EFA Collective and Affiliate Members’ Meeting - Ubeda/Spain, 28-30 January 2009

12 January 2009

4th Annual EFA collective and affiliate members' opening doors to new adventures At the invitation of FestClásica, the Spanish Association of Classical Music Festivals, the 2009 EFA collective and affiliate members' meeting took place from 28-30 January in Ubeda/Spain. This year, the annual meeting focused on the role of national festivals associations in supporting member festivals’ to foster creativity and innovation. The FestLab for Creativity and Innovation, an initiative of the European Festivals Association taken at the occasion of the European Year of Creativity and innovation, will play an important role in the working year 2009 of the European Festivals Association (EFA) – in partnership with national associations and networks. The Ubeda meeting offered invaluable networking opportunities. Furthermore, the gathering resulted in the definition of a longer term working agenda which includes the improvement of synergies in the fields of communication, research and exchange of relevant facts and figures in the festival business. EFA and 15 national festivals associations and networks – representing altogether more than 1000 festivals and events organisations from Belgium, the Czech Republic, Great Britain, Estonia, Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain and Sweden – launched a joint statement expressing their appreciation of the excellent work of FestClásica and the importance of the Association for the cultural landscape in Spain and in Europe. At the same time, all festivals and festival associations confirmed their engagement in promoting festivals as laboratories for creativity and promoters of innovation. A festive moment was marked by the signing ceremony of the Arts Festivals’ Declaration on Intercultural Dialogue with the participation of the Mayor of Ubeda, Mr Marcelino Sánchez, and the General Director of Arts and Music of the Cultural Ministry, Mr Juan Carlos Marset. The next gathering will be held at the occasion of EFA’s General Assembly and Conference in Vilnius, European Capital of Culture 2009 in May.