Fira Mediterrania in Manresa

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Fira Mediterrània of Manresa (Catalonia-Spain) is a performing arts fair rooted in Mediterranean tradition. It has two main areas of focus: popular culture (based on a dialogue between traditional, regional culture and creative innovation) and world music. It has been held every year since 1998 and has become a setting for exchange professionals that sell and buy productions.

"A vore" at Fira Mediterrània de Manresa 2015 (Photo: Josep Tomàs)

Most activities are open to the public at large and the Fira uses a range of stage areas in the city centre. Despite this, activities exclusively aimed at industry professionals are a cornerstone of the Fira. These include industry conferences, a recruitment place, partnership network meetings and presentations. Together with FiràTarrega (the international market for performing arts), Mercat de Música Viva de Vic (Vic live music market), the Sismòfraf d'Olot, the Mostra d'Igualada and the Fira Trapezi, the Fira Mediterrània completes the Generalitat (Regional Government) of Catalonia’s map of artistic marketplaces in Catalonia.

Fira Mediterrània is part of the Anna Lindh Foundation, the Spanish Performing Arts Trade Fair Coordinator (COFAE), the European Forum of Worldwide Music Festivals (EFWMF), the International Network for Contemporary Performing Arts (IETM) and the Apropa Cultura program.

Characteristics[edit]

  • Fira is an interdisciplinary event and the programme covers all artistic languages – visual arts, circus, dance, exhibitions, music, storytelling and theatre. The programmed shows are in different formats - small, medium or large-scale - in venues or in the street, aimed both at adult and at family audiences.

20th edition will be held from 5 to 8 October 2015.

Arts projects can be submitted under two main themes:

  • Popular Culture: based on elements that include the transfer of heritage, the crossover between contemporary creation and traditional regional culture, participation and the increase of the social base of culture. Suitable projects: Traditional popular culture productions // Urban and street art // Community and social inclusion projects // Interactive and/or participative shows // Family shows, amongst others.
  • World Music, with special emphasis on the Mediterranean region.

Fira Business Area is a networking hub for artists, creators, booking agents, cultural agents, public and private institutions, third sector organisations and cultural industry associations. It promotes discussion on new and emerging opportunities from an international perspective, based on themes that include, among others, the relationship between tradition and performing arts, the community, participation, and the benefits to society stemming from cultural initiatives.

For three days, the Fira Business Area becomes a nerve centre of professional activity, with exhibitions, a professional conference, presentations of cultural projects, showcases, and speed dating and networking events.

An innovative, enriching aspect of these initiatives is the fact that at the Fira, unlike other forums for debate, some of the projects can also be seen on stage.

Professional events are not confined exclusively to the dates of Fira Mediterrània. Throughout the year, Fira Mediterrània also organises other activities, such as roundtable debates and a professional conference.

Fira Mediterrània has an International and National Plan of Action, which aims to increase the event's scope with new areas of initiative and to renew the main existing agreements. Of noteworthy interest is the Euroregional Heritage and Creation Forum project, approved by the European Union, which consists of three agents from Occitania, Catalonia and the Balearic Islands that work together to exemplify the social, cultural and linguistic areas they have in common. The Plan of Action also includes the consolidation of agreements with countries such as Algeria, Germany, Italy, France, Portugal and with regions such as Valencia, the Balearic Islands, Aragon, the Basque Country and Castille and Leon. It also sets out the launch of new projects with countries such as Morocco and regions such as Brittany in France.

Fira Mediterrània Manresa-Catalonia is made possible through the Generalitat of Catalonia’s Culture Department and Manresa City Council, which comprise the organising foundation. The main private partner is ‘La Caixa’ Obra Social (Social and Cultural Outreach Project) and the official sponsor is Estrella Damm.

Objectives[edit]

  • Boosts the implementation and dissemination of national and international projects that fuse contemporary creativity with traditional and regional culture;
  • Is the nerve centre of trends and ideas in the realm of traditional culture and promotes connections with community work, participation to increase people’s involvement in culture;
  • Consolidate its reputation as a leading world music market in Spain;
  • Promote the export potential of Catalan artists and culture;
  • Act as a gateway into Spain for howcases international theatre and music projects;
  • Acts as a connection hub for professionals on an international scale.

Artistic direction[edit]

Former and current artistic directors of the Fira Mediterrània Manresa-Catalonia include:

  • Lluís Puig (1998–2000).
  • Jordi Bertran (2001–2005).
  • Toni Xuclà (2006–2007).
  • Tere Almar (2008–2011).
  • David Ibáñez, since 2012.

Discography[edit]

  • 16a Fira Mediterrània de Manresa, Enderrock, 216, 2013.
  • 15a Fira Mediterrània de Manresa, Enderrock, 204, 2012.
  • 14a Fira Mediterrània de Manresa, Sons de la Mediterrània, 24, 2011.
  • 13a Fira Mediterrània de Manresa, Sons de la Mediterrània, 18, 2010.
  • 12 Mediterrània. Fira d'espectacles d'arrel tradicional, Sons de la Mediterrània, 13, 2009.
  • 11 Mediterrània. Fira d'espectacles d'arrel tradicional, Sons de la Mediterrània, 7, 2008.
  • 10ª Mediterrània. Fira d'espectacles d'arrel,Sons de la Mediterrània, 1 / World Music Magazine, 87, 2007.
  • 9a Fira Mediterrània d'espectacles d'arrel tradicional, Folc, 31 / World Music Magazine, 81, 2006.
  • 8ª Fira d'espectacles d'arrel tradicional Mediterrània, Folc, 25, 2005.
  • Mediterrània. 7ª Fira d'espectacles d'arrel tradicional, Folc, 19, 2004.
  • 6ª Fira d'espectacles d'arrel tardicional a Manresa, Folc, 14, 2003.
  • Fira d'espectacles d'arrel tradicional Manresa, Folc, 9, 2002.
  • Fira d'espectacles d'arrel tradicional, Folc, 5, 2001.
  • 3a Fira d'espectacles d'arrel tradicional de Manresa, Folc, 1, 2000.

Awards and recognition[edit]

The 'Teresa Rebull' award for the best music production and traditional culture project

The 'Teresa Rebull' award for the best music production and traditional culture project is announced by the Generalitat (Regional Government) of Catalonia's Culture Department and Fira Mediterrània. The goal of this award is to promote music projects that take traditional and folkloric culture as their creative basis by contributing to the funding of the production process, as far as arrangements, management and staging are concerned, among other aspects.

The award pays tribute to the career of Teresa Rebull who was a singer, painter and tireless activist of Catalan culture, feminism and Anti-Francoism. She died in April 2015.

Recognition in Bogotá

Fira Mediterrània Manresa-Catalonia was recognised by the Colombia Ministry of Culture, the University of Rosario in Bogotá and the Ramon Llull Institute of Catalonia-Baleares as a cultural practice of excellence, at the Cultural Management Conference held in March 2010 as part of the Ibero-American Theatre Festival of Bogatá. The two Catalan speaking regions were invited to take part in this event as guests of honour.

External links[edit]

References[edit]