Welcome, Take Some Freedom: The Fourth Edition of the LGBTIQ+ Art and Activism Festival Kvirhana from June 6 to 8 in Sarajevo!

Svemirko, Marko Bošnjak, Ida Prester, and Macha Ravel will perform at the fourth edition of the Kvirhana festival, and entrance to all events is free of charge.

This year, the Kvirhana Festival focuses on freedom and, as before, strives to be a safe and celebratory space for all LGBTIQ people and their friends. The rich program of the festival will include, among other things, a play, an exhibition, concerts, films, talks, and a drag show.

Slogan Bujrum slobode! (Welcome, take some freedom!) in today’s context we place the responsibility that freedom carries, at the same time questioning the paths that lead to it. Freedom is won and nurtured, and through the artistic and activist events of Kvirhana, we will think about and enjoy freedom in different formats, so join us because we have something to offer this year as well.

The festival will be opened at SARTR at 19:30 with the play “Our Son” by Patrik Lazić, produced by the Hartefakt Fund from Serbia, which has already achieved notable success on regional visits. After the young man drives himself to his parents, they try to live with the knowledge that their son is different. The rituals of the family dinner become a big dramatic twist.

The daily program of the second day of the festival starts at 2 p.m. at the Novo Sarajevo Children and Youth Center and is reserved for socializing and getting to know each other through the Mingling session, after which there will be screenings of two domestic short films. The short film “Jan” by Kenan Musić and Mirza Čustović is the first ever short film from the region available on the HBO Max platform, and it talks about friendship and love, the search for a place where there is no need to label instincts, and a film that challenges the recognition of love in all its forms. The film “Tomorrow We Will Buy Fish” by Sara Ristić follows the teenage girl Asja who, after 5 years, meets her older sister Amina whom she has not seen since Amina was thrown out of the house.

After the film screening, there will be a discussion about queer (LGBTI+) visual creativity in which the authors of the films, the main actor from the film Jan, Maksim Jovanović, and the photographer Monika Andrić will participate. Her photo exhibition “Differences from which we are woven – an insight into LGBTIQ+ lives” will open at the same location at 7 p.m. The exhibition of intimate portraits and documentary photographs explores the everyday life situations of LGBTQ+ people and how their differences are integrated into the wider society.

The music program on the second day of the festival will be held in Kino Bosna and will be opened by a drag show by four drag artists from Bosnia and Herzegovina. After that, the young Sarajevo duo Bluzze will perform, and then Marko Bošnjak, the “nightingale” from Prozor-Rama, who conquered the audience as a boy when he won at “Pink’s Stars“, and then with his performance at the Croatian Dora. The concert will also be held by the famous Croatian musician and presenter Ida Prester and the pop band Lollobrigida, and the night will be closed by the Croatian electro duo Cura i Dečko, a dynamic explosion of emotions and dance that fills club spaces and breaks stereotypes.

On Saturday, the last day of the festival, at the same location of the Novo Sarajevo Center for Children and Youth, there will be a queer FANZINE workshop: Joint writing of the manifesto for the first edition of the queer fanzine.

The rest of the day’s program is focused on Queer Talks, conversations on various topics important to feminism and LGBTIQ activism, and the arts. Nina Pavićević, the person behind the popular feminist Instagram profile Kritički, will also participate in the event.

The festival will close the music program, which starts at 9:30 p.m. in Kino Bosna, with a performance by the alternative/post-rock indie band Foster from Split. After that, Oli Pop (Olivera Popović), a singer-songwriter of alternative pop music from Serbia, will perform, and then Macha Ravel, a trap-rap musician from Bosnia and Herzegovina, formerly known as Muha, who had her first live performance at the Kvirhana festival in 2021. With the release of her first synth-pop single “Traume“, she confirmed her well-deserved position on the Balkan alternative pop scene. The biggest stars of the festival are certainly the alternative pop project Svemirko, which became famous in the territory of the former Yugoslavia with the album Vanilija. Until the end of the night, attendees will be entertained by DJ Sonja Sajzor, one of the most important trans activists in the region.

You can view the entire program at kvirhana.ba, and find all the news related to the festival on the Kvirhana festival’s Instagram profile.