Festivals acknowledged for being heralds of Creativity and Innovation

11 May 2009

On 14 May 2009 in Vilnius/Lithuania in the framework of the 2009 General Assembly and Conference of the European Festivals Association (EFA) hosted by Vilnius Festival, 86 arts festivals from 35 countries receive the ‘FestLabPass for Creativity and Innovation’, a passport that commits festivals to act as laboratories of creativity and promoters of innovation. Handing over the FestLabPass, Mr. Gintautas Babravičiaus, Vice-mayor of Vilnius City responsible for Vilnius ECOC programme, acknowledges the outstanding role of festivals in the fostering of creative and innovative skills in our societies today. FestLabPass holders are invited to act as messengers of the European Year of Creativity and Innovation. “The Vilnius Festival is honoured to host the second awarding ceremony of the FestLabPass that is given to festivals that engage strongly in the fostering of creative and innovative talents and competences,” states Rūta Prusevičienė, Executive Director of Vilnius Festival. “It is very important to our Festival to give impulses to the FestLab for Creativity and Innovation.” The second FestLabCeremony rounds up the 2009 EFA Conference on “Artistic Trends in Festivals”. The FestLabPass commits festivals to support artistic creativity, young artists and the creation of new works; to enhance the mobility of artistic ideas; to devote particular attention to training and education; to engage in new models of governance and partnerships; to enhance accessibility, inclusion and intercultural dialogue; and to raise awareness and act as messengers. “Creativity, imagination and a supportive engagement of EFA members is required to face the challenges of our contemporary societies. The FestLab has been established to highlight the important role culture in general and festivals in particular play in times of change and challenges,” EFA President Darko Brlek underlines. The FestLab for Creativity and Innovation is an EFA initiative taken at the occasion of the 2009 European Year of Creativity and Innovation. It was launched on 27 March 2009 in Prague in the framework of the Czech EU Presidency event “Forum for Creative Europe” with Ján Figel’, European Commissioner for Education, Training, Culture and Youth, acting as the first official to assigns 25 major European festivals from 15 European countries with the FestLabPass. Festivals from across Europe and the world are invited to sign up to this initiative and join forces. The mission of the FestLab can be followed at Download the press release in English, French and German. Contact: Juliane Reissig, Communication and Project Assistant European Festivals Association Kleine Genttraat 46 9051 Ghent/Belgium T +32 9 241 8080 F +32 9 241 8089