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At the opening of the KONTAKT Conference, Showcase and Festival, on Thursday 21 March, at the Yugoslav Film Archive, numerous guests and delegates were greeted by partners and friends of the event.    

This year's KONTAKT Conference was opened by Ivan Ilić, professor at the Faculty of Music in Belgrade, President of the Serbian Association of Jazz, Pop and Rock Musicians of Serbia, and President of the Assembly of the Organization for Collective Administration of Performing Rights of Serbia. He pointed out how important it was that an event such as that took place and for the contact to be established in that way between ‘these wonderful and talented people’, thanking KONTAKT for managing to organize, with the help of CEBEF, a conference where energy, information, experiences were exchanged for the eighth year in a row. Ilić expressed hope that the younger generation would become better acquainted with the music industry and that they would expand their knowledge about it, about connections on the regional artistic and cultural music scene, and that that cooperation would develop in the coming years.      

Director of the British Council for Serbia and the Western Balkans, Clare Sears, expressed her delight at the institution's support for KONTAKT, which was primarily reflected in the arrival of numerous guests from the United Kingdom, stressing that the British Council supported artistic and cultural programmes in Serbia and developed opportunities for cooperation between Serbia and the UK in that field.

The Belgrade Festivals Centre – CEBEF, which celebrates its 10th anniversary, is another important partner of the KONTAKT conference. CEBEF is a partner of KONTAKT for the third time.     

On this occasion, Jelena Janković-Beguš, member of the Board, addressed the audience. She reminded that CEBEF, in addition to the numerous projects and festivals it organized – FEST, BEMUS, the festival in Sopot and many other projects, payed special attention to cooperation, which was the main motive for participating in the KONTAKT Conference, which provided an opportunity for networking at the regional level and establishing new partnerships. Janković-Beguš emphasized that the previous year the project Synergy, supported by Creative Europe, i.e. the European Commission, had ended and had connected six festivals from Ljubljana to Tirana, and that that tendency continued with connections, making new acquaintances and expanding activities. In this way, as she said, the City of Belgrade is promoted, as well as the outstanding ideas that come from the region, but also from all over the world.  

Professor Momčilo Rajin, announced as one of the most important figures in the history of the music and cultural scene, welcomed the attendees and expressed his wish that the KONTAKT Conference and the panels that were organized would be meaningful. He said that he would be very happy if the importance and influence of rock and roll were restored.

This year's KONTAKT Conference, Showcase and Festival will host 200 delegates and organize 70 showcases as well as concerts at several locations in Belgrade from 21 to 24 March. You can view the detailed programme at /