Conference: Art as a Form of Freedom During the Totalitarian Communist Regime. Forbidden music and fate of repressed musicians in the period 9.1944-10.1989

Event Date: October 23-24, 2021

Link for online registration and streaming:…/reg…/WN_41LtiOznTGqxUgOXRrRoTQ
I. The Conference is part of the international project REMEMBER: Research and Music CommEMorating the Victims of Totalitarian Regimes in Bulgaria and Eastern EuRope. The project involves 5 non-governmental organizations from 5 countries, which deal with the history of the totalitarian communist regimes in the former socialist countries. 
It is designed to promote civil participation and engagement in events commemorating the victims of totalitarian regime, with a special emphasis on involvement of youth in dedicated activities requiring active input and targeted efforts for developing of common European consciousness of the historical heritage.The Conference “Art as a Form of Freedom During the Totalitarian Communist Regime. Forbidden music and fate of repressed musicians in the period 9.1944-10.1989 “ brings together representatives of the Bulgarian research community, musicians and the project partners from Germany, Croatia, Romania and Albania who will discuss on themes related to the culture and trauma in the totalitarian regimes. The conference will be accompanied by the opening of a traveling exhibition, which contains 30 boards with the stories of the forbidden music and the fates of musicians during communism and a second exhibition with portraits of prisoners, secretly drawn by Petar Baichev – a doctor of law and artist- during his almost five years stay in Belene camp.Part of the conference is the visit to the Belene Labor Camp on Persin Island.The new published disk with the songs from the REMEMBER SONG CONTEST will be presented.

II. Organizers 
Belene Island Foundation, Bulgaria,
Maximilian Kolbe Foundation, Germany,
Pitesti Prison Memorial Foundation, Romania,
Goli Island Foundation “ANTE ZEMLJAR”, Croatia,
Justice and Peace Foundation, Albania,
The contest is organized with the financial support of the Europe for Citizens program.The project is financed from the “Europe for Citizens” programme, Strand 1: European remembrance; Priority 2: Civil society and civic participation under totalitarian regimes”.

Saturday, 23 October 2021, “Blessed Evgeni Bosilkov” Cultural Center
10:30-18:00 UTC/GMT +3:00 hours

10:30-11:00 OPENING 
– Alexander Genchev, organizer – opening
Father Paolo Cortezi, parish priest -welcoming speech
Bishop Strahil Kavalenov, Diocese of Nikopol – welcoming speech
Milen Dulev, mayor of Belene – welcoming speech

11:00-12:45 Panel 1:
Culture as resistance. Everyday life and violence during the communist period. 
Moderator: Daniela Gorcheva – magazine Dialogue, Netherlands
Evelina Kelbecheva – Historian 
Georgi Lozanov – Culturologist, journalist
Boris Serginov – Faculty of Design, New Bulgarian University
Krassimir Iliev – Sofia City Art Gallery- Historian, writer, journalist
Momchil Metodiev – Historian, writer, journalist

13:00-14:00 Lunch, hotel Prestige

14:30-16:00 Panel 2:
Communism & Trauma: Individual and socio-cultural trajectories
Moderator: Lilia Topouzova- Department of History & ICCIT , University of Toronto (online)
Svetlozar Vasssilev – Bulgarian Institute for Human relations, New Bulgarian University
Andrea Favaro – Faculty of Law of Trento, Faculty of Canon Law in Venice
Krasimimira Butseva-London College of Communication, University of the Arts London (online)
Tania Ganeva-Journalist, USA (online)

16:00-16:30 Coffee break, “Blessed Evgeni Bosilkov” Cultural Center

16:30-18:00 Panel 3 (MUSICIANS):
Music during the plague
Moderator: Vasil Varbanov
Angel Angelov-Djandema, 
Borislav Yotzov, 
Ersin Mustafov, 
Ivan Lechev, 
Petar Tsankov, 
Vasco The Patch, 
Vassil Gurov, 

Sunday, 24.10.2021, “Blessed Evgeni Bosilkov” Cultural Center
9:00-19:00 UTC/GMT +3:00 hours

9:30-11:30 Panel 4:  
Presenting the Labor Camps in Bulgaria, Albania, Romania and Croatia
Moderator: Jörg Lüer 
Alexander Genchev – REMEMBER Project
Mihail Marinov – Belene Island Foundation, Bulgaria
Jörg Lüer – Germany 
Luigj Mila – Justice and Peace , Albania
Maria Axinte – Pitesti Prison Memorial Foundation, Romania 
Darko Bavoljak – Goli otok – “ANTE ZEMLJAR”, Croatia

11:30-12:30 Lunch, “Blessed Evgeni Bosilkov” Cultural Center (Fast food)
12:30-15:30 – Visit of the Belene Labor Camp on Persin Island 

15:30-16:00 Coffee break, “Blessed Evgeni Bosilkov” Cultural Center

16:00-17:00 Open discussion
Closing of the conference
– Alexander Genchev, organizer
– Father Paolo Cortezi, parish priest
– Milen Dulev, mayor of Belene

17:00-20:00 Free time
20:00-21:00 Dinner, Hotel Prestige