The "Earthquake" festival in MCC is the ultimate event with an incredibly high-quality and diverse offer

"Earthquake" is an essential platform of all free-thinking and creative people in the city

Three music podiums, about 25 bands and artists and one huge heart that beats for MCC and Skopje are the established numbers with which "Zemjotres", a festival of independent youth music culture, will be held on February 4 in MCC.

The first major music event at the beginning of the year with a ten-year tradition behind it is the festival of the independent youth music scene "Earthquake". In the past 10 years, almost all relevant domestic authors, who create the music of this time, have passed through the festival. The latest "version 11.0.0" of "Earthquake" will be activated on February 4, from 19 pm to 4 am, in the Youth Cultural Center in Skopje. About 25 bands and artists will participate in the event on three different stages, and their presence is not accidental.

- Artists who have a release, or somehow marked the year preceding the festival, always have priority. This year we made a small step in the direction of a radical commitment to some new, fantastic youth, which is slowly but surely conquering the local geography and starting to write a new musical history. I believe that our experience, presence and dynamism put us in a strong position to curate a festival like this, which from the very first day is focused on the future and recruitment of new generations in the fight to install culture in this backward environment of ours - points out Mirko Popov, producer and organizer of the event.

In the first ten years, the festival saw constant growth and development. And this year there is a focus on the youngest, incredibly talented generation of local musicians, which like a terrifying force moves underground, shakes it and intends to explode with all its beauty, freshness and potential.

- When you have a clear idea, clear directions of movement and a collaborator like MCC - Skopje, it is not so difficult to reach realization. The festival very quickly fulfilled the original plans and expectations, and from year to year we patiently raised the level and I think we managed to climb several peaks. I don't want to sound immodest, but I think that "Earthquake" is one of the most beautiful and beloved musical events of the year in Skopje. A place where musicians from different generations and profiles meet in each other's arms, and the most beautiful and smartest Macedonian youth flows through the corridors of MCC. An essential platform that produces a community of the alternative scene, but also of all free-thinking and creative people in the city. A very serious sociological generator in modern Skopje. And this is not just my opinion. Love and belonging to "Earthquake" feel like a full breath and clean air, in the middle of Skopje's pollution of all kinds - points out Popov.

With a message of love for music, responsibility for culture and concern for the young generations, "Zemjotres" has become an important life station for bands, artists and the audience.

- In the past ten years, the most relevant names of Macedonian contemporary music have paraded through "Zemjotres", side by side with some not so famous ones and a bunch of absolute beginners. Equally, 20-25 minutes for everyone, in front of a crowded hall and wide-eyed, hungry for a new Macedonian living culture. "Earthquake" for a young band is the realization of all dreams. The same goes for the audience. For a huge number of young people, "Earthquake" is the first concert in their life, the first party, the first party, the first beer, the second beer, the third...

The ultimate event with an incredibly high-quality and diverse offer at the world level, and in our city. Skopje. The city hopes to retain as much of that smart youth as possible. The city that cannot understand that only CULTURE can retain smart youth and make any change for the better. "Earthquake" strives to be a generator of positive change. A friendly hand. The first step up. We'll see. We don't give up. We don't give away the city, and we don't even give away the MCC! - emphasizes Popov.

(The text was published in "Cultural Press" number 165, in the print edition of the newspaper "Free Press" on February 4-5, 2023)

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