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From Balkans to San Francisco.
Balkan music unites the world one beat at a time!

Director Tuğrul Sarıkaya
Creative Producer Duygu Gün
Director of Photography Özgen Göksoy



“It is amazing how much you think you know, and how little you actually know…
BALKANCISCO brings a lot to the table, and never loses its focus.”
– MVU Fest Team
a curly haired woman walking in a San Francisco street


Directed by Tugrul Sarikaya, Balkancisco is a documentary that explores the influential power of Balkan music in the San Francisco Bay Area. The film showcases how this music transcends borders and unites people. In "Balkancisco" we follow the story of a Turkish girl named Duygu, who moves to San Francisco in search of a feeling of home in her voluntary exile. While exploring the city, she stumbles upon the ever-growing Balkan music scene in San Francisco and is immediately drawn into this vibrant community. Fascinated by how Balkan music is appreciated in San Francisco, Duygu sets out on a quest to understand how this interest evolved over time. Along her journey, she interviews the old-school pioneers who brought Balkan music to the Bay Area and the new-generation bands like Balkan Bump and Beats Antique that have moved Balkan music to the national and international music festival scene. As she delves deeper into the world of Balkan music, Duygu discovers a vibrant community of musicians and fans who have made this music their own. She takes us to sold-out Balkan jam sessions and parties where a cosmopolitan group of San Francisco residents rave to the beats of Balkan music. Through her journey, Duygu discovers a sense of belonging and a new appreciation for the power of music to transcend cultural boundaries and create a sense of home, no matter where geographically we find ourselves in the world.


Multi-instrumentalist and film music composer - Dan Cantrell; Emcee/Rapper, and co-founder/vocalist of Bang Data - Deuce Eclipse; founder of Balkan Camp - Mark Levy; clarinet master - Ismail Lumanovski; trumpeter and Balkan Bump band leader - Will Magid; belly dancer - Jill Parker; Inspector Gadje manager and drummer - Marco Peris; founder of Kafana Balkan - Zeljko Petkovic; cultural anthropologist, and folklorist - Carol Silverman; Roma music master - Rumen Sali Shopov; Balkan Sundays organizer and percussionist - Sean Tergis; Beats Antique - David Satori, Zoe Jakes, Sidecar Tommy