Transylvania Open Forum: Culture and Development

11th October 2010

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TRANSYLVANIA OPEN FORUM: Culture and Development

Thursday 28 October 2010, 6.30pm, at The Embassy of Romania, Washington DC (1607 23rd Street, NW, Washington, DC 20008) Entrance is free, but RSVP is mandatory at . Transylvania Open Forum: Culture and Development proposes a discussion on culture and sustainable development in the Saxon villages of South-Eastern Transylvania, with Caroline Fernolend, Vice-President of the Mihai Eminescu Trust (MET) and Professor Eliot Sorel MD, senior adviser to the exhibition Transylvania – Heritage and Future. “Culture is one of the most illustrative, convincing and essential ambassadors of Romania as it is of any country. Romanian Culture is still a ‘well kept secret’ in Europe and the world. We must reveal this ’well kept secret’ and unleash its intrinsic value, its healing and catalytic value added in international, interethnic relations as well as sustainable development.” - Professor Eliot Sorel MD The Forum will concentrate on the original area inhabited by the Saxons, in the present-day counties of Brasov, Mures and Sibiu. The speakers will present the area’s natural beauty and talk about opportunities for business development which can be born from this natural wealth, the careful management of the resources that does not affect the beauty of the place, and the cooperation with the entrepreneurial people inhabiting the area. The Forum will also emphasise the benefits coming from sustainable development, which are already being felt in some of the Saxon villages of South-Eastern Transylvania. Investment in the local economy and the cultivation of traditional skills and crafts has lead to progress in the overall quality of life of the locals, creating an infrastructure upon which further, even more successful, investment can be made. The counties of Brasov, Mures and Sibiu, the old lands of the Transylvanian Saxons, are now witnessing a rebirth as unique destinations for art lovers and eco-tourists. However, this phenomenon is yet to reach its full potential. The public will be briefed by Caroline Fernolend and by Professor Eliot Sorel MD on the restoration and regeneration work of the MET, the speakers presenting directions and ideas for the future. The audience will receive information on how to visit the places presented in the exhibition, and how to experience the real Transylvania. There will also be information on how to get involved in the work of the MET and its projects. A special Q&A session will follow, where all observations, comments and questions are welcome. • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • This program is part of the exhibition Transylvania – Heritage and Future (14-31 October 2010, The Embassy of Romania to the United States, 1607 23rd Street, NW, Washington, DC 20008). Guided tours at 1pm and 4pm. FREE ADMISSION to exhibition, guided tours and all events. Transylvania – Heritage and Future is centred on the Saxon villages of South-Eastern Transylvania, known in German as the Siebenburgen, and their recent rebirth as self-sustaining rural communities. As a sign of his support for the MET’s work and for this project in particular, HRH The Prince of Wales has agreed to record a message which was played at the opening of the exhibition. You can see it here or via YouTube at . RSVPs and further information: Contact person: Ramona Mitrica, . For full program and updates, please check “Transylvania – Heritage and Future” is organised by The Mihai Eminescu Trust, The Embassy of Romania in Washington, The Romanian Cultural Institute in New York, and The Romanian Ministry of Regional Development and Tourism, with the support of the Ratiu Foundation.

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