The term “Balkans” refers to a European region. A region bordered by seas, crossed by rivers such as the famous Danube and scattered with symbolic bridges.
A region located in the South-East of Europe. Slovenia, Hungary and Austria are often called the “Gateway to the Balkans”. There begins a cultural universe, whose cultural innovations remain unsuspected, but that is totally complementary to our “old” Europe.
It is commonly said that the Balkans are comprised of Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Albania, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Serbia, Bulgaria and Romania.
According to other sources, Greece, Moldavia and the continental part of Turkey may be added to that list.
The Balkan Trafik Festival takes into account the important influence of the Jewish, Muslim and Romani minorities. Those, and especially the Romani communities, free themselves from borders. Thanks to them, the festival gets access to many more countries.
Indeed, “Balkan” is extremely simplistic. All of the abovementioned countries are unique and rich of their own identities, despite their common historical backgrounds.
It is startling to see that the term “Balkan” obliterates the interest that we should have for our South-Eastern European neighbours. Each of those countries is home to an energy, a creativity that is totally complementary to ours, presumably thanks to their recent past.