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EFA 60 Years On: Association of Irish Festival Events welcomes EFA delegation

23 February 2012

From 16-18 February 2012 in Dublin/Ireland, the Association of Irish Festival Events (AOIFE) welcomed a delegation of the European Festivals Association (EFA) and hosted EFA's annual Collective and Affiliate Members Meeting (CAMM). It was the occasion to kick off at national level EFA's 60th anniversary celebrations under the motto "EFA 60 Years On: Festivals and the World". The Jubilee Guest Book - which is to travel around Europe and beyond in the course of the year - was first signed by the Lord Mayor of Dublin Andrew Montague, Lucinda Creighton, Minister for European Affairs, Senator Michael Mullins, Senator Catherine Noone, and Members of Parliament Terence Flanagan and Bernard Durkan. Furthermore, representatives of 16 national festival associations and cultural networks endorsed EFA's proposal "Europe for Festivals - Festivals for Europe" (EFFE), and the role attributed to national associations. Lord Mayor of Dublin Andrew Montague received the EFA Board at the historical Mansion House. In his exchange with festival directors he underlined the importance of festivals and cultural events for multicultural cities such as Dublin. “Europe for Festivals – Festivals for Europe” is a new approach to festivals in the future EU cultural policy and will be further discussed with the European Commission. The proposal was previously discussed with Androulla Vassiliou, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, on 26 January 2012 and presented to the European Parliament’s Culture Committee on 22 November 2011. Minister Lucinda Creighton stressed her support of EFA’s proposal and the importance of such initiatives in keeping culture on the agendas of politicians both at national and at European level. A seminar on “60 Years On: Advancing Cultural Participation in Europe”, organised by AOIFE at the National Library of Ireland, discussed some of the overall aims of the proposal, such as audience building and the role of culture in European citizenship. “We are delighted to support the goals EFA lays down in its proposal. We will continue to bring EFA’s mission to the attention of key players at national level, as with our organisations from Belgium, the Czech Republic, Great Britain, Estonia, Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Serbia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland we represent altogether more than 2000 festivals and events organisations,” said Colm Croffy, Executive Director of the Association of Irish Festivals and Events. Last but not least, the working meeting of EFA’s Collective and Affiliate Members discussed in particular a joint European research project – FESTudy – set up by national festivals associations, networks and universities to gather facts and figures on festival life in Europe. At the occasion of its Diamond Jubilee, EFA is setting up a broad range of activities. “Throughout the year, EFA will join forces with hundreds of festivals and its partners around the world to celebrate, commemorate and in particular reflect on the present and future of arts festivals,” stated EFA President Darko Brlek and invited the cultural and festival sector to join activities on the Jubilee website (www.efa-aef.eu/efa60). Related links and documents: • EFA Jubilee WebsiteEFA Blog “Festival Bytes”Photo Gallery of the EFA Delegation in DublinEFA Collective and Affiliate MembersAssociation of Irish Festival Events“Europe for Festivals – Festivals for Europe”Round Table: Festivals meet Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou