14th.

Viewers from following countries will be able to vote for Serbia in the first semi-finals: Great Britain, Sweden, Italy, Denmark, Croatia, Ukraine, Holland, Austria, Slovenia, Estonia, Russia, Lithuania, Ireland, Belarus, Montenegro, Belgium and Moldova.