Like the river that connects Graz with this region, the Balkans are in constant flow. This year the MURTON Graz Festival is dedicated to the Balkans and its cultural influences on our everyday life, also here in Graz. The story of our relationship of the past 100 years is so diverse and versatile as hardly any other.
When Croatia entered the EU, this region moved another step closer without ever having been distant. The Balkans have undergone a complete reconstruction, which the thirty-somethings of today have grown up with, but have never forgotten their roots and traditions of the last centuries which have somehow also formed us. The cultural, musical and also historical commonalities – but also our exciting differences – are the focus of this year’s MURTON Graz.

The city tour AMAZING GRAZ…HAS ITS OWN BALKAN is dedicated to the search for cultural and religious traces of the Balkans in Graz. This year’s Murton poetry slam, themed BALKAN CUP will be a special friendly game connecting languages and countries, taking place at the island in the Mur. The open air movie programme BALKAN SCREENING will screen awarded movies, presenting the emotionality of the people of the Balkans to the audiences in Graz. Additionally the multilingual reading with musical interludes CROSS-OVER BALKAN perceives itself as crossing literal and musical frontiers.

The 17th of August opens already in the morning and is sprinkled with delicacies. For starters we have a spicy Brass Band performing at the LENDPLATZ and the final course happens to be an invigorating Balkan charcoal barbecue at the restaurant Speisesaal Hotel Wiesler. On the menu are ćevapčići served with Balkan-Beats by DJ Nevenko on the turntables. This year the festival crosses the river Mur and can also be found in the AUGARTEN where it stages POLKA REMIXED. It explores new places up- and downstream and brings world music to cities like Judenburg and Gabersdorf.

The concerts at Mariahilferplatz are free, like last year, an invitation to end a perfect summer night with a little rhythm and a little dance. Groovy ska, jazzy solos, gipsy funk and beatboxing – musical lines are crossed and that can not be overheard. The NIGHTLINE at the iKU is hosted by Tiefpaterre. Let’s dance is the theme on the night of the 24th of August – the final showdown with Bauchklang on stage at the Mariahilferplatz and the showdown party at the ppc afterwards.

The festival adds to the spirit of a summer in Graz. By presenting music from all over the world and a rich and diverse programme that shows us how close the Balkans really are.

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