ODA at Hugo, Tirana

ODA at Hugo, Tirana

On Friday, November 17th, Hugo bar in Tirana will be hosting the talented ODA, coming from Kosovo, for a 5hr show that is guaranteed to create an atmosphere of magical potency. Oda Haliti is a DJ from Kosovo who is

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Tirana International Fair

Tirana International Fair

Klik – Ekspo Group Albania, in cooperation with Advantage Austria Albania, have been organizing the biggest international fair in Albanian since 1994; this year, once more, the fair will be taking place from the 23rd to the 26th of November,

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Ancient building ruins discovered during Trans Adriatic Pipeline construction works

Ancient building ruins discovered during Trans Adriatic Pipeline construction works

TIRANA, Nov. 2 – As TAP construction work continues, an ancient building complex representing various historical stages was discovered. In the complex, which is located some 140 km from Tirana, close to the Fushë-Peshtan village, structures were identified dating back

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‘COMMUNICATION’, an exhibition by KALO Gallery

‘COMMUNICATION’, an exhibition by KALO Gallery

Delacroix said that “A picture is nothing but a bridge between the soul of the artist and that of the spectator” and this seems to be the quote best describing the collection of works over the course of 3 years,

Read Full Article
Shkodra remembers Musine Kokolari, a symbol of communist resistance

Shkodra remembers Musine Kokolari, a symbol of communist resistance

SHKODËR, Nov. 14 – The University of Shkodra hosted a commemorating ceremony in honor of dissident, Musine Kokalari, on Tuesday. Scholars from Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia and Italy attended the event, where it was highlighted that Kokalari was the first woman

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‘Through the Centuries’ Art Exhibition

‘Through the Centuries’ Art Exhibition

This art exhibition, entitled ‘Through the Centuries’, will be brought to the public by the Ministry of Culture and the National History Museum, and will showcase popular musical instruments used in the Albanian territory during the XIX-XX centuries. All these

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Blla blla blla…promote their latest album at Tirana’s pyramid

Blla blla blla…promote their latest album at Tirana’s pyramid

Blla blla blla will be promoting their new album, titled Brum për Medioferr (Dough for Media hell), at the Pyramid, in the centre of Tirana. Brum për Medioferr is the band’s fourth album, which will be available in vinyl form for sale during the

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Tirana’s much awaited book fair to mark 20th edition

Tirana’s much awaited book fair to mark 20th edition

TIRANA, Nov. 15 – Bookworms from all over Albania can come and feast on old and new, domestic and international publications of literary works during the 3 days of the annual Book Fair. Starting on the 15th of November, on Wednesday, the Book Fair

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Poetic genius Kasem Trebeshina passes away at 92

Poetic genius Kasem Trebeshina passes away at 92

By Sidonja Manushi TIRANA, Nov. 6 – One of the most valuable Albanian writers, Kasëm Trebeshina, passed away on Monday, at the age of 92. The funeral, which was held on Tuesday, officially bid the great author goodbye, marking the loss of

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TIFF Week: all about the big screen

TIFF Week: all about the big screen

The Tirana International Film Festival is all about creating a nurturing environment for film creators and film enthusiasts who come from Albania, all over Europe and the world, to unite and exchange knowledge and passion for the motion picture art

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                    [post_content] => On Friday, November 17th, Hugo bar in Tirana will be hosting the talented ODA, coming from Kosovo, for a 5hr show that is guaranteed to create an atmosphere of magical potency.

Oda Haliti is a DJ from Kosovo who is establishing a regular presence playing music in the most renowned bars and clubs across the Balkans and Europe. She has played at a number of important festivals, events, bars and clubs all over the Balkan peninsula and Western Europe. Beyond music, Oda has extensive experience working as an entrepreneur, PR expert, and a festival and event organiser before her career as a DJ began, and her work continues to significantly impact the cultural scene in Kosovo. Oda’s unique music selection energizes her audience, playing “Disco Experimental Electronic Beats.” Oda enjoys playing music so much that she considers it a pursuit of leisure; however she has been playing consistently since 2010 in a professional manner. In the last two years she has been working intensively on the development of new music projects, touring outside of Kosovo and collaborating with well-known local and international artists. Most recently she has been focusing on collaboration with celebrated musician Blerta Kosova, for which they have established a new, experimental live-act called “Tandem.”
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                    [post_content] => Klik – Ekspo Group Albania, in cooperation with Advantage Austria Albania, have been organizing the biggest international fair in Albanian since 1994; this year, once more, the fair will be taking place from the 23rd to the 26th of November, at the Palace of Congresses.

