This year’s third annual Porto Etno – World Music and Gastro Festival of Rijeka 2020 – European Capital of Culture was held from 6 to 8 September 2019 and attracted more than 3,000 visitors, who enjoyed an eventful gastro, music, folk dance, circus and children’s programme at three locations in the centre of Rijeka over the course of three days.
For three days, the Porto Etno – World Music and Gastro Festival offered a sublime selection of world music and ethnic bands from all over the world that delighted the crowd and made them dance, in addition to a gastro programme, which included members of the communities of national minorities of Rijeka and expats in Rijeka who provided visitors with an unparalleled culinary experience on Saturday by giving them the chance to try dishes from 20 world cuisines in one place. At 128 Brigade HV Square, members of the communities of national minorities offered traditional homemade food to their fellow townspeople as thousands of visitors gathered in the centre of Rijeka to savour delectable dishes right down to the last bite.
The folk dance programme culminated in an emotional and massive “oro” dance, during which the Macedonian Cultural Society “Ilinden” led all the members of the communities of national minorities in the dance, with many visitors also joining them. Several hundred children participated in four creative workshops and enjoyed performances by children’s choirs as part of the children’s programme that took place at the Dolac Primary School.
It was a three-day multicultural social gathering that ended on Sunday, 8 September, at the Rijeka Market with visitors young and old enjoying the free circus, gastro and music programme.
One of the most important goals of Rijeka 2020 – European Capital of Culture is the development of inclusivity and the inclusion of all citizens in cultural programmes, especially those from vulnerable social groups whose access to culture and cultural production is often impeded, which is why users of the Rijeka Rehabilitation Centre and the “Vida” Addiction Services Centre were also involved in the festival. Numerous volunteers also put a lot of work and effort into the organisation of the festival.
Porto Etno – World Music and Gastro festival is part of the Kitchen of Diversity flagship of Rijeka 2020 – European Capital of Culture and its programme was once again realised thanks to the joint effort and work of all the members of the communities of national minorities of Rijeka and expats in Rijeka, as well as all the artists and musicians involved in the festival programme. Porto Etno – World Music and Gastro festival, whose backbone is the communities of the national minorities of Rijeka, expats in Rijeka and musical nomads from all around the world is the perfect embodiment of the Port of Diversity slogan used by Rijeka for its prestigious title of the 2020 European Capital of Culture.
Rijeka showed this weekend that it is a multicultural city with a bold and unique cultural programme in which it can take pride in 2020 when it carries the title of European Capital of Culture. The next, fourth edition of Porto Etno – World Music and Gastro Festival has been announced for 2020, when the citizens of Rijeka and its visitors will be able to enjoy even more events.
Photos: Tanja Kanazir & Stephany Stefan