Dua Lipa festival moves to Albania

Agence France Presse

Posted at Jun 16 2022 08:55 AM

PRISTINA, Kosovo - British pop star of Kosovo descent Dua Lipa said Wednesday her August festival in Pristina would now take place in Tirana after government failed to approve a land lease for the event.

"The same date, the same wonderful experiences, different locations. Sunny Hill Festival will move to Tirana," Lipa said on Instagram.

Kosovo's largest music festival was launched in 2018 by the singer and her father Dukagjin Lipa, who is also her manager.

In 2018 and 2019 it was held at the Pristina site, but wanted a place with greater capacity.

The leasing of 17 hectares (42 acres) for the festival was approved by the Pristina municipality, but also need government backing.

In a letter to Kosovo leaders, Lipa's father said the event will not be held in Pristina "due to numerous delays", notably the lack of a final government decision.

The festival needs a "permanent house in its own city", he said in the letter published on the event's website.

Meanwhile, Tirana mayor Eriod Veliaj hailed the change in venue.

"Dua Lipa and her invitees will illuminate the nights of the capital in the first week of August," he said on Facebook.

Leading Kosovo online daily paper Koha Ditore blamed the authorities for the loss of the festival which, it said, had "put Kosovo on the world cultural map with the seal of Dua Lipa".

Pristina mayor Perparim Rama slammed the government for interfering in municipal affairs, saying it had damaged the capital's image.