AFS2024 Speakers

Natalia Oszkó-Jakab

Valley of Arts

Name of the candidate: Natalia Oszkó-Jakab

Job title: Festival Director // CEO // Chair of board of Trustees
Age: 40
Gender:  Female
Citizenship/origin: Hungarian
Artistic/geographical experience: Multi-art, lived in several places from Ukraine (went to school there) and to UK, New Zealand

Name of the organisation / festival: Valley of Arts Festival (Hungary), Kerekdomb Festival, Hungarian Tourism Program Foundation
Membership category: Individual
Country of the organisation / festival: Hungary
Festival art disciplines: Multi-art
Annual turnover: €2.500.000
Number of visitors per edition: 148.000

Motivation: My journey with the European Festivals Association (EFA) began in 2014, initially drawn in by the EFFE label procedure. As I delved deeper into the organisation's ethos, priorities, and initiatives, my connection to it deepened. I found myself attending gatherings, both within Hungary and beyond, advocating for EFA among my peers in the festival community.

Throughout the tumultuous period of the COVID-19 pandemic, EFA became my cornerstone of cultural support. Engaging with fellow members week by week, I gained invaluable insights into the challenges faced by festivals across Europe. It became evident that our shared struggles necessitated collective action and solidarity.

My community activity started from Hungarian organisations of participation at the Hungarian Festival Association, being the founder of the Music Hungary Associations and now the Festival Department leader within the organisation. From 2021, my community and lobbying activity led to founding the Hungarian Tourism Programme Foundation which now became the EFFE Hungarian Hub since Autumn 2023.

Motivated by this sense of community and the need for greater representation from Eastern Europe and the Balkans, I am eager to contribute more substantially to EFA's mission. The participatory approach of the association, where knowledge is shared on equal footing, resonates deeply with me. I believe in the power of collaboration and alliances to uplift festivals and enhance their impact on issues like the environment and society.

My commitment to EFA extends beyond mere participation; I am driven to actively contribute to its sustainability pillars - environmental, societal, and economic. By leveraging my time and insights, I aspire to foster a more resilient, diverse, and culturally vibrant European cultural festival sector.

I humbly offer my candidacy for the EFA board, believing that my efforts and dedication can play a meaningful role in advancing our shared goals. Together, I am confident that we can further elevate the cultural landscape of Europe and beyond.

Thank you for considering my application, and I eagerly anticipate the opportunity to contribute to the collective vision of EFA.