The most prominent Albanian and international companies participate in the International Fair, representing many different sectors, such as heavy and light, textile and footwear industries, as well as the communication industries, and are given a very good business chance to promote their brand through the services and products they offer, not only to a local audience. Last year, 280 companies from more than 30 countries over the world attended the International Fair.

It is the first year that Advantage Austria Albania participates as cooperator; it will be assisting the most famed Austrian business firms operating in Albania and readily give information to each visitor and business representative, hoping to rise business connections and initiatives.

The International Fair will be starting on 9am during all three days of the activity.
                    [post_title] => Tirana International Fair
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                    [post_content] => TIRANA, Nov. 2 – As TAP construction work continues, an ancient building complex representing various historical stages was discovered. In the complex, which is located some 140 km from Tirana, close to the Fushë-Peshtan village, structures were identified dating back from the 6th up to the 17th – 18th centuries.

During survey work that was undertaken before the pipeline construction began along the route it will follow, the geographical position of the discovered archeological site was identified as a high potential area. TAP’s cultural heritage contractor, Abkons, performed archeological rescue activities and unearthed “significant cultural heritage remains”, TAP’s official webpage reports. Thus, TAP experts have decided to reroute the pipeline and leave the site intact, due to the cultural importance of the buildings discovered.

“The archaeological excavations uncovered a building, with the oldest remains dating back from the late antiquity (6th century). It was possible to identify some of the spaces used for storage of agricultural and farming products. Close to these areas, the team also identified the remains of a small church, dating from the same period. Above these ruins, during the Ottoman period (17th – 18th centuries) a large residential complex was built, where we were able to identify Turkish baths (hammams),” Lorenc Bejko, a Cultural Heritage Expert working for TAP, said in a statement by TAP.

A team of more than 50 archeologists and cultural experts have been hired to continuously watch over and safeguard the areas construction work takes place. The rescue and protection of archeological sites along TAP’s route is important, and all cultural heritage elements are documented in the higher standards, meaning they include the legal requirements of Albania, Europe and the cultural heritage industry’s best practices.

To date in Albania, TAP identified nearly 210 sites and cultural monuments near the pipeline route. Back in May, construction works brought in light an ancient settlement in Korça, southeastern Albania. TAP cultural heritage experts said the discovery in the Turan village, Korça, is an open-air settlement “spanning from the early Iron Age (10th – 9th centuries BC) to the late Roman period (4th – 6th centuries AD)”. Back in mid-2016, TAP contractors also discovered a well-preserved archaeological artifact believed to date back to 6th century in Skrapar area, southern Albania. The find was a 40cm limestone column capital, decorated with engraved floral motifs, believed to have been part of a significant religious monument in the region.

The TAP discoveries unveil the rich cultural heritage in Albania, a gateway to the Mediterranean boasting a mix of Illyrian, Roman, Greek and Ottoman civilizations. The number of chance finds during construction activities amounts to 30, and archaeological rescue has been performed in 50% of these cases, with other sites being protected.

TAP which is expected to bring gas to Europe through Greece, Albania and Italy is generating one of the country’s largest foreign direct projects, with important benefits for a number of industries, including manufacturing, utilities and transport, Tirana Times has previously reported.
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                    [post_content] => Delacroix said that “A picture is nothing but a bridge between the soul of the artist and that of the spectator” and this seems to be the quote best describing the collection of works over the course of 3 years, put together by GALERIAKALO.

“Indeed, looking back three years from now, the identification and emphasis of communication of the artists with the public through their artwork used to be the main reasons why FONDACIONI KALO and GALERIAKALO were founded by our family, as a logical step towards institutionalization of art collection process. In the three years of their life, both structures worked really hard to create a new reality in Tirana, a new special art corner, perfectly located as a new neighbor adjacent to University of Tirana, University of Arts and FAB Gallery,” said a statement by the Gallery concerning this exhibition.

