The Hellenic Authors Society, the National Book Centre of Greece (EKEBI), and the Municipality of Thessaloniki are co-organizing the 1st Interbalkan Poetry Festival within the framework of the 9th Thessaloniki International Book Fair, to take place from May 24th to May 27th.
“The idea of an Interbalkan Poetry festival was first introduced in 2010”, said Elena Houzouri, secretary general of the Hellenic Authors Society to Greek daily Vima. The initial idea belonged to Mrs. Houzouri and concerned the celebration of the World Poetry Day on March 21 in a major poetry festival in Athens, which would highlight the common and different aspects of poetical creation in the broader Balkan region.
Last year, the efforts failed despite the positive response of Balkan literary figures.
This year, however, with the contribution of the Municipality of Thessaloniki and the economic support of EKEBI, the 1st Interbalkan Poetry Festival will become reality.
Poets from the countries of Serbia, Romania, Turkey, FYROM, Albania, Montenegro and Bosnia-Herzegovina will join the Poetry Festival with one representative poet, while twelve poets will represent Greece.
During the Festival, the poets will present the poetic creations of their countries in an open discussion event and will answer questions. Furthermore, they will read their own poems in their mother tongue, which will be accompanied by a Greek translation.
This year’s exhibition will present the history and culture of Thessaloniki, while Serbia will be the guest of honor. The Fair will include exhibits of historical works and photographs and screenings of audio-visual material, as well as book presentations and other events.
The anniversary tribute focuses on the historic liberation of Thessaloniki during the Balkan Wars. It has been one hundred years since Greek forces entered the city, making a decisive impact on the course of twentieth-century Greek history.
The ninth edition of Thessaloniki Book Fair will be held in pavilions 13 and 15 of the Helexpo International Exhibition Centre.
Helexpo S.A. is the national exhibition agency of Greece and has the exclusive right to use Thessaloniki International Exhibition Centre, which covers an area of 180,000 square metres, located in the city centre. The largest organizer of exhibitions, conferences and cultural events in South-Eastern Europe, Helexpo is based in Thessaloniki. It receives more than two million visitors a year.