Kazantip (stylised as kaZantip, also known simply as "Z") is an electronic dance music festival held every year on the Crimean peninsula. The entrance ticket is called a "viZa". It takes place for 5–6 weeks in the summer and more than 150,000 "paradiZers" visit each year. There is a cult of orange coloured fashion and yellow suitcases associated with the festival.
The festival is named for the Kazantyp headland near which it was held from 1995–1999. During that time the festival took place inside the turbine hall of the unfinished Crimean Atomic Energy Station near Shchelkino. The festival was moved to the Vesele (also referred to as Veseloye) settlement in 2000. Since 2001 the festival has been held in the Crimean town of Popivka (also referred to as Popovka). The president, creator, and initiator of Kazantip (Republic Z), is Nikita I (actual name, Nikita Marshunok). In the beginning the festival was very low-key and was nothing more than a bunch of windsurfers partying after a hard day's wave riding. But later Nikita decided to include a trance and techno music party to celebrate the end of the season. This gave birth to the festival as it is today.
There is a special celebration called "Mayovka" or "Happiness Parade" which is held as a rule from the end of April to the begin of May. This is the Z-national holiday dedicated to spring, friendship and happiness. During these days Z-people dance, take part in a Happiness Parade, show their happiness to each other and prepare for the big summer events.
KaZantip presents itself as a "virtual republic" with over 300 DJs on more than 14 dance floors which play 21 hours per day. The republic is held on a piece of land covering 60,000 square metres (15 acres).
DJs performing during KaZantip 2010 were (among others) Carl Cox, Hybrid, Marco Carola, Oliver Huntemann, DJ URI, Armin Van Buuren, Josh Wink and Seba. Season 2011 (also called "Z19") brought Pendulum as an opening headliner, Leeroy Thornhill (ex-keyboardist from The Prodigy) as one of the guest DJs, as well as John B, Marc Romboy, Richie Hawtin, Ricardo Villalobos and many more. 2012 line up included Armin Van Buuren (Leiden, Netherlands), Tiesto (Breda, Netherlands), Carl Cox (Oldham, England), Josh Wink (Philladephia, USA), Skrillex (Los Angeles, USA), Rusko (Wheldrake, England), DJ URI (Boston, USA), Benny Benassi (Reggio Emilia, Italy), Vika Jugulina (Timișoara, Romania), and many many more. 2013 Performances by Bobina, Ferry Corsten, Markus Schulz, and many more.
- Johnstone, Sarah; Bloom, Greg (2008). Ukraine. Country Guide Series. Lonely Planet. pp. 19, 191. ISBN 978-1-74104-481-2.
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