Hungary's Sziget Festival reopens after two-year hiatus

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Hungary's Sziget Festival made a grand comeback Wednesday after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, starring Justine Bieber and Dua Lipa among its major highlights.

With more than 1,000 performances on 60 stages, the six-day event on the Obuda island on the Danube in Budapest is one of the largest and most popular music festivals in Europe.

This year, the 28th edition of the Sziget is held from Aug. 10 to 15, attracting an estimated half a million people from across the world.

According to Tamas Kadar, chief organizer of the festival, thousands of people were already out for the Sziget on Tuesday, including guests from 103 countries and regions. Meanwhile, artists from 54 countries and regions were preparing for their performances.

"The two-year break due to the coronavirus epidemic did not make the situation any easier for us," said Kadar. "The world has changed a lot, many people have left the profession and it's difficult to bring together the professional staff."

A "green" festival that is committed to recycling and environment protection, this year's event will also feature a "cirque du Sziget" that combines dancing, theatre, acrobatics and other forms of performing arts. 

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