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Esch2022, the countdown has started

By press release February 26, 2021
Open Market Days Open Market Days Photo by Esch2022

Exactly one year until the starting shot: the European Capital of Culture Esch2022 will officially open in February 2022. To this end, the southern Luxembourg city of Esch-Alzette has joined  forces with 10 surrounding municipalities in Luxembourg and 8 municipalities in neighboring France, the CCPHVA  (Communauté de Communes Pays Haut Val d'Alzette). 

The amalgamation of municipalities on the Luxembourg and French sides is representative of Europe: regardless of the national borders, these municipalities have always been closely linked, also due to their industrial past and its change. Joint implementation as the European Capital of Culture is only logical. "The appointment as European Capital of Culture offers the unique opportunity to present not only our region, but also the European core values ​​and visions through art and culture as well as the dynamism of the southern region with its cultural heritage across borders." General Director Esch2022. "The aim of the activities," continues Braun, "is to sustainably develop the formerly industrial region and turn it into an interesting, To transform a versatile and innovative home and tourist region. Esch2022 offers numerous long-term opportunities here. "

Remix Culture , basis for the Esch2022 program

The theme of the program is Remix Culture and tells the story of an industrial region in the middle of Europe, its development and that of its society. It's about identity and the European idea. 

The leitmotif Remix Culture with its four sub-themes Remix Yourself , Remix Nature , Remix Art and Remix Europe forms the basis for the complete program, which the Esch2022 team is currently preparing with great commitment together with project partners. This includes around 140 projects implemented by municipalities, other institutions, cultural and social institutions, associations and artists. The participation of citizens in the design of these activities as well as the sustainable development of their homeland are an essential characteristic of Esch2022. At the press day, some of them presented their projects, grouped according to the thematic dimensions Voices for the Future , Future Europeans , Sustainable Futures and Future Memories . There are also two more, Performing Futures and Future Formarts .

• In Voices for the Future , people and topics are given a voice in order to make them more heard.

• Future Europeans describes projects with a cross-border or international focus.

• Sustainable Futures is about the sustainable development of the region or the environment.

• Future Memories forms the bridge between the past and the future. Here, projects are presented that are being used for a new purpose today or in the future.

• Performing Futures summarizes performances and other performances.

• Digital projects, including art projects, are collected under the Future Formarts subtopic .

"The program is very diverse and should offer something for every taste", explained Françoise Poos, director of the cultural program. "With Esch2022 we want to tell the story of our region from the steel industry to the digital age." Current social issues are permanently integrated: What is our identity? How do we create a sustainable society? How does art position itself here, especially in connection with society and technology? Citizens and guests are invited to participate and to position themselves.

Issues such as immigration in the multinational Luxembourg, but also the industrial heritage and the development of the region towards a state-of-the-art location for science and start-ups play a major role in the projects. Throughout the year, numerous events are held in Esch-Alzette with well-known partners such as the Escher Theater, the Resistance Museum and the Belval district of Esch, but also with the organization Le Pôle de l'image in Villerupt (France) and NEST (Theater in Thionville) offered; In addition, each municipality is the focus of the presentations for one month each.

Another large thematic block, the Future Memories , includes projects that take up the historical and transfer them to the present or future. Immigration and the coexistence of different cultures are also a recurring theme in the projects. Music and theater performances are offered in many, even unusual places. This is complemented by collaborations with cultural institutions from Europe such as Ars Electronica in Linz (Austria), the Center for Art and Media (ZKM) in Karlsruhe (Germany) or the House of Electronic Arts(HeK) in Basel (Switzerland) the Esch2022 program, the performances of which can be seen in the Möllerei next year. The Möllerei and other buildings also belong to the historically preserved part of the Belval district of Escher, which is representative of the dynamic change in the region from an industrial location to a modern residential, work and nightlife district.

Urban Time Travel Belval, a virtual reality bus tour through this district that the Esch2022 team is currently developing with partners, is part of the wide range of tourist offers that are intended to delight locals and guests in the long term.

Bringing tourist and cultural highlights to life for citizens and guests

Tourism, culture and sustainable development are important cornerstones for Esch2022: Tourism is to be strengthened in the long term and the diverse cross-border culture in the region is to be given a platform for the long-term development of the region.

In addition to the VR tour, a specially developed mobile application offers insider tips in the region, which can be explored in various excursion tours with many highlights. In addition, the Esch2022 team will offer its own printed travel guide at the end of the year. Citizens and guests can explore the region on the Minett Cycle Tour or the Minett Trail, for example, and then share their impressions on the Esch2022 travel blog.

Political representatives support Esch2022

Both states and the regional actors are accompanying the Esch2022 projects in order to arouse the interest of the general public in these activities. Esch2022 is a special lever to reinvent Northern Lorraine in connection with Luxembourg, especially in the areas of digital, teaching and research. Furthermore, artistic skills are bundled across borders, also in research and education, and thus the regional cultural offer is upgraded. For Georges Mischo, President Esch2022, this major project is a unique opportunity to grow economically, in terms of tourism and culture, but also to grow closer together in the border region. "For me, the aim of Esch2022 is that our citizens and our guests go home after an event or a tour with the idea of that they would like to live here or that they would definitely like to visit us again. Our region simply belongs on their bucket list. "

Partner of the Esch2022 projects

Various partners provide support in the preparation and implementation of the numerous projects. The main task of the Escher Partnerships team is to bring companies and projects into contact with one another and to facilitate possible cooperation. "Especially in the current situation, we are encouraged by the fact that many partners stand by their commitment in solidarity in order to make Esch2022 a success and to advance our region together in the long term," said Anne-Catherine Richard, Head of Partnerships, happily about the commitment . While some partnerships are nearing completion, a few more will be established in the coming weeks.

outlook

The European Capital of Culture will open in February 2022. The preparations for the project team of around 25, the project partners and the municipalities themselves are in full swing to allow locals and visitors to rediscover and get to know their homeland and this cross-border region for a year. The Esch2022 team informs interested parties about other projects from the Esch2022 program both on Esch2022's own channels (website and social media channels) and media representatives at other press breakfasts. The next press breakfast is planned for April 29, 2021.

 

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