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All fairy tales start with »once upon a time…« and everything about the fairy tales is true.

Therefore, once upon a time… years ago there were singer-songwriters, excellent, but without their own festival. They were drowned in the flood of popular music.

Then comes the summer. Petkovškovo nabrežje. Year 2000. And Ksenija Jus. She, with almost no money, created and organized the Kanta-Fest at the bar Charlie-Charlie near the river Ljubljanica in the capital city of Slovenia. In August from Monday to Friday various producers performed their music (Andraž Polič, Peter Andrej, Dušan Hedl, etc.).

Later in 2003, Peter Andrej admires the idea of ​​festival festivities of poets and singer-songwriters which was in his mind from the 1970, and he added the “drive and steering wheel” to the launch of the festival without dragging it into a trench. The kanta-fest became Kantfest.

In April 2003 the first Kantfest was held under the auspices of the CESAM – Youth Center Ruše in co-production with Club KU-KU. They issued the first record (panel) which included: Ksenija Jus, Jernej Mažgon, Damir Knez, Vasja Eigner, duo Tomi Lorber & Vojko Hlupic, Tadej Vesenjak, Gorazd Lampe, Dani Kavaš, Peter Andrej and Andraž Polič.

Since then everything has changed.

Kantfest was born and it started to run “On the bun or in the bucket?” And everyone thought, »the little one« was screwing around. Well, it was not!

The festival originates in native town Ruše and now it belongs to Maribor, to Ljubljana and it became international. »European capital of singer-songwriters« appears now with its 14t eddition.


KANTFEST INTERNATIONAL International Festival of Songs – is based on the co-production of CESAM – Center for Youth from Ruše, Club of cultural creators KU-KU, Maribor.  Later, CUK Kino Šiška Ljubljana, the Nomadi Culture Center Ljubljana and Peter Andrej as a producer have been participating in the 14th KANTFEST INTERNATIONAL 2016.

About the festival - Festival of singer-songwriting

The producer of the festival successfully combines performers, partners, sponsors with cooperation of Ministry of Culture.

Since 2010 the festival has succeeded not only in developing international visibility and cooperation with international partners, but also attracting the singers from the international scene and managed to maintain the connection and cooperation with international organizers and their related festivals and obtain new (Belgrade, Sarajevo) to existing: Tallaght Community Arts Center, Dublin-Ireland, FUN & LEARN, Innsbruck-Austria, Millenium Arts, Giurgiu-Romania, Århus Sangskriver Vaerksted,Århus – Denmark.

Everywhere the current Slovene production was very succesful.

Some of the foreign authors have already been introduced in Slovenia (European Capital of  Singer-Songwriters 2012, Danish, Austrian, Irish Singer-Songwriters at Kantfest International 2013 …).

This was followed by 2014-2016 at the festival in: Croatia, Ireland, Serbia, Great Britain and Bosnia and Herzegovina accompanied by our best singers.


Without the jury there would be no festival: Jani Kovačič, Jure Potokar, Urška Čop – Šmajgert, Teja Klobčar, Adi Smolar and Gregor Bauman take care of this year’s selection. The past jury: Katarina Juvančič, Xenia Jus, Rok Jurič, Bojan Sedmak, Drago Mlinarec … With their cultural activity they all guarantee the reputation and reference of the festival jury.


The purpose of the prizes is to encourage the competition in its humorous way – as it can be figured out from the name of the prize (a winner receives a gift – a garbage can).

Since its beginning the jury has awarded three most interesting festival makers for songs in slovenian language. Main prize:

GOLD KANTA enables recording the single CD and allows the author to easily get to his debut.

The second and the third prize:

SILVER AND BRONZE KANTA – enables the invitation and appearance at the LOR festival.

From now on we are introducing the new  prize:

VOX POPULI – prize awarded by the audience. We are therefore introducing the voice of the people.

SILENCE FICTION – prize for the songs in foreign languages. 


The new CD-compilation is issued each year and its purpose is to promote the performers and with no attention of CD selling.