Nele Hertling: “You are the one to enable the artist to create something”

12 May 2016

The second mentor of Atelier BUDAPEST 2016 is Nele Hertling, Member Strategy Group “A Soul for Europe", Former Vice President of the Academy of Arts Berlin, Former Director Hebbel-Theatre Berlin, Germany. She has participated in each Atelier since 2006: GOERLITZ 2006, VARNA 2009, SINGAPORE, IZMIR 2011, LJUBLJANA 2012, EDINBURGH, POZNAN 2014, BEIRUT 2015 and GWANJU 2015.

“A festival gives you the chance to do extraordinary things. It creates an atmosphere, and supports productions that most theatres wouldn’t be able to produce. And you can really use this atmosphere to take risks and to take an audience with you because they are in a group, sharing a moment together. But as a festival director, you have to keep in mind that you must support the artist and that the artist isn’t there to support you. You are the one to enable the artist to create something,” says Nele Hertling.

Throughout her career Nele Hertling has built many collaborations, created festivals and established organisations in Europe representing turning points of changes in society at their respective times. She was the General Manager of Berlin - European Capital of Culture in 1988. One year later, she reactivated the Hebbel-Theatre in Berlin, and acted as its Artistic Director until 2003. From 2003 to 2007, she was the Head of the Berliner Künstlerprogramm des DAAD.

Nele Hertling organised contemporary dance festivals in Berlin: Dance in August (1988), International Dance festival (1999), and, together with Thomas Langhoff, she created the programme of Theater der Welt (1999). She has been the Vice President of the Academy of Arts in Berlin. She is a founder and member of many international associations devoted to the support and promotion of art such as the European House for Culture and “A Soul for Europe”.

Nele Hertling is convinced that changes have to happen in the hearts of the citizens, artists, city representatives or state commissioners in order to be successful on the long run. Projects and programmes initiated by the EU can be good examples and serve as support, but local integration of art practitioners and political lobbying has to be a bottom-up process in a specific city or state.

“Nele Hertling and her infinite wisdom humanised the experience of working with artists and working as part of a team to create remarkable things,” wrote Summa Durie, participant Atelier EDINBURGH 2014, in a blog.

Renowned mentors from all over the world will guide the participants throughout the seven days of the Atelier BUDAPEST 2016 under the coordination of Hugo De Greef (Atelier Coordinator, former EFA Secretary General, Director European Capital of Culture Bruges 2002, Co-Founder Kaaitheater Brussels - Belgium): Rania Elias (Director of the Yabous Cultural Centre and Jerusalem Festival, Palestine), Bernard Faivre d’Arcier, (President Lyon Biennial, former long-standing Director Avignon Festival, France), Rose Fenton, (Director Free Word, former Director LIFT London, UK), Agnes Havas, (Director Armel Opera Festival, Hungary), Michal Merczyński, (Director of the Malta Festival Poznan and founder and director of Nostalgia Festival Poznan, Poland.), Jonathan Mills (Director of the Edinburgh International Culture Summit, former Director of the Edinburgh International Festival, UK.)

More information about the Atelier BUDAPEST 2016 can be found on the Atelier website.