Through the support of a number of state institutions, embassies and business partners, the gallery has managed to host over 30 exhibitions in Albania and abroad, where around 900 works were displayed and 200 artists from Albania, Austria, Croatia, France, Germany, Greece, Kosovo, Poland and Serbia have been promoted. The Galley has also supported different categories of artists by practically adopting and implementing the inclusive art concept in practice.

“The number of so many exhibitions within 36 months can be considered as a fantastic track record. It shows commitment and dedication by our family, but also the importance of private initiatives in developing an art market in countries where it is almost inexistent,” another statement said.

In addition to all the exhibitions, GALERIAKALO also managed to build a small library where interesting art books and catalogues from Austria, Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Serbia, Sweden, United Kingdom, U.S., etc. can be offered to art students as well as the public at large.

However, the gallery will also make use of this anniversary to ask relevant institutions that should support and promote art (such as Tirana’s Municipality, National Gallery of Arts, University of Arts, etc.), to look more closely to private initiatives in the art sector as important partners and try to find ways out to offer their cooperation and incentives. Even though support has been offered by contributors and art collectors or admirers in providing specific items or in buying the gallery’s artwork, that the cost of maintaining an art gallery as an asset for the public good is still much higher than what a non-profit, private initiative can offer.

“We will, for certain, continue to play a role in promoting our art values by giving more chances to young artists and would like to announce today that FONDACIONI KALO will create a special prize - “BUZA”- a considerable financial contribution, to be awarded to one of the students from the Fine Arts Faculty of University of Arts, selected by a special procedure,” was added concerning the gallery’s initiatives, despite financial hardships.

The selection of artwork displayed at the GALERIAKALO was made by an appointed ad-hoc commission consisting of 3 international women who have been living in Albania for years, and a well-known Albanian scholar and critic.
                    [post_title] => ‘COMMUNICATION’, an exhibition by KALO Gallery 
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                    [post_content] => SHKODËR, Nov. 14 – The University of Shkodra hosted a commemorating ceremony in honor of dissident, Musine Kokalari, on Tuesday. Scholars from Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia and Italy attended the event, where it was highlighted that Kokalari was the first woman to publish a book in Albania, a symbol of communist resistance and an advocator of a democratic and pluralist Albania.

Professor Hamid Xhaferi, from the University of South-East Europe in Tetovo, said that Kokalari was not allowed to build her ideal democratic vision because of the harsh oppression of the communist regime, which imprisoned and send her to internment, but did not manage to break her spirit.

Meanwhile, Eduard Grishaj, expert of the Historic Museum of Shkodra, said that Kokalari’s life and work are in themselves the message that has been passed down, to this day, to the younger generations. Other scholars that participated mentioned the unique aspects and features of Kokolari’s political activity and literary, ethnographic and linguistic creativity, stressing how important it is to further study her work.

Kokalari was among over 30 writers from Albania, France, Hungary and Czechoslovakia to be considered by the first meeting of the ‘Committee of Three’, in 1960, the precursor to the present day International PEN Writers in Prison Committee. In 1993 Kokalari was posthumously declared a ‘Martyr for Democracy’ by the President of Albania and a school in Tirana now bears her name. Musine Kokalari’s writings were banned by the Albanian authorities and destroyed.

 
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                    [post_content] => This art exhibition, entitled ‘Through the Centuries’, will be brought to the public by the Ministry of Culture and the National History Museum, and will showcase popular musical instruments used in the Albanian territory during the XIX-XX centuries. All these instruments belong to Ermal Sela’s private collection.

This collection consists of 170 popular musical instruments, including idiophone, membranophone, aerophone and chordophone instruments. Everything will be displayed with accompanying explanations and pictures.

Ermal Sata is a famous Albanian artist and instrumentalist, who has previously worked as a coordinator at the Albania Brass Festival, bassist, and instrumentalist in many different events.
                    [post_title] => ‘Through the Centuries’ Art Exhibition
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                    [post_content] => Blla blla blla will be promoting their new album, titled Brum për Medioferr (Dough for Media hell), at the Pyramid, in the centre of Tirana. Brum për Medioferr is the band’s fourth album, which will be available in vinyl form for sale during the concert, at the Pyramid, and after the concert, at Destil Hostel Albania.

Blla Blla Blla is an Albanian-Macedonian rock band from Skopje. It was formed in 1988 by then band members Idriz Ameti, Ermal Skupi (Mehmeti), Nikola Bočvarov and Blagojče Penov. Later, Ermal (who played the violin) left the band and was replaced by Krenar Ismaili (vocal and violin). Idriz Ameti is the lead singer of the band. Most of the songs are in Albanian. Their style is described “Over Sky Ballkanishe Re-form” by the band itself, though there is no general consensus in categorizing their unique rock style. Other styles or genres used are Balkan-rock and punk.

Their first album was released in May 2000 and was called Blla Blla Blla.

“At that time we possessed a minimalist – original approach to music that brought refreshment to these Balkan spaces” the band was quoted saying about their first album on their official MySpace page. Their second album, called Over Sky Ballkanishe Re-form, was released in 2005.

Their music is considered influential beyond Macedonian borders. The band is one of the participants in the Balkan Streets series of South-eastern Europe music festivals featuring popular local groups in multicultural venues. They were among the artists appearing at the first festival in Kumanovo, Macedonia, in 2009 and also featured on the 2011 Balkan Streets program.
                    [post_title] => Blla blla blla…promote their latest album at Tirana’s pyramid
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                    [post_content] => TIRANA, Nov. 15 – Bookworms from all over Albania can come and feast on old and new, domestic and international publications of literary works during the 3 days of the annual Book Fair. Starting on the 15th of November, on Wednesday, the Book Fair will take place at the Palace of Congresses, the only big enough building to host the event’s wide participation.

The Book Fair is one of the most important cultural events in Albania, aiming at presenting the public with the best publications made available from the timeframe November 2016-November 2017 and bring together authors, publishers, readers, translators, and media and press representatives, in order for them to establish and extend the traditional ties among them. In addition, the Book Fair aims to promote and encourage the wide audience, especially youth, to read, in response to the limited book distribution system in the country.

While the most prominent publishing houses could not be missing from this event, the Book Fair actually covers a much wider range of literature, including books by Albanian institutes and smaller publishing houses.

The Albanian Institute for International Studies comes to the fair with three important publications, which have a special interest for diplomats, politicians, international relations scholars and students of this field. Sir Harold Nicolson's work Diplomacy is a classic art work of diplomacy, which will interest students, scholars and diplomacy enthusiasts alike. Consular and diplomatic right, is another book precious to the researchers of this sphere.

An important work for the history of Albania is Professor Robert Larry Woodall's The Albanian Problem during the Peacemaking 1919-1920, a very interesting, very complete and important work for Albania's History. He addresses in detail the Albanian problem during the Peace Conference in Paris and the attitude of other powers towards Albania, including Yugoslavia, Greece, Italy, France, Great Britain and the United States, the activity of the Greek and Albanian affairs committee, the United States-Britain Great Schemes of May 1919, as well as all the diplomatic maneuvers and plans for the decommissioning of Albania. This is a work that relies heavily on diplomatic archives from the United States, Great Britain, France and Italy and has a wide and unknown wealth of first-hand documents.
                    [post_title] => Tirana’s much awaited book fair to mark 20th edition
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                    [post_content] => By Sidonja Manushi

TIRANA, Nov. 6 – One of the most valuable Albanian writers, Kasëm Trebeshina, passed away on Monday, at the age of 92. The funeral, which was held on Tuesday, officially bid the great author goodbye, marking the loss of a figure worthy not only due to his literary contributions, but also the principles and determination he personified during his difficult life as a writer, prisoner of the communist regime, and Albanian.

Trebeshina’s last days were spent among his books and unpublished works, which count to 11 in total. Unfortunately, unpublished work was nothing new to the author’s life, who was first arrested in 1953, after publishing for the first time his historical drama Kruja e Çliruar (Liberated Kruja). What followed was years of imprisonment, internment and, worse even, mental disabilities’ treatment.

Thus, more than a writer, Trebeshina was a dissident, a revolutionary, and a person of ideas, ready to protect them in the face of imminent threat towards his well-being, establishing himself as an example to be followed, despite the fact he remained among the little-known figures of the early years of postwar Albanian literature.

