Mahala Rai Banda

M.R.B. at INTERNATIONAL FILM & MUSIC FESTIVAL-KUSTENDORF / SERBIA

About Festival

The 7th Kustendorf International Film and Music Festival will take place from January 18-23, 2014 in Drvengrad on Mokra Gora. It is organized by Rasta International and is under the patronage of the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Serbia as well as the City of Mecavnik and TNSO. As in previous years, the festival is dedicated to future filmmakers and already acclaimed contemporary film authors.

COMPETITION PROGRAMME – Fifteen movies from France, Singapore, Israel, South Korea, Mexico, Poland, Serbia, USA, China, Iran, and Slovakia will compete for the Gold, Silver, and Bronze eggs. The variety in authorial approaches and the high quality of the chosen films guarantee that the competition for the awards will be exciting and unpredictable. The international panel of jurors consists of French actress of Argentian descent, Berenice Bejo (president of the jury), Mexican screenwriter and director Guillermo Arriaga, and Serbian screenwriter and director Srdjan Koljevic. This year, the Vilko Filac award for best cinematography will be awarded by world renowned director of cinematography and two-time Oscar winner Janusz Kaminski and Serbian director of cinematography Goran Volarević. As in previous years, the selector for the competition programme is Dunja Kusturica.

MUSIC PROGRAMME – Every night, following the screenings and workshops, concerts from musical groups will complete the famed Kustendorf nightlife atmosphere. As part of this programme this year performers will include: French star Isabelle Geffroy who won the world over under the stage name Zaz, the biggest Serbian rock band of all time Riblja Corba, Mostar Sevdah Reunion, which presented their experience of the sevdalinka genre of music to the world, the Romanian attraction Mahala Rai Banda, as well as the stylistically unfathomable and adrenaline spiking band Emir Kusturica and the No Smoking Orchestra.

Having ripped up stages across the USA and Europe, Romanian roots rockers Mahala Rai Banda are to blast stages all over the world with their fierce Gypsy funk. The 11-piece brass band’s blend of hard Balkan brass with minor key violin & accordion melodies has turned them into a force to be reckoned with. Having taken shape on the mean streets of Bucharest, Mahala Rai Banda’s sound is 21st C Gypsy music: rooted in tradition but with hints of dub and soul, Turkish and Arabic assimilated into their roaring dance mix. When Mahala Rai Banda hit the stage ancient Gypsy campfire tunes blend with the raucous din of Balkan Mafia clubs. Mahala Rai Banda’s unique Eastern groove evolved in the mahalas (Gypsy ghettoes) on the outskirts of Bucharest, Romania’s ruined capital city. In these mahalas musicians from the southern village of Clejani (home to legendary Gypsy orchestra Taraf De Haidouks) jammed with brass musicians from the Moldavian village of Zeci Prajine (home to Balkan brass blasters Fanfare Ciocarlia). Quickly, they became the hottest weddings and parties band in Bucharest. As Romanian Gypsies traveled into Western Europe the band’s legend spread.

The Kustendorf International Film and Music Festival 2014 will host famed authors, actors, and musicians, numerous young filmmakers and film school students from all over the world, as well as other eminent guests from the film world.

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