Engaging With Diversity Rewarded - The Routes Award

Jan 28, 2010, 06:39 ET from European Cultural Foundation

AMSTERDAM, January 28 /PRNewswire/ -- On Tuesday 26 January 2010, the Routes Princess Margriet Award for Cultural Diversity was presented at the Royal Flemish Theatre in Brussels, Belgium. The awards, organised by the European Cultural Foundation (ECF), were presented by HRH Princess Margriet to two innovative voices in theatre, Borka Pavicevic and Stefan Kaegi, who have inspired direct communication between vast varieties of people. They each received a prize of EUR25,000 to support their future endeavours.

Borka Pavicevic (1947, Montenegro) is dramaturge and publisher, who in 1994 founded Belgrade's Centre for Cultural Decontamination (Centar Za Kulturnu Dekontaminaciju: CZKD) to fight the homogenisation of culture under the Milocevic regime. As a creative space for cultural exchange, the centre has since supported thousands of independent artistic productions and public gatherings that aimed for the development of civil society in Serbia and former Yugoslavia. The centre's relevance only continues as Serbia takes its initial steps towards joining the EU.

Stefan Kaegi (1972, Switzerland) is an international theatre-maker whose productions are often anchored in the social reality of odd places and always feature real people playing themselves. For example, Cargo Sofia seats the audience in the back of a cargo truck driven by two Bulgarian truck drivers who present what their Europe is all about. Kaegi was unable to attend since his current project, Best Before, will be premiering shortly in Vancouver. Other of his works will take place throughout the year on streets, parks, backs of trucks, tops of high-rise buildings, internet and, yes, even in theatres.

Among those attending the ceremony were HRH Princess Margriet of the Netherlands, HRH Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands, Secretary General of Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ed Kronenburg and EU Commission Representative Xavier Troussard. During an onstage discussion, Troussard applauded the two winners as sources of inspiration: "We must multiply those kinds of spaces, whether real or virtual, where individual citizens can experience for themselves the value of diversity." The European Cultural Foundation was very pleased with this statement coming from the heart of Brussels as it sums up their main goal.

The award reflects the ECF's over 50 years of commitment to help create and reinforce a coherent, inclusive cultural space across Europe and beyond its borders. The foundation does this primarily by stimulating cultural cooperation and strong cultural policies.

A more in-depth report with interview/profiles with the winners will appear shortly at:

http://routesaward.eurocult.org

For the publisher: The Routes Princess Margriet Award for Cultural Diversity was established in 2008 as tribute to Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands. For over 24 years, she acted as chairperson of the ECF. The Routes Award is an initiative of the European Cultural Foundation (ECF) in cooperation with the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and is made possible by the generous support of ACLEU (Association of Charity Lotteries) and the Rabobank Foundation. For more information see: http://routesaward.eurocult.org

SOURCE European Cultural Foundation