Trebeshina was born in Berat and studied at the Shkolla Normale (Normal School) in Elbasan until he joined the communist resistance movement, in 1942. When the war ended, he studied at the Ostrovsky Theatre Institute in Leningrad. A committed communist, but by no means a conformist, Trebeshina left the communist party and later the Writer's Union in Tirana. Much of his work was written in the late forties and early fifties, but never published.

Trebeshina’s non-conformist, fearless nature appeared early on. The famous Albanian studier, Robert Elsie, has described how Trebeshina, “in an extremely rare act of open dissent in Albanian intellectual life”, sent a ‘pro memoria’ to communist dictator, Enver Hoxha, in 5 October 1953, warning him that the cultural policies he was following would inevitably lead the nation in the road to disaster. Needless to say, Hoxha was not a man who received criticism well. Kasëm Trebeshina, the unpublished author of eighteen volumes of verse, forty-two plays, twenty-two novels and short stories, disappeared from the literary arena altogether after this altruistic and self-destructive act, leaving almost no trace.

It took seventeen years in prison, and twenty years of both written and spoken silence, for him and a handful of other writers and intellectuals to find their way back to the Albanian society and see, sadly, that his prediction of the communist regime had come true. More than the whim of a moment, Trebeshina’s reaction to a system he initially supported was based on strong ideals, which he was ready to defend regardless of the consequences. Resulting in a life of physical and emotional hardship, internment also served Trebeshina’s literary creation, making him one of the most apt verbal painters of the communist regime, its horrors and suppressions, its darkness and wrath.

Of Trebeshina's voluminous writing, only one collection of poetry, Artani dhe Min'ja ose hijet e fundit të maleve, (Artani and Min'ja or the last mountain shadows), and an anonymous translation García Lorca’s plays were published at the time. Three of his prose pieces were later edited by Ardian Klosi in the volume Stina e stinëve (The season of seasons), providing the reader with an initial glimpse into a fantasy world not unlike that of the tales of Mitrush Kuteli, another prominent Albanian writer.

Trebeshina’s work is known for its surrealistic touch, a feature the author himself called ‘poetic realism’, which came as a result of his self-aware revolt against the dominant current of socialist realism.

Since the fall of communism, Trebeshina finally published twelve volumes worth of work, which consisted of short stories and drama. Trebeshina’s creative place in the Albanian literary arena has not been finally defined. ‘The season of seasons’ might be the work best representing the author as a whole, having grabbed the attention of intellectuals and scholars home, and abroad. Three novels are part of this volume: ‘The season of seasons’, ‘Odin Mondvalsen’ and ‘Albanian whim’. Whereas the first and third novels speak of childhood as remembered by the author, breaking the taboos usually identified in this age and moving past them, to the historic-philosophical burden that surpasses childhood, the second novel, ‘Odin Mondvalsen’, is so unique in its story-telling technique that it has become the epitome of Trebeshina’s creativity.

Despite the sadness of his parting and the creative loss an entire nation experiences by it, Kasëm Trebeshina will now surely be remembered as a founding figure of the culture and literature that followed Albania’s darkest time, aptly becoming both a reminder of what was, and a torch shedding light on what came after it.

 

 
                    [post_title] => Poetic genius Kasem Trebeshina passes away at 92
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                    [post_content] => The Tirana International Film Festival is all about creating a nurturing environment for film creators and film enthusiasts who come from Albania, all over Europe and the world, to unite and exchange knowledge and passion for the motion picture art form. Wishing to create opportunities for future cooperation and the development of scenic culture in Albania, the TIFF also gathers filmmakers, film producers, and distributors from various places to Tirana. As TIFF becomes the meeting point of all those distinct voices and works, it also ultimately serves the audiences ‘alternative visions of extraordinary diversity’.

The TIFF also aims at enriching the audience – especially the younger crowd – by setting up activities before, during or after the event. Some of the activities are year-long, and they consist of traveling to other cities, through various smaller partners and festival organizers. By working with small organizations and using youth centers’ facilities all over the country, TIFF not only manages a national impact, but also supports and gives more attention to small events in each city TIFF is present.

Since its inauguration, TIFF receives over 20,000 short and feature film, from over 120 counties around the world. More than 100 films get chosen each year for the competition. This ultimately makes TIFF an international cinema event which also aims at creating new audiences around the country, by combining film screenings with public debates and increasing film literacy.

