The ASEM Cultural Festival, Asia & Europe: Cultures Connect, a public arts festival featuring 11 arts events was held over 5 days across 7 different venues in Madrid, Spain, alongside the 13th ASEM Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (ASEMFMM14). A special curtain raiser featuring a music concert was held in Brussels, Belgium in the lead up to the main Festival in Spain. The vibrant showcasing of dance, music and digital art events from Asia and Europe attracted over 1,000 audiences.

Highlights of the Festival programme:

  • French musician, Nguyên Lê, led a collaboration with 6 musicians from diverse musical backgrounds highlighting Asia-Europe cultural connections while merging jazz, traditional and world music in Nguyên Lê ‘Saiyuki’ & Friends
  • Kizuna, a koto, guitar & kotsuzumi concert, presented a musical dialogue through the medium of string instruments and percussion from Japan and Spain
  • In Rasa y Duende, physical theatre, eloquent movements & symbolic gestures inspired by performing arts from India and Spain presented the poetic world of Federico Garcia Lorca 
  • With 15 artists on stage, Poong Ryu presented an unconventional interpretation of traditional dance and music from Korea 
  • An unusual fusion of Carnatic and Hindustani music, the 2 main classical musical schools from India, was at the core of Rudraksham
  • Between Tiny Cities, a hip-hop performance dovetailing b-boy vocabulary with contemporary dance was the result of a cultural exchange project between Australia and Cambodia  closed the Festival
  • Exploring Asia and Europe through a virtual lens offered an immersive experience to uncover traditional art through the extraordinary minds of digital artists
  • Spotlight on Southeast Asia presented the diversity of the cultures, traditions and identities of the countries of the ASEAN region 

This celebration of artistic and creative diversity from Asia and Europe was organised by Casa Asia with the support of ASEF and was funded by the European Union (EU) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation of Spain. Furthermore, Centre for Fine Arts-BOZAR, Embassy of India, Embassy of Korea, Fantasium, Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), Japan Foundation, Korean Culture Centre, Madrid City Council, Madrid Destino and Ministry of Culture, Thailand provided additional support in presenting an engaging programme to the audiences in Madrid and Brussels.

View the photo highlights of the Festival: ASEM Cultural Festival 2019-Highlights