International Festival Lent

Photo Credits: Archive Narodni dom Maribor.
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Country and Region SloveniaPodravje
Type of Festival Music
Location of Festival Maribor, Podravje, Slovenia
Festival Contact Information

International Festival Lent

Narodni dom Maribor
Ulica kneza Koclja 9

SI-2000 Maribor


Phone: (386) 2-229-4000

Fax: (386) 2-229-4055

Email:, or

Festival Description

Festival Lent is the largest outdoor festival in Slovenia, and one of the largest in Europe. It includes the Folkart International Folklore Festival, the Ana Desetnica Street Theatre Festival, Jazzlent Festival, StandUpFest stand up comedy festival, a programme for children and youth in the Adventure Park, and sporting events with Sports Lent. Festival Lent has something for every audience. Over the past twenty years, in late June and early July, the Festival has attracted more than half a million visitors every year, making it the most recognisable festival in Slovenia. Every fourth Slovenian has visited the Festival at least once. It was one of the main events of European Capital of Culture Maribor 2012.

Festival Lent is one of the most recognisable of Maribor’s trademarks. Along the River Drava and elsewhere in the city, different events, varied in genre but in overall harmony, take place - opera and ballet, theatre and dance performances, jazz concerts, classical music, world music, concerts by singer-songwriters, concerts of chansons and folk music, folklore evenings, street theatre performances, events and activities for children, and sporting challenges. The core of the Festival is the Main Stage, a large floating stage on the River Drava beside the Water Tower.

Festival Dates June 21 - July 6, 2013
Festival Links

Festival Story:

During the first days of the summer holidays, Maribor turns into a city of youth, relaxation, playfulness, creativity and sociability. With Festival Lent, the city becomes a multicultural world in which visitors, participants and organisers feel the pulse of attachment to culture. Each year, with Festival Lent, Maribor becomes a capital, cultural and enjoyable. Since the first Festival in 1993, our guiding principle has been clear: to bring high quality culture to the general public at an affordable price. Today, the festival features over 1,200 events at 40 venues in 16 days for the price of a full Festival ticket - which is competitive with the admission price of a single unique cultural event - and more than half a million visitors!

To date, many internationally acknowledged musicians have performed at Festival Lent, particularly at Jazzlent. Along the banks of the river Drava, stars such as Ray Charles, B. B. King, James Brown, Jose Feliciano, Lester Bowie, Stephane Grappelli, Tania Maria, Les McCann, Jimmy Whitterspoon, Maynard Ferguson Big Band, Paquito D’Rivera, Howard Johnson & Gravity, Dr. John, B. Golson, Chicco Freeman, Vocal Sampling, Reggie Workman, Chucho Valdes, Brad Mehldau, Monty Alexander, Ray Brown, Alfredo De La Fé, Bela Fleck, Alvin Queen, Dr. Didge, Esbjörn Svensson, Alfredo Rodrigues, Matt Darriau, Taj Mahal, Malia, Mercedes Sosa, Olodum, Macy Gray, Solomon Burke, Jimmy Cliff, Eric Burdon & The Animals, David Byrne, Reggie Johnson, Femi Anikulapo Kuti and many others have attracted numerous visitors.

Moreover, every year honoured guests at the festival also include many acknowledged Slovene artists. The International Folklore Festival “Folkart” is characterised by its quality and the variety of folklore groups from Slovenia and abroad. Some top street theatre groups from all around the world, and from Slovenia, visit Maribor every year thanks to the Street theatre Festival. This multicultural program is already a well-proven formula, and is sure to meet the demands of all discerning visitors.

The overall artistic concept of a ‘festival of festivals’ as the main theme of various events at various venues highlights the diversity of cultures at the intersection of historical, national and social diversity. Borders will soon be gone, where they still remain… Festival Lent promotes interaction and encourages the exchange of experience. Is is artistically like a veritable beehive, full of bees who are diligently organising, qualitatively acting and enthusiastically applauding. The concept is called BEE (Bordering European Experience), and with this experience inside the borders of the European Union, which does not restrict, but connects, we express the youth, pleasantness, creativity, cooperation and sustainable approach of Festival Lent. Or to put it in a new word that we have coined: ‘LENTing’.

At Festival Lent, the audience and performers are active participants in the most fun entertainment in the city, where each individual LENTs on his/her own; however, we all are LENTing together. For some, LENTing might be the first kiss; for others, it is a new, fascinating, unique experience. The big stars on stage and the small stars in the sky are LENTing. LENTing is a chat over good food. LENTing means the unique stories experienced by visitors and performers at Festival venues, courtyards, and streets, in the park, on the banks of the river on Lent Promenade and all around the city, day and night, non-stop, sitting, standing, lying down …. LENTing is the night under the clear sky, it is a great outdoor concert, and it is the feeling of the waves of the crowd on the Promenade, the laughter of old friends and the resounding applause from the audience on the bank of the River Drava; it is the beginning of summer and the end of the school year. LENTing is a word game. LENTing is what other festivals don’t have. Only Festival Lent has LENTing.


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