On 5 September, the opening ceremony of this year's "Latin American and Caribbean Fall" Festival took place in the Hamburg Senate, with the lively participation of Latin American and Caribbean consulates and embassies as well as civil society associations.
On this occasion, Hamburg's Senator for the Interior and Sports, Andy Grote, opened the festival with a greeting in front of some 70 guests in the Kaisersaal of the Senate. Senator Grote welcomed the lively participation of the Latin American and Caribbean diaspora in the cultural life and the active commitment to protect their mother tongues in the Hanseatic city. He also highlighted the positive results of the recent trip to Latin America by the First Mayor and President of the Senate of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, Dr Peter Tschentscher. During his stay in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay, the Mayor and the business delegation accompanying him were able to strengthen the partnerships between Hamburg and the three countries in the field of energy and hydrogen cooperation.
Dr Adrián Bonilla, Executive Director of the EU-LAC Foundation, then spoke:
“This year, we are hosting 85 activities, which brings us back to pre-pandemic levels. And, significantly, we have achieved a record of 58 different institutions representing 19 countries organising events between today and the middle of November. These figures prove the dynamism and contribution of Latin American and Caribbean diasporas and institutions to the progress and cultural life of the Hanseatic and Free City of Hamburg and ensure the future of this festival in the city's cultural life.”
Following this, Ana Angélica Peña Doig, Consul General of the Republic of Peru in Hamburg and coordinator of the Group of Ibero-American and Caribbean Consulates, underlined the relevance of the "Latin American and Caribbean Fall" Festival for the countries of the region and the Hanseatic City. She also emphasised the desire of the consular body to further strengthen the festival and its cultural events in the future.
Finally, the Honorary Consul of Brazil, Dr Jan Curschmann, gave introductory remarks on the documentary film about the life of Aracy Moebius de Carvalho Guimarães Rosa, a Brazilian diplomat during the Second World War, the trailer of which was subsequently shown to the guests.
The opening ceremony was accompanied musically by three young talents from the youth orchestra of the Cuban Institute of Music Amadeo Roldán in Havana, Cuba.
From September to November, the "Latin American and Caribbean Autumn" will be held for the ninth time in the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg under the motto "Speaking languages - communicating cultures". The cultural event was initiated in 2014 by the Senate of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg in cooperation with the embassies and consulates of Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) to increase the visibility of Latin American and Caribbean cultures in Hamburg and to strengthen the interaction between people from LAC and Germany. The international organisation EU-LAC Foundation has been coordinating the events since 2017.
This year, people from Hamburger can look forward to a diverse program with more than 70 literary, gastronomic, musical and academic events that encourage them to get to know the languages and cultural expressions of Latin America and the Caribbean. After two years of almost exclusively virtual events, the program of this ninth edition enjoys predominantly face-to-face formats that once again allow for personal exchange and direct communication between all participants. In addition, this year's festival features two new initiatives in particular: the Ibero-American and Caribbean Film Week and the Culinary EU-LAC Route, which will take place for the first time.
The full program of the Latin America and Caribbean Fall Festival, which will take place from 5 September to 11 November 2022, is available on the EU-LAC Foundation website.