The history

HOW IT WAS BORN

The Sete Sóis Sete Luas Festival experience was born by a group of students’ curiosity from the Pontedera High School, supported by a Portuguese writer’ help.

These young dreamers were so keen on theatre that they founded the GRUPPO TEATRALE IMMAGINI, in 1987. Several awards immediately followed their play “Edipo Re”. Eager to go beyond Italian boundaries, they decided to spread their wings toward the Alentejo (Portugal), where they successfully perform in many shows and got in touch with José Saramago, inviting him to Pontedera. The Portuguese writer not only agreed on coming to Pontedera, but he also surrendered his copyrights on the Italian version of his book “L’anno 1993”, to benefit the students. In 1993 the Sete Sóis Sete Luas Festival, which has always been directed by Marco Abbondanza, was born. Consequently a great cultural exchange between Italy and Portugal arose. In 21 years time (1993-2013) many other countries joined the Festival, while the project was spreading and growing: Greece in 1993, Spain in 1997, Capo Verde in 1998, France and Morocco in 2005, Croatia in 2008, Brazil in 2009, Romania in 2012 and Slovenia and Tunis in 2013. The Festival policy has been to prefer peripheral areas to the big cities.

 

A MILITANT HONORARY PRESIDENT AND AN ILLUMINIST SYMBOL

José Saramago gave to the SSSL Festival both the concrete and philosophical tools to start this wonderful journey around the Mediterranean and lusophone world. Concretely because he has always been carefully and actively present since the beginning. Philosophically because the Festival was inspired by his novel “Memorial do convento”, whose characters are visionary dreamers who wonder around the medieval Europe, oppressed by the shadow of Inquisition. Balzar Sete Sois and Blimunda Sete Luas create the “passarola”, a flying car which is been taken as the Festival symbol thanks to its symbolic and evocative power. It’s a metaphor of dreams and utopian freedom. The Festival wants to trigger the power that art, music and literature have to go beyond everyday reality.

 

WHAT IS IT

• A cultural Network of 30 cities of 13 countries – Brazil, Cape Verde, Croatia, France, Greece, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain and Tunis- that highlight direct relationships with small centres and with artists.

• A journey in the Mediterranean and lusophone world: a journey made of meetings and exchanges. The ones who travel are the artists, the cultural operators and the spectators themselves.

• A Festival that seeks for people and not for squares or monuments.

• A Festival of the musical creation: it produces one or more multicultural orchestra every year.

• A cultural tourism flight; the public can follow it in its various stops, travelling around the Mediterranean and lusophone world.

 

PRIZES AND INTERNATIONAL AWARDS

• Twice the support of the Kaleidoscope Program of the European Commission

• 6 times the support of Cultural Program 2000 of the European Commission and once the support of the Interreg Medocc Program.

• On January 20th 2009 and 2013, the SSSL Festival has been presented to the European Parliament in Brussels in a special audition.

• On April 16th 2009 the Festival received the well-known Spanish prize “Caja Grandana” for International Cooperation. The 50.000 euro prize is invested in the building of the new SSSL Centrum in Ribeira Grande in the island of Sao Antão , Cape Verde.

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