Message from Heiko Maas, Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs,
for the project Krzyżowa-Music: Music for Europe
Krzyżowa is a very important place in German history and in particular in German-Polish relations. One reminder of this is the thirtieth anniversary of the reconciliation Mass in Krzyżowa, where then Polish Prime Minister Tadeusz Mazowiecki and then Federal Chancellor Helmut Kohl met on 12 November 1989, just a few days after the fall of the Berlin Wall. This site of German resistance against Nazi tyranny has become a symbol of the reconciliation between Germans and Poles and a cultural centre and meeting place for German, Polish and European youth.
The festival, Krzyżowa-Music: Music for Europe, can look back on five successful seasons, and is thus also celebrating an anniversary of its own. In this time, it has established itself both in the German-Polish cultural calendar and internationally as an event of particular artistic and symbolic importance. I am especially pleased that the festival is mainly being funded by donations and sponsorship once again this year. That shows that the message of reconciliation emanating from Krzyżowa is being heard and enjoys the support of civil society.
Above all, Krzyżowa-Music is a European project. At this time of great global change, we continue to face significant challenges in Europe that we will only be able to overcome by working together in order to shape our future. The chamber music festival in Krzyżowa fosters European solidarity. It brings together artists from 20 countries all over Europe and beyond and provides a successful venue for in-depth cultural exchange and joint artistic creativity across national borders. At the same time, it supports the work of the International Youth Meeting Centre, which enables many young people from across Europe to share valuable experiences in Krzyżowa every year.
2019 is a year in which we are commemorating historic events that determined our common history. This year’s festival will conclude with a memorial concert on 1 September, the eightieth anniversary of the outbreak of the Second World War.
I was thus happy this year in particular to join my Polish counterpart Jacek Czaputowicz as patron of this project, which unites people across borders.
I would like to thank the organisers and artists for their hard work and great dedication and to wish Krzyżowa-Music another successful season this year.