Competition Program

The daily program of TIFF combines national premieres of feature films and short films in all formats and genres: fiction, documentary, animation, experimental and video art.  Open to any filmmaker from around the world, TIFF showcases new cinematic work by established directors with international reputations, as well as movies by talented students and young artists.

Besides the competition program TIFF commits a large space to special interest programs and screenings. PANORAMA, for example, has some thematic programs dedicated to the most sensitive social topics and diverse social groups, such as for children, women, immigration, integration of persons with disabilities, LGBT, etc., separated in these sections: DIVERGENT MINDS; GENERATIONs; MADE In ALBANIAN; NEW WORLD; PARADE. FOCUS is a special program serving as a tribute or homage to the cinema creator and/or the cinematic work of a given country. RetrospecTIFF brings to the new audience the most prominent national or international authors of the film history, as part of enhancing film literacy and remembering the roots of the event. REFLECTING ALBANIA is the oldest program of the festival, dedicated to the foreign filmmakers who have produced their films in Albania or in Albanian speaking territories.

TIFForum, a regional approach to promote cinematographic production in Albania and co-productions in the region, will be a 3-day intensive workshop, in collaboration with Torino Film Lab, for Script Development & Pitching Competition of 8 first or second feature film projects, consisting of individual consultations, practical writing exercises and lectures. The projects will work on their pitch with a trainer in the following 2 days.  On the last day every participant will pitch his project and compete for the Best Pitch Award.TIFF provides time in its daily schedule for master-classes and seminars with professionals in the motion picture industry geared for Albanian students of the cinema and emerging filmmakers.

Through 4 new services, called PARALLEL SCREENINGS, TIFF is now able to offer the opportunity to show films in alternative ways, considering the big number of applications. Those are the TIFF.TV Competition, where directors screening their films to Albanian audiences compete for the TV awards, TIFF On Tour, where movies travel through Albania in different cities and regional festivals, TIFF Online Library, an online presentation of each film in an online film library, with the possibility to receive comments from the international audience, and TIFF Market Corner, where potential buyers can watch all films and make their selection.

TIFF ’15 Highlights 

The opening ceremony of the TIFF will be held at Millennium Cinema, on Friday, and there will also be an opening party at 9pm at the Tulla Cultural Centre. Starting from Saturday, short films and features will be played throughout the day in various cinematic venues around Tirana, such as the Agimi Cinema and the Toys’ Theatre.

“Mothering” by Roqieh Tavakkoli is the sole Iranian films competing with eight feature films from Sweden, Bulgaria, Turkey, Croatia and several other countries. 20 Fiction movies have been selected to compete, where Georgina ‘8 Minutes’ and Serbian ‘Fluffy’ stand along among German, French, Israeli, Iranian, Greek and Belgian movies. The MADE In ALBANIAn category will feature films from Albania, Kosovo and Spain, while the REFLECTING ALBANIA category will feature films from Greek and Macedonian directors. 4 films from Israel will appear in the Go2Films category, and the FUTURE IS HERE will bring collaborations between Albania and Kosovo, and Kosovo and Serbia.

Information on all the fiction and feature films can be found on the TIFF official website, along with producers and directors’ information and participation/submission directions.
                    [post_title] => TIFF Week: all about the big screen
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            [post_content] => On Friday, November 17th, Hugo bar in Tirana will be hosting the talented ODA, coming from Kosovo, for a 5hr show that is guaranteed to create an atmosphere of magical potency.

Oda Haliti is a DJ from Kosovo who is establishing a regular presence playing music in the most renowned bars and clubs across the Balkans and Europe. She has played at a number of important festivals, events, bars and clubs all over the Balkan peninsula and Western Europe. Beyond music, Oda has extensive experience working as an entrepreneur, PR expert, and a festival and event organiser before her career as a DJ began, and her work continues to significantly impact the cultural scene in Kosovo. Oda’s unique music selection energizes her audience, playing “Disco Experimental Electronic Beats.” Oda enjoys playing music so much that she considers it a pursuit of leisure; however she has been playing consistently since 2010 in a professional manner. In the last two years she has been working intensively on the development of new music projects, touring outside of Kosovo and collaborating with well-known local and international artists. Most recently she has been focusing on collaboration with celebrated musician Blerta Kosova, for which they have established a new, experimental live-act called “Tandem.”
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