In Retrospect

The development of skills of festival managers needed for the artistic programming of festivals is at the heart of the Atelier. Participants worked in small groups, attended lectures and debates, learnt from case studies and implement practical activities. Atelier mentors and presenters – all renowned, trailblazing festival managers from all over the world - shared their rich experiences with the participants.

Tobias Kokkelmans, Flanders Festival

"The Atelier was the opportunity to meet both experienced festival leaders in an intimate context, as well as the possibility to meet young colleagues. It’s very rare in our specific professional context to meet so many young people together. To me, that was food for thought."

An intense seven-day programme

The Atelier goes beyond traditional teaching practices; the carefully selected young programmers widened their horizons and perspectives on festivals and programming practices. They were able to enlarge and build a sustainable network which proves to be essential on the long-term.

The necessity and consequences of taking artistic risks was a central theme in all interventions during the course. Other questions and themes centered around the roles festivals can play in the development of the artistic scene of a specific location and in the definition of a city or region's cultural identity, possible ways of connecting with various local communities and of developing audiences, and the importance to a festival's success and longevity of continuously assessing and redefining its identity and artistic vision.

The atmosphere during the workshop was open and optimistic. The work schedule was full and demanding, but also incredibly productive and stimulating. The reactions at the end of the week were very positive. Participants came away with fresh ideas, new energy and self-confidence, and, maybe most importantly, with a whole new network and endless possibilities for future international exchanges and long-term collaborations.

Participants and presenters stayed in touch and many exciting new projects grew out of this network established in Görlitz.

The full programme can be viewed here.

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