Every year, crowds from around the world flock to the small Serbian town of Guca, for its famous, annual trumpet festival. The lively, upbeat music makes for a great summer event and gives less-known bands a chance to get noticed and make it big. But behind the fun and carefree festive atmosphere, few people see the gruelling demands placed on the musicians dedicated to their art.
Kosovo, with NATO’s help, won independence from Serbia in 1999. In 2014 Serbia opened its borders with the young republic allowing tens of thousands of migrants to leave Kosovo for Europe. Disenchanted Kosovars hoped to escape poverty and unemployment by seeking better lives abroad for themselves and their children. The massed departure has come to be known as “the Exodus”.