Wrocław capital of culture in 2016 Jan 29, 2016 19:42:46 GMT 1
Post by Bonobo on Jan 29, 2016 19:42:46 GMT 1
Wrocław's year as European Capital of Culture launched
The opening gala of Wrocław's year as a European Capital of Culture was held on Sunday evening in the
Lower Silesian city.
The city had been part of Germany (as Breslau) until Poland's borders were shifted west following World
War II, and Mayor Rafał Dutkiewicz reflected on this dual history in his opening address.
The mayor cited former Archbishop of Wrocław Bolesław Kominek, author of a historic 1965 letter by
Polish bishops to their German peers.
“Europe is the future - nationalism is of the past,” he stressed.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Culture Piotr Gliński said that he was delighted to represent the
government at the festivities.
Gliński praised Europe's Christian values and referred to Pope John Paul II and the current pontiff,
Pope Francis, for their words of “compassion and solidarity.”
The deputy prime minister also took the opportunity to state that “Polish democracy is stable”, to
which a portion of the crowd retorted with cries of “propaganda.”
A debate is to be held at the European Parliament on Tuesday amid concerns about the rule of law in
Poland after changes were pushed through by the governing Law and Justice (PiS) party to the media and
Wrocław shares the status of European Capital of Culture 2016 with the Spanish city of San Sebastian.
The opening gala included a concert, and a procession by 'The Four Spirits of Wrocław.'
Since 1985, cities have been picked annually for the prestigious status. Over 1,000 events are due to
take place in Wrocław as part of the initiative.