“Open The Door” in the frame of EU Forum

14 October 2010

The European Festivals Association (EFA) invites to its open space session “Festivals: Open Doors. Open Minds. Build Societies!” in the framework of the EU Forum “Building together a society for all”. On 20 October 2010, from 9:30-11:00, in Brussels at the Halles de Schaerbeek, the European Festivals Association is invited to organise a participatory open space session (programme) dedicated to the 2010 EFA flagship project “Open The Door” ( The project is initiated at the occasion of the European Year for Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion. In the framework of the trans-sectoral EU Forum set up by the European Commission, EFA sets the floor for an interactive exchange with artists, festival representatives and actors from the cultural and other sectors on the role and responsibility of arts and culture in the process of social development. Dedicated to the motto “Festivals: Open Doors. Open Minds. Build Societies!” the session is the moment to present first results of the “Open The Door” initiative: best practice examples, tools and actions have been identified in a series of some 30 interviews with festival directors from all over Europe. The opinions of participating festival directors are challenged by a critical address of stage director Galin Stoev (tbc). It follows a conversation with Biljana Zdravkovic, General Manager Belgrade Music Festival, and Jelle Dierickx, Musicologist, Artistic Coordinator of Gent Festival of Flanders, Vice-President of ISCM Flanders 2012 Music Days. The debate invites all participants to identify keys needed to open doors to arts and culture and the respective responsibilities of decision-makers to enable festivals to support the development of a more inclusive society. “The European Year calls upon all stakeholders to engage. There is no doubt that culture can contribute to combating poverty and social exclusion – but only if the arts and cultural sectors are equipped with the appropriate frameworks, means and tools to present artistic works, they can fully comply with agendas of societal concern. Artists and their creations and productions are the ‘ring’ for all keys that are used by festivals to continuously build inclusive societies,” EFA President Darko Brlek underlines. “It is essential for EFA to bring across the message that the role of arts and culture is generally recognised if we want to achieve to see a true social and a cultural Europe in the future.” The session is part of the EU Forum “Building together a society for all - A circus against exclusion” organised by the European Commission in the framework of the 2010 European Year for Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion and the campaign "Do you know what social Europe can do for you?". The Forum illustrates the European Year's message of participation and shared responsibility, by giving an active role to various actors: public authorities, NGOs, social and cultural actors, foundations, as well as people experiencing poverty. Related links and documents: • EFA Press ReleaseProgramme EFA's Open Space Session“Open The Door” websiteEU Forum “Building together a society for all”Belgian EU Presidency Seminar “The contribution of culture in combating poverty and social exclusion”European Year for Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion