Pilsen launches European Capital of Culture 2015

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EUROCITIES member Pilsen is one of the two European Capitals of Culture in 2015.

EUROCITIES member Pilsen and the city of Mons in Belgium are the 2015 European Capitals of Culture. The title, which was launched in 1985, has so far been awarded to 50 cities, many of them EUROCITIES members.

As part of its year, Pilsen will host over 600 events, including theatre productions, concerts, exhibitions and art installations. The city held its official opening ceremony on 16-18 January, which included four different processions designed to mimic the four rivers flowing through the city, which then met in the city centre. This was followed by a symphony of bells, including the first sounding of the city’s new bells, followed by a series of different activities in different locations around the city. Find out more at: www.plzen2015.cz.

The Capital of Culture initiative is designed to highlight the richness and diversity of cultures in Europe; celebrate the cultural features Europeans share; increase Europeans’ sense of belonging to a common cultural area; and foster the contribution of culture to the development of cities.

The initiative has proven to be an excellent lever for encouraging regeneration in cities, raising their profile both at home and abroad, and boosting tourism and cultural offerings.

The Capitals of Culture until 2018 have already been selected and include EUROCITIES members Donostia San Sebastian and Wroclaw in 2016; and Aarhus in 2017. Paphos in Cyprus also hosts in 2017; Leeuwarden in the Netherlands and Valetta in Malta in 2018; and Matera in Italy and Plovdiv in Bulgaria in 2019. 

The European Parliament and Council adopted a new framework for the initiative from 2019 onwards. It includes a chronological list of member states that can host the title from 2020-2033, and makes it possible for cities in EU candidate or potential candidate countries to host the title every third year as of 2021. We helped shape the new framework by contributing to the initial consultation on the new framework and responding to the Commission’s proposal. You can find all related information at the link below.

The Commission published the call for the 2021 title in December 2014. Cities wishing to take part in future Capitals of Culture competitions should await the announcement of a competition in their own country.

For more information on the European Capitals of Culture, visit: http://ec.europa.eu/programmes/creative-europe/actions/capitals-culture_en.htm