Festival with performances, music and debates Freiraum Festival

Freiraum Festival Logo Goethe-Institut / Design Atelier Brenda

Fri, 30.10.2020 -
Sun, 01.11.2020

A hybrid festival on the state of freedom today with voices from all over Europe

The Freiraum Festival will be held on 30, 31 October and 1 November 2020, during Germany’s EU Council presidency. In digital as well as physical formats in Brussels, Berlin and 20 other European cities, from Athens up to Turin and Prague, the Goethe-Instituts will be joining forces again with partners in culture and the arts, the research community and civil society to ask:
What is the state of freedom today in Europe in corona era?

Registration required for the opening evening at BOZAR 30.10.2020 Registration Big Conversation at Beursschouwburg 31.10.2020
Over the past few months of the coronavirus pandemic, life in Europe has been constricted by curfews and quarantines, closed borders and surveillance, and restrictions on public and private freedoms. What is the state of freedom in Europe today? How important is it? Where is freedom at risk and how can we protect it?  The Freiraum Festival will be hosting open conversations about the new (post-)pandemic realities in Europe, the role of social movements, active forms of solidarity and new artistic formats for a resilient and inclusive society.

The Freiraum Festival will feature both physical and digital formats.To open the festival at the BOZAR in Brussels on 30 October 2020, Belgian Philosopher Philippe Van Parijs will give a keynote. Bulgarian political scientist and winner of the 2020 Jean Améry literary essay award Ivan Krastev will be taking part in an online debate of a series called Neue Wir-Erzählung held by the Goethe-Institut Brussels in association with the ARD Liaison Office in Brussels and the German weekly Die Zeit. 

An online summit of pre-recorded talks, live discussions and experimental performances will be streamed Europe-wide on 31 October – and screened in all the locations covered by Freiraum’s partner network, including Brussels itself – and on 1 November 2020. 
Eva Illouz, a sociology professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the École des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris, will be opening the online programme with a talk about the concept of "home" (French: "foyer") as both a refuge and a prison in this age of the coronavirus.

The Freiraum Festival in Brussels will be coming to the multidisciplinary Beursschouwburg Theatre on 31 October. In addition to art interventions and project presentations, Day 2 of the physical festival will feature a "big conversation" about freedom of the media. Media people from all over Europe, representatives of European institutions and NGOs will discuss the state of media freedom in Europe with a live audience.

programme freiraum festival in brussels 30-31.10

  • FRIDAY 30 OCTOBER (7:00-9:00 pm) - BOZAR: Opening event

- Musical opening: “Freiraum-Rhapsody“, Concept: Edit Pula, Composer: Fatos Qerimaj (Tirana, 2018), Conductor: Floris Lammens

 - Opening and greeting
Paul Dujardin, Director of BOZAR
Elke Kaschl Mohni, Regional Director for South-West Europe, Goethe-Institut 

Keynote and Q&A
Philippe Van Parijs,
philosopher, economist, professor emeritus at UCLouvain:“Real freedom for all in the corona era”​
Q&A session, moderated by Karl Van den Broeck (BOZAR Agora)
- Performance and Statement:
Symbolic and artistic reading of the “Freiraum Manifesto” elaborated by all European partners of the project by slam poet Samira Saleh and
Official hand over of the Manifesto to Mariya Gabriel, EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth and statement about Freedom of Culture and the arts in Europe today
- Live streaming of the Round table discussion "A new normal after the lockdown?"- Freedom and Europe in the (post)corona era“ with:

Eva Illouz, 
Professor of Sociology at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and the School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences in Paris, author
Ivan Krastev, political scientist, chairman of the Centre for Liberal Strategies in Sofia, permanent fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna
Johannes Ebert, Secretary General of the Goethe-Institut
Moderation: Matthias Krupa (Die Zeit)

"A new normal after the lockdown?"
This virus is anything but biological: It is above all a political event.
Eva Illouz, June 2020
The world will be different, not because our societies want a change …, but because we simply cannot go back.
Ivan Krastev, June 2020
From one day to the next everything was different: our daily life, our daily work, our daily togetherness. Or just: not togetherness. We were home alone, together with the whole world. That was the feeling, as the pandemic spread across Europe in early spring. Now, in autumn, we're stuck in an in-between: between the desire to return to normal and the uncertainty about what kind of normal it is. Shops and schools and restaurants are open, but borders close again. We'll get back together, but not so many. We're still counting infections, but already tired of wearing masks. And Trump and Putin are still there too … The world will be different, but in which way? We cannot go back, but what lies ahead of us? We would like to discuss about the question, how the new normal after the lockdown looks like.
In the framework of the series "Neue Wir-Erzählungen", Co-organizer: ARD and Die Zeit. This debate series was initiated in 2013 by the Goethe-Institut, the liaison-office of ARD Broadcast in Brussels and the journal Die Zeit and explores the questions: Which narratives can be told about Europe? Who are we, who do we want to be, where do we want to go together? What is needed to advance the European Union as well as Europe as a political, economic, cultural and social project?

  • SATURDAY 31 OCTOBER (1:30-10:00 pm) - Beursschouwburg :

- 1:30 pm: Opening and greeting
Melat Gebeyaw Nigussie, Director of Beursschouwburg
Elke Kaschl Mohni, Regional Director for South-West Europe, Goethe-Institut 

Manifesto: Symbolic and artistic reading of the “Freiraum Manifesto” elaborated by all European partners of the project by slam poet Samira Saleh
- 2.00 – 7:00 pm: Live Broadcasting of the Freiraum Online-Summit in Beurs Café
Comments and discussion about the online Freiraum summit with Karl Van den Broeck (Apache.be). Moderation: Bouchra Lamsyeh & Petar Sarjanović
- 6.00-8.30 pm: Big Conversation on Freedom of the press in Europe in the Gouden Saal and first floor
Nine tables with one expert and ten to fifteen guests, one topic per table, two rounds and an intense debate on the topic of freedom of the press
Participatory, experimental discussion format with:
Julie Majerczak – Reporters without borders (European)
Catherine André – VOX Europe (European) 
Karl Van den Broeck – Apache.be (BE)
Béatrice Delvaux – Le Soir (BE)
Quentin Noirfalisse – MEDOR (BE)
Gia Abrassart – freelance journalist (BE) 
Bleri Lhesi – freelance journalist, MO* (ALB)
Alia Papageorgiou – Association of European Journalist (GR)
Raffaella De Marte – European Parliament, Head of the Media Services Unit (EU) 
Moderation: Bouchra Lamsyeh & Petar Sarjanović

- From 8.30 pm: DJ-Set in Beurs Café with Bleri Lhesi aka DJ Bruselo

programme online summit 30.10-01.11

Live on 30-31 October and 1 November on www.freiraumfestival.eu 

Artistic direction and concept: ArtBOX.gr | Creative Arts Management & Goethe-Institut.
Partners for the Brussels edition: BOZAR and Beursschouwburg; ARD-Verbindungsbüro Brüssel and Die Zeit. 

Freiraum is a Goethe-Institut project working with 53 partners in culture and the arts, the research community and civil society in 42 different countries to explore the state of freedom in Europe and related questions together since 2017. The Freiraum Festival is co-organized by a team of curators from our partner network under the artistic direction of ArtBOX Creative Arts Management. It is part of a series of Europe-wide Goethe-Institut projects held during Germany’s EU Council presidency. For more information, go to: www.goethe.de/EU2020

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