Timisoara won the title of 2021 European Capital of Culture. Many cities from several countries have competed for this title, including cities from Romania, such as Baia Mare, Bucharest and Cluj-Napoca.
The title was given by an international jury which is assigned by the European Union yesterday at a press conference in Bucharest. The result was announced by Steve Green, the president of the expert jury, Karel Bartak, Head of Culture Unit of the European commission and Timisoara mayor Nicolae Robu.
Karel Bartak stated that the concept of European capital of culture promotes intercultural dialogue and promotes the feeling of belonging to the European Union and brings Europe closer to people.He added that cultural values are bringing people together and culture is one of the factors on which the union was built.
The slogan of Timisoara campaign for the title was ” Shine your light. Light up your city.” The group that campaigned for Timisoara reminded that Timisoara was the first city in Europe to have electric street lights in 1884. The 1989 revolution also started in Timisoara.
The title of European Capital of Culture means that for a year they will have an innovative cultural programme that will promote the diversity, richness and similarity of European culture. Many international tourists are invited to experience the programme. Until 2019 60 European cities will have this title.
The ” european capital” idea came from Melina Mercouri and the first nominated city in 1985 was Athens. Melina Mercouri noted in 1985
Culture is the soul of Society. Therefore, our foremost duty is to look at the foundations and nature of this Community. This does not mean that we should impose our ideas. On the contrary, we must recognize the diversities and the differences amongst the people of Europe
The European capitals of culture initiative is designed to:
- Highlight the richness and diversity of cultures in Europe;
- Celebrate the cultural features Europeans share;
- Increase European citizens’ sense of belonging to a common cultural area;
- Foster the contribution of culture to the development of cities.
The event is an opportunity in:
- Regenerating cities;
- Raising the international profile of cities;
- Enhancing the image of cities in the eyes of their own inhabitants;
- Breathing new life into a city’s culture;
- Boosting tourism.