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News

Opinion Festival Comes to Tartu

DD Sihtasutuse pressiteade

Arvamusfestival Photo: Ele Loonde

26 October / On May 17th and 18th, 2024, Tartu will host the [pre]opinion Festival as a precursor to the Paide Opinion Festival. The festival offers, on one hand, the familiar experience of discussions known in Paide and the festival environment. At the same time, it brings innovations because, for the first time, you can engage in conversations with all of Europe in the cultural capital.

First Time in Tartu 

The festival, taking place in Tartu's City Center Park, will seek solutions to the burning cultural, social, and ecological challenges of Tartu, South Estonia, and Europe. The [pre]opinion Festival is inspired by the lively atmosphere of the Paide Opinion Festival, where exciting discussions, inspiring encounters, and quality time are abundantly available. Guests of all ages from Tartu and beyond are welcome to enjoy interesting debates and participate alongside opinion leaders, experts, and leaders.

[Pre-]Opinion festivals have been held in various places throughout Estonia for years, from Narva to Southeast Estonia, and from Viljandi to Hiiumaa, but this format is happening in Tartu for the first time. [Pre-]Opinion festivals have been initiated to spread good debate practices throughout Estonia and to provide a neutral platform for coming together and discussing local important issues.

Pan-European Festival Area Connects Tartu with Europe

What makes the event special is its unique hybrid format, which allows Tartu residents to engage in discussions with opinion leaders from all over Europe. At the heart of the festival is the area of the Pan-European Opinion Festival Hybrid European Democracy Festival. International opinion festival discussion areas are spread across various university cities in Europe and are connected through digital broadcasts.

Decisions made in Europe increasingly affect us, but opportunities to discuss with other Europeans are lacking. The festival allows Europeans to come together in hybrid discussion spaces and create an environment where participants can share their experiences and local issues that participants from other countries can relate to. Each discussion focuses on shared and vital challenges, for which both participants and listeners can share various solutions used in their home countries.

The Festival Is Born in Cooperation with the People of Tartu 

Anyone who cares about the region's well-being can participate in creating the Tartu [pre-]Opinion Festival program. In January 2024, an idea collection for the festival will take place, open to all organizations, businesses, communities, and other groups. The festival program will be selected based on the submissions to the idea collection and the good practice of the Opinion Festival. The details of the idea collection will be announced in December.

In addition to the discussions, you can also enjoy an extensive cultural program offered by other cultural capital projects and the Tartu University Alumni Day program. 

The Tartu [pre]opinion Festival and Hybrid European Democracy Festival are part of the main program of the European Cultural Capital Tartu 2024. The festival is organized in cooperation with the Opinion Festival.

Last changed 26.10.2023