Serbia Has Best Major Fest

Serbia’s Exit Festival was named Europe’s best major festival at an awards ceremony in The Netherlands Jan. 15. 

Photo: Eurosonic-Noorderslag
Exit Festival directors Dusan Kovacevic and Ivan Milivojev take center stage as they pick up the best European major festival award in Groningen, The Netherlands, Jan. 15. 

“Some of you may know Exit is unique in the festival world as it started out as a student movement fighting for peace and freedom in Serbia and the Balkans,” Exit director Dusan Kovacevic told a packed house at De Oosterpoort, Groningen. “We believe that Exit’s social responsibility is still one of the most important reasons for our existence.”

Best small festival went to Fusion in Romania, while Germany’s Melt Festival took the award for best medium-sized festival.

It turned out to be a good night for the Germans. Metal Hammer Paradise won best indoor festival, Hamburg-based FKP Scorpio was named best promoter, Berlin Festival had the best lineup and Marek Lieberberg collected the lifetime achievement award.

Best new festival went to Hungary’s, which is organised by the same team behind the country’s Sziget, Balaton Sound and Volt festivals.

The “green operations award” went to Sweden’s Way Out West, while the award for health & safety innovation went to Switzerland’s Paleo-Nyon Festival. The “artists favourite festival” was Lowlands in The Netherlands.

The other artist awards went to Arctic Monkeys (best headliner), Daft Punk (best festival anthem for “Get Lucky”). Best new act was Imagine Dragons

The European Border Breaker Awards, which were also held in De Oosterpoort on the same night, went to Disclosure (UK), Icona Pop (Sweden), Jacco Gardner (The Netherlands), Envy (Norway), Zedd (Germany), Lukas Graham (Denmark), GuGabriel (Austria), Asgeir (Iceland), and Woodkid (France).

Kodaline took the Irish Border Breaker and also won the Public Choice Award.