On March 21, 2017, Granada City Council’s Department for the Arts, in partnership with the Granada UNESCO City of Literature programme, and with the collaboration of the Asociación del Diente de Oro, joined in celebrating World Poetry Day for the first time. The event consisted of a big public poetry reading involving 18 city bookshops and 44 poets living in Granada, including three National Poetry Prize winners: Rafael Guillén, Ángeles Mora, and Luis García Montero. Our fourth winner, Antonio Carvajal, couldn’t attend due to a scheduling conflict, but he praised the initiative.
The bookshops welcomed the readings with enthusiasm, and the invited poets participated with enormous dedication. The result was an unanticipated success: 800 people filled the reading spaces, and the event became a huge public party.
[ See 2017 Audiovisual by Antonia Ortega Urbano ]
[ See the 2017 Poster designed by Rafa Simón ]
The experience was so positive that we decided to repeat the public celebration of World Poetry Day, with the intention for it to become an annual event. The beginning of the spring equinox will now be added as another date to the packed event calendar linked to the celebration of literature in Granada each year.
With the World Poetry Day celebration, we intend to elevate and support the city’s bookshops, to promote our authors — especially young and emerging ones, to promote the tradition of public poetry readings, to connect Granada with the best international cultural experiences, and to consolidate its image as a cultural city.
The invited poets have published at least one book of poems; they live in the city of Granada; are of various ages and vocations; and they possess different aesthetic approaches. The readings will last approximately 20 minutes and will take place between 6:00 pm and 9:00 pm on March 21, 2018 in the 26 assigned reading spaces. The event is about generating a festive and dynamic atmosphere. The public will have informative brochures with routes and schedules that will allow them to choose one poet or another according to their tastes and interests. Just like last year, it will be impossible to see them all.
Discounts in bookshops
Each bookshop participating in the project is committed to offering a special discount or gift to all people who buy a book of poems in their establishments from ten in the morning until nine the evening on March 21.
The UNESCO Literature Cities join the celebration
The project proposal for the annual celebration of World Poetry Day was presented by Granada to the UNESCO Cities of Literature at its meeting in Barcelona in April 2017. The cities warmly welcomed the possibility of jointly and simultaneously holding this event. In 2018 many of the cities will participate by contributing a specific act or event series locally, but they will also connect their respective celebrations with each other through social networks and a common communications strategy, in such a way that World Poetry Day in the Cities of Literature go on to become an international project. A joint poster will be designed, a joint press release will be generated, and the actions of the cities will be connected in united discourse.
Alsur, Atlas, Babel (Gran Capitán), Babel (San Juan de Dios), Bakakai, Boops, Centro Federico García Lorca, Centro José Guerrero, Imagina, Inglés Divertido, Juan de Mairena, Mercao Social, Nueva Gala, Paulinas, Picasso, Picasso Infantil, Praga, La Qarmita, Reciclaje, Sostiene Pereira, Tienda de la Alhambra (Reyes Católicos), Troa Dauro, Ubú Libros, Un mundo feliz, Urbana Vergeles.
Poets from Granada
Carlos Allende, Rosaura Álvarez, Jesús Amaya, Carlos Andreoli, Miguel Ángel Barrera, Javier Benítez, Marga Blanco, Paula Bozalongo, Begoña Callejón, Lola Callejón, Carmen Canet, Virgilio Cara, Pedro Luis Casanova, Eduardo Castro, Juan José Castro, Mónica Doña, Pedro Enríquez, Mónica Francés, Juan Carlos Friebe, Víctor Miguel Gallardo, Azucena G. Blanco, Jesús García Calderón, Juan Andrés García Román, Trinidad Gan, José Ganivet Zarcos, Teresa Gómez, José Miguel Gómez Acosta, Ioana Gruia, Fernando Jaén, Ignacio López de Aberasturi, Juan E. Martín, Rubén Martín, Manuel M. Mateo, Luis Melgarejo, Jesús Montiel, Gracia Morales, Carmina Moreno Arenas, Ana Morilla, Nieves Muriel, Eugenio Navarro, Alejandro Pedregosa, Juan Peregrina, Ramón Repiso, Ángel Rodríguez, Daniel Rodríguez Moya, José Carlos Rosales, F. David Ruiz, Alfonso Salazar, Álvaro Salvador, Fernando Soriano, Marina Tapia, Ayes Tortosa.
Invited European poets
From Nottingham, United Kingdom: Georgina Wilding. From Ljubljana, Slovenia: Anja Golob. From Romania: Petronela Rotar, Ana Barton, Alice Popescu, Ana Manon, and Gelu Vlaşin.
Participation by Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature and the UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Creative Cities
The management team of Notthingham UNESCO City of Literature, directed by Sandeep Mahal, will travel to Granada to accompany the poet, Georgina Wilding, who will engage in the World Poetry Day celebration with her colleagues from Granada. In addition, Maria Francesca Merloni, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Creative Cities, will visit Granada to get involved in World Poetry Day, and to share experiences with participating poets.
Spaces for children’s poetry
The Picasso bookshop will hold a special session of its morning program “Conoce tus librerías” (Get to know your bookshops) for city school students. In the evening, between 18:00 and 19:00, World Poetry Day will once again take care of the little ones. Special readings of children’s poetry will be held at the Picasso Infantil, the Un mundo feliz, and the Imagina bookshops. In addition, the poets and cultural curators of Nottingham will read poetry in English at the Inglés Divertido and Boops bookshops. Also, for the fifth consecutive year the Municipal Public Libraries will organize a large gathering of city school students, called Rap Poesía, throughout the morning of March 21. It will be at the Federico García Lorca Center.
Other activities. Escaparte de Poesía
Escaparate de Poesía, coordinated by Sergio Escribano, was created in 2016 under the banner of the Granada Poetry Slam and enhances the celebration of World Poetry Day by means of a special reading at 7:30 p.m. at El Higo, in the heart of the Albaicín district. Participating are: Jess Modlov, Carmen Sánchez, Lena Larios, Carmen Barranco, La Grieta y el Quebranto, Cápsula del Tiempo and Open Mic.
Other activities. Connecting with World Forestry Day
World Forestry Day is also celebrated on March 21, according to an agreement of the United Nations Organization of 1971. Ecologists in Action will organize a day of celebration on this day in the Espacio V Centenario at the UGR. A poetry reading by Pedro Enríquez with Ángel Alonso on guitar will be presented among other performances. It will be at 7:30 p.m.
Poets’ All Nighter at La Tertulia
La Tertulia, managed by Horacio Rébora, is a legendary Granada venue that’s been linked to the best poetry and literature since the late 1970’s. Once the poetry readings in the bookshops are finished, those who wish to are invited to meet at La Tertulia to continue reading and talking. Special surprises will be revealed after 10 p.m.