Friday, 11 February 2011

Brighton Festival 2011 Guest Director Aung San Suu Kyi

Image courtesy of Brighton Festival 2011.

You may have heard by now that the 2011 Guest Artistic Director for the 2011 Brighton Festival is the courageous leader, human rights advocate and Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi.

Following in the footsteps of Anish Kapoor and Brian Eno, the Guest Artistic Director position has become an integral part of the increasingly renowned Brighton Festival and its a real credit to the Festival that they have secured such an incredible political figure.

Although as such a liberal city, Brighton does also feel the perfect choice for such a figure too.

Aung San Suu Kyi has fought passionately for over two decades for democracy and human rights in Burma and taken to the heart of this year’s Brighton Festival is her plea ‘use your liberty to promote ours’, with artists, both local and international, presenting a powerful and wide-ranging programme.

2011 Festival Highlights

Aung San Suu Kyi is an inspiration to many people around the world and particularly to many within the arts community. Some of the Brighton Festival 2011 highlight events include:

  • a new co-commissioned work by Turkish artist Kutlu─č Ataman
  • a revival of the acclaimed site-specific theatre commission The New World Order by theatre company Hydrocracker based on Pinter’s political plays
  • Beethoven’s powerful hymn to freedom Fidelio in a concert performance with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment conducted by Adam Fischer
  • Asian Dub Foundation, Music of Resistance.

The books and debate programme also takes up this year’s freedom themes with a fascinating line up including:

  • Peter Taylor the BBC investigative journalist and author of Talking to Terrorists
  • Izzeldin Abuelaish, author of I Shall Not Hate
  • a debate on ‘The Future of Burma’ with Sue Lloyd Roberts, Zoya Phan – Burmese refugee and activist with Burma Campaign and Robert Gordon, Ambassador to Burma 1995-1999
  • a discussion entitled ‘Article 19’ on Freedom of Information and the right to know with Julian Assange.

It's not expected that Aung San Suu Kyi will actually attend this year's festival, however she has stated:

“It is especially pleasing for me to see, albeit remotely, Brighton Festival taking shape this year, and to think that so many people will come together in May to celebrate great art and experience the inner peace it brings...I wish everyone involved in Brighton Festival this year – the artists and the audience – the happiest of times. And thank you – please continue to use your liberty to promote ours.”

Find out more about Brighton Festival

Brighton Festival and Brighton Festival Fringe take Brighton by storm every year for 3 culture busting weeks during May. You can also read what the Guardian have to say on their website.

To find out more about Festivals in Brighton throughout the whole year, visit our Festivals in Brighton Timeline.


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