The city of Matera, Italy, was chosen as the European Capital of Culture 2019. Since it assumed this title it has put on a range of events to prove it truly deserves it. The European Capital of Culture is a title awarded on a yearly basis by the European Commission. The winning city is expected to put on a series of pan-European cultural events. Cities can submit proposals to an international panel. The panel assesses cities based on a criteria set by the European Union which includes if a city has potential to benefit socially and economically from the title. The programme started in 1985 - Athens was the first city to receive it. Since then a total of 40 cities have been assigned the title with 9 different countries earning it in 2000 at the turn of the millennium. This year Matera and Plovdiv, Bulgaria, share the title. Matera is famous for its ancient cave drawing in Sassi, its historical centre. These date back to the Paleolithic period meaning they were created around 10,000 BC. … [Read more...] about How is Matera proving it is the European Capital of Culture?
Paphos european capital of culture
The sun is shining on Matera on its big day. The city is officially the European capital of culture. Over the next 12 months, more than 1 million tourists are expected to visit. But what does that mean for the so-called city of "Sassi” or stones? Only days after the opening, it's already generating a buzz with organizers calling it a huge success. The opening ceremony included 54 marching bands played Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy’. Internationally celebrated Italian composer and pianist Stefano Bollani conducted all the bands in a big concert. He told Euronews about his reason for having marching bands play. “I like the idea of having marching bands playing because in a band everyone plays just for the pleasure of it. They’re rarely professional musicians, unlike in a symphony orchestra. Music is not their job so they put a lot of joy into playing, they have fun together and they just aim to play good music”. But the marching bands are just the … [Read more...] about Italy’s 9,000 year old Matera is European Capital of Culture
The Bulgarian city of Plovdiv is officially European Capital of Culture. It is one of Europe's oldest cities, with many architectural landmarks dating back to Thracian, Greek, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman times. To celebrate the ancient heritage and it's multi cultural past and present, Plovdiv chose the motto 'Together' for this year as Europe's Capital of Culture. "A historic city with 8,000 years of continuous human habitation, with a multi-ethic past and almost six decades of totalitarian Communism is this year's Cultural Capital of Europe," said Euronews journalist Wolfgang Spindler. "Together is the leitmotif; in this time of Brexit and rising nationalism, there could be no better message than this," he added. Svetlana Kuyumdzhieva, Artistic Director, Plovdiv 2019, explained the importance of unity and togetherness in the evolution of the historic city and the role it can play today through different cultures and the arts. "This city was built from different communities that … [Read more...] about Historic Bulgarian city of Plovdiv is European Capital of Culture 2019
Matera is celebrating its inauguration as the European Capital of Culture 2019 with a spectacular opening weekend. Watch part of the ceremony live on this page – Saturday, January 19 from 18:50 CET. The European Capital of Culture is a yearlong event that celebrates diversity and culture in Europe and aims to help people discover the richness of the continent. Each year many cities apply and just two or three are selected for the honour. In Matera the opening celebrations will take place across two days between January 19 and 20. During the event, marching bands from many of the Basilicata’s municipalities will give extraordinary performance on the streets of the town, reviving old village musical traditions on an impressive scale, with each band representing a European Capital of Culture. Overall more than 2,000 musicians will converge on the city, enjoying lunch with local residents and spectators before finishing their journey at sunset, surrounded by candelight. … [Read more...] about Matera, European Capital of Culture 2019: watch the opening ceremony live
Plovdiv, Bulgaria's oldest city, has been officially inaugurated as the 2019 European Capital of Culture. Around 50,000 people gathered on Saturday to watch the opening show entitled "we are all colours" with 1,500 local and foreign artists performing on several stages. The city, which will share the title with the Italian city of Matera, is well known for its ethnic diversity. Many of its 340,000 inhabitants belong to the Turkish, Roma, Armenian, Greek and Jewish minorities, all of which have quite a strong influence on the city's vibrant cultural life. Some 350 cultural events are scheduled throughout the year, including an exhibition featuring fragments of the Berlin Wall to mark 30 years since its fall. Plovdiv claims to be the oldest continually inhabited European city, with more than 6,000 years of history. … [Read more...] about Plovdiv celebrates becoming European Capital of Culture