彩神appvWorld's biggest brass band feast turns Serbian town into dance arena

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GUCA, Serbia, Aug. 11 (Xinhua) -- The sound of trumpet and the catchy Balkan rhythm once again moved crowds of visitors into an ecstatic dance on the streets of tiny Serbian town of Guca, reputedly the venue of one of the best parties in the region.

In past four days, local and international visitors of the 59th Guca Trumpet Festival had been enjoying the music of finest Serbian brass orchestras, together with those from France, the Czech Republic, Australia, Portugal and Slovenia.

Each night saw tens of thousands dancing in the streets of Guca, a town located some 180 kilometers southwest of Belgrade, with some 2,000 inhabitants.

Visitors praised the unique atmosphere created by the sound of trumpet echoing through alleys clouded with smoke from restaurants that offer local delicacies prepared on open fire such as cabbage rolls, barbecue and roasted pig or lamb meat.

Although the festival was envisaged in 1961 as the state competition for best trumpet player and brass band title, it has since outgrown its initial purpose and became one of the largest festivals of its kind in the world.

Organizers of the festival Sunday cited legendary jazz musician Miles Davis, who reportedly visited the festival many years ago and claimed he "didn't know one can play trumpet that way".

The magic of these self-thought masters of trumpet and other brass instruments lies in their improvisation, based on their memory of traditional tunes, and so far, it has been spontaneously attracting international fame to Guca and Serbian music in general.

A young man from Poland surrounded by a brass orchestra told Xinhua while dancing in the street: "We are here because the atmosphere is amazing - just look... there are so many people, these guys are playing and its really nice".

Leon from Slovenia said "I really like to dance to this trumpet. He came here with his colleagues for the first time to have fun.

Besides the energetic Balkan sound that can be heard here at Guca's three stages, the program also includes international bands playing in different styles, from jazzy melodies to traditional tunes of their countries.

"Each type of brass music has its special quality. Some prefer Serbian brass music, others like the European one, but for us any of those is fine if it is playing here in Guca," says Nemanja, a young man from Bosnia and Herzegovina.

"I first visited this place several years ago, and I have been a regular visitor since then. I like to return here because if you have in mind the food and drinks here, as well as people and partying -- everything is at the top level," he summed up.

Djordje from BiH said he came here to spend the entire festival partying with his friends.

"I am attracted by the sound of trumpet, atmosphere, girls... I can say that concerts are amazing. My biggest wish here was to hear Dejan Petrovic and his big band, which are masters of trumpet, and I find them fascinating," he explained.

With a concert of the awarded Serbian brass bands of this year's competition at an open stage located in a courtyard of the village church, the festival draws to a close on Sunday night.

Many of the visitors look forward to next year that marks another jubilee - the festival's 80th edition.