The 20th Exit Festival anniversary will be held from 8 to 11 July at the Petrovaradin Fortress. It has become one of the symbols of Novi Sad during the 20 years of its existence. It’s the reason people from all around the world come to our city.
Over the years, Exit has brought some of the most legendary names of the world music industry to the Petrovaradin Fortress and has given people some of the greatest memories to reminisce about.
EXIT Noise Summer Fest
During the summer of 2000, Exit lasted for 100 days. It was the first Exit ever and the only one that wasn’t held at the Petrovaradin Fortress. Instead, the festival was located between the Faculty of Philosophy and the left side of the Danube, where a couple of stages were set up. The festival was initiated by the students and activists as a support for democracy in Serbia.
Exit Found Its Permanent Home
One year later, Exit moved to the Petrovaradin Fortress and lasted for nine days, hosting the world-famous musicians, such as Kosheen, Roni Size and Bob Sinclar, but regional stars as well – KUD Idijoti and Darko Rundek. In addition to the Main Stage, Exit gave an opportunity to the less commercial musicians as well to perform on a bunch of other stages hidden in the nooks of the Petrovaradin Fortress.
State of Exit
In 2003, Exit reduced the number of days, having a total of 4 days of the festival. The ‘State of Exit’ campaign was promoted, with an aim to unite tolerance and environmental protection advocates, and anyone who wants to make the earth a better home to everyone. Great musicians from around the globe continued to visit the festival in the years to come – Moloko, Stereo MC’s, Massive Attack, Soulfly, Iggy Pop, Cypress Hill. Exit started to attract attention of the world media, such as MTV, who filmed a documentary about the festival, while BBC Radio 1 broadcast the festival in 2005. All this led to Exit attracting more and more foreigners.
Records and Awards
In 2006, more than 600 musicians performed across 26 stages, while the unofficial report stated that around 160 thousand people attended the festival. That same year, 45 thousand people watched Billy Idol perform on the Main Stage. Snoop Dogg, Robert Plant, Juliette Lewis, Moby, Lily Allen, Prodigy, Hives, Primal Scream, Sex Pistols, Manu Chao, Nightwish, Korn, Arctic Monkeys and Chemical Brothers performed in the years to come. In 2007, Exit won the Best Overseas Festival award at the UK Festival Awards. This was the first important award for the festival. After that, Exit received the greatest acknowledgement by the EU festival Awards – it won the Best Major Festival award twice, in 2013 and in 2017.
Exit got its second home in 2014, its energy flew all the way to Montenegro, i.e. to the Jaz beach near Budva, where the first Sea Dance festival was held. After that, three more countries from Southeast Europe became hosts to the festival – Sea Star festival in Umag (Croatia), No Sleep festival in Belgrade (Serbia) and Revolution festival in Timișoara (Romania).
This year’s Exit Festival will mark 20 years since one of the most significant music events of the 21st century was created. For the first time ever, Exit wasn’t held in 2020, which is why this year’s Exit follows the slogan ‘Celebrate Life.’ Headliners of the 2021 Exit include David Guetta, DJ Snake, Paul Kalkbrenner, Robin Schulz, Amira Medunjanin and many others. You can see the entire lineup on this link.
This is how the Exit Festival has looked over the years:
Photo: Exit festival