Dolna Malina Open Fest 2022

What surprises can you find at the art festival, just 29 km from the capital?

Written by Kristina Petkova, edited by Mila Boshnakova, photos by Dolna Malina Open Fest Team

A whole week of sports tournaments, music and cinema competitions, DJ parties two nights in a row, concerts, film screenings, art workshops, beers, and lots of fun! YES, there is such a festival - exactly 28.6 km southeast of the center of Sofia! Save the dates 21 - 28 August (only for those signed up for the cinema competition) and 25 - 28 August for visitors.  

Here are some of the things you can expect to see at Dolna Malina Open Fest this August:  

Not 3, not even 5, but 7 festival zones!
The festival is taking place in 7 different locations:
Zone 1: The center of the village of Gorna Malina: the festival is included in the municipal holiday calendar.
Zone 2: The sports center in the village of Gorna Malina: classic competitions and e-sports will be held in this area.
Zone 3: The entrance to the village of Dolna Malina: modern sports such as beach volleyball, football, and performing arts like theater productions will take place in the village community center!
Zone 4: The center of the village of Dolna Malina: folklore and folk art.
Zone 5: The main music stage and camping area: this is where the music competitions, open stage for dancers and musicians, film screenings, and DJ parties will take place.
Zone 6: Film studio BUFO: the cinema competition will take place here.
Zone 7: Bailovo village: a literary reading will be held here in honor of the author of the short story, Elin Pelin, whose birthplace was Bailovo.  

Show your competitive side during the sports tournament
Maybe you couldn’t go to the seaside this year or just can’t get enough of it - there will be beach volleyball and mini football tournaments! You can find the registration form on their official website.

Show your music talent during the music competition
The grand prize for artists who win the music competition in the categories of pop, jazz, rock, and other music genres, is the filming of a video worth 10,000 BGN. During the festival, the participants present an original song created no more than 6 months ago and unattached with Collective Rights Management Organizations, as well as two additional authors’ pieces upon request. A professional jury will select a winner, whose video will be shot free of charge in partnership with the BUFO cinema center and K Media production company.  

Be creative for the cinema competition
Dolna Malina Open Fest challenges young professionals and students in the audio-visual sector during the period 21 - 27 August. They will have the opportunity to shoot a short film on the territory of the municipality of Gorna Malina with equipment, props, and costumes provided by the BUFO Films & TV Studios cinema center. A jury of industry professionals will evaluate the best films, and the winners will receive technical and studio support for filming a documentary or feature short project with the support of K Media production company, BUFO cinema center, and the MustArt association.

Enjoy DJ parties two evenings in a row 
The guys from Cool Den will make the audience dance non-stop! The group consisting of Nikola Simeonov (guitar, vocals), Ivaylo Petrov (guitar, vocals), Vasil Andreev (bass), and Teodor Chirpanliev (drums) will be on stage on 26 August! 
Immediately after them, with absolutely no break, the party continues with a DJ set by Martin Nox, who will blow the audience away with remixes of beloved tracks. Marto has been working professionally in music since 2016 and has mixes that reached the Top 100 Global EDM Mix Chart & Electronic Dance Music Chart on Mixcloud! On Saturday (27 August) People of Maha will be on stage, and the electronic duo Bratyata will make the audience sweat and dance immediately after! DJ 89 is the pseudonym of Angel Petkov, the younger brother of the electronic duo Bratyata, which he created with Ivan Petkov. This is the story of two brothers who follow the footsteps of Bulgarian folk music and reach the conclusion that it should be carried into the new millennium, as well as serve as a musical textbook for the coming generations. On their way, they met more people who joined their adventure. From this, the musical plays "Balkan Trap" and "Future Folk" were born.   

Be bold and perform on the open stage
Every year, the organizers provide an open stage for talented people just like you! If you play a musical instrument or can sing well, don't hesitate to sign up for the open stage!   

Take part in numerous art workshops
What is an art festival without art workshops? The organizers have gathered many talented artists who will help you and guide you, so you can tap into your creative side!   

Join the festival as a volunteer 
That’s right - you can get an up-close look at what is behind the scenes of organizing such a great festival and take part as a volunteer. You can apply to volunteer here.   

Enjoy cinema under the stars
Just like each of the past 5 years of the festival, the partner organization Kinematograf will once again organize short movies every evening. Bring a blanket and good company - you can get your drinks at the bar!   

You can choose among various options to join the festival, even for free!
If you are into dance, music, folklore, cinema, or sports and want to be part of the open stage or the competition part of the festival, you can register on the official website.
The tickets are limited, don’t hesitate to get yours here!  
- Day ticket (includes access to all paid areas and daily events of the festival on the day of your choice) -  15 BGN
- Day ticket + overnight stay (includes access to all paid areas, day and night events of the festival, as well as an overnight stay in the camping area on the day of your choice) -  30 BGN
- For the entire festival (includes access to all paid areas, day events of the festival, night events [concert headliner, cinema screenings, and DJ parties], as well as two nights in the camping area) -  50 BGN
- If you want to come only for our night events (after 22:00), which includes a concert by a headliner, a cinema screening, and a DJ party -  20 BGN 

A BONUS reason to attend: This year, in addition to art, the organizers will talk about entrepreneurship! From the stage of Dolna Malina Open Fest, they will announce the winners of K Media's Tech competition!  

The festival is Organized by Yonko Dimitrov (founder) and K Media
With the support of Dolna Malina City Hall, Gorna Malina Municipality, BUFO Cinema Studio, MustArt Organization, Bulgarian Film Institute, Kinematograf

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