The programme is addressed at emerging festival managers or those who have ambitions to get involved in programming in festivals. Participants broaden their programming skills, widen their horizons, and develop new project ideas under the professional guidance of renowned festival managers from all over the world who share their rich experience and guide participants throughout the 7 days. The Atelier focuses on the very essence of festival management – the arts, the artist and the audience.

The Atelier is about the participants!

Through the unique life-long learning programmes in the arts festivals context, The Festival Academy brings together an enormous variety of creative minds: individual actors to be upskilled and informed about the state of play of the world today by experts and through peer-to-peer learning, who are given a time out to reflect critically on the role of festivals in today’s world, infused by people of different backgrounds and perspectives to challenge and provoke our thinking or the way we do things. 

Have a look at questions and topics addressed at previous Ateliers to get inspired (non exhaustive):

  • Different models of curating, focusing on building audiences/ communities, innovation, the impact of festivals, fundraising (beyond subventions) working with new technologies 
  • How festivals are/can be agents for social change and social cohesion
  • How and if festivals can contribute to strengthening (European or even Global) identities and values and tackle rising nationalism 
  • Fair international collaboration (and trade) including the Unesco 2005 Convention for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions
  • Festivals and migrant/ refugees communities 
  • Sustainable festival making on all levels
  • Freedom of expression and the relevance of artistic boycott
  • And, what are the burning questions and vision that move you in your ambition as festival maker? What do you urgently want to discuss and share with your peers? 

To have an even better idea of what the Atelier is all about you can have a look at the programme of our last Atelier in Kortrijk (November 2019), and watch the video of Shahidul Alam (Time Magazine’s Person of the Year 2018, renowned photographer, initiator of the award winning organisations Drik and Chobi Mela, teacher, writer and human right activist) who challenged the minds of all people present with his opening provocation.