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Torre des Pi des Català restoration nabs European Award for Architectural Heritage Intervention's special mention

Torre des pi des catala retalladaLocal architect Marià Castelló's project to restore Es Pi des Català defence tower, an initiative that moved forward thanks to backing from the Formentera Council, garnered the European Award for Architectural Heritage Intervention's special mention. A distinction given by the Col·legi Oficial d'Arquitectes de Catalunya (COAC), the Agrupació d'Arquitectes per la Defensa i la Intervenció del Patrimoni Arquitectònic (AADIPA) and the Generalitat de Catalunya, Catalunya's regional government, the honour was bestowed in a ceremony that took place yesterday afternoon at the COAC's head office. A panel of jurors credited Castelló with “precision, simplicity and effectiveness” in his delivery of the remodel.

CiF president Jaume Ferrer and patrimony councillor Susana Labrador congratulated Castelló on the honour. According to Labrador, praise for the project's respectful treatment of the Es Pi des Català heritage site was “particularly exciting since the Council's goal, from the start, was to preserve the tower as an essential feature of local heritage and make sure everyone who wanted to could enjoy it”.

First prize went to another project dealing with man-made buildings as patrimony: the conversion of Convento das Bernardas, in Tavira (Portugal), by architect Eduardo Souto de Moura. One of the world's leading lights in terms of architecture, Souto de Moura received the Pritzker prize (architecture's equivalent of the Nobel) in 2011.

On completion in 2016, Es Pi des Català tower became Formentera's first defence tower equipped to receive visits. It is open on Saturdays 10.00am to 1.00pm.

Balearic symphonic orchestra, Maria del Mar Bonet put in at Formentera

Maria del mar bonetThe Formentera Council's Office of Culture has reported that at 9.30pm on June 16, the Orquestra Simfònica de les Illes Balears will stage a special concert in Es Pujols' plaça d'Europa. Not only is the Orquestra expected to interpret a diverse repertoire, but also, during their performance they will be joined by singer Maria del Mar Bonet. The Council has made every effort to insure the evening's success, said culture councillor Susana Labrador, quipping that the administration's backing, both material or personal, was “all part of making sure the concert is a smash”. She also tipped her hat to the Govern balear's ministry of culture for bringing the orchestra to each of the Balearic Islands, in general, and to Formentera, in particular.

Devoted to reaching every strata of society in the region they represent, the Orquestra Simfònica de les Illes Balears are conscious of the role music plays in shaping—and linking—communities. The day before, the Orquestra will hold a concert in Eivissa's Reina Sofia park.

The concert bill includes three overtures—to Mozart's Les Noces de Fígaro, Verdi's la Força del Destí and Bizet's Carmen—and the intermezzo to Luis Alonso's Les Noces. A distinguished artist and composer in the region, del Mar Bonet will punctuate the Orquestra's performances with her own interventions. The concert marks the artist's fiftieth year as a singer.

School of music and dance hosts year-end festival

The Formentera Council's centre for music and dance will hold its eighteenth “Festival de música i dansa” this Saturday, June 10. At 8.30pm in the municipal cinema, 130 students of dance, instruments, traditional music, band and polyphonic choir will offer audiences a taste of their work in 2016-2017.

Squares across Formentera welcome back summer music programme

Musica jorge fernandezIn an announcement today, the Formentera Council's Offices of Culture and Local Holidays unveiled the 2017 programme for Música a les Places (Music in the Squares), a yearly concert series synonymous with the return of summer and swelling temperatures. Fashioned for tourists and residents alike, the season-long do aims to energise Formentera's cultural catalogue and boost community use of public spaces. “This is a concert series with a long history on the island,” quipped Susana Labrador, head of Formentera's Office of Culture.

Es Pujols's premier square, plaça d'Europa, will get a dose of world music every Thursday with performances from Antena Libre at 11.00pm in July and August (shows in June and September start an hour earlier). On Tuesdays at 10.00pm, La 22 will serve up an ample helping of latin fusion. Then, on Fridays at 10.00pm at Sant Ferran's prime gathering spot, plaça de l'esglesia, watch out for Música en viu (literally, “live music”). Saturday nights are for jazz, when Formentera's most charming jazz outfit will be called upon to supply the tunes from 10.00pm. According to Labrador, it is Música a les Places's programme (“chock full of celebrated artists from Spain and further afield”) that explains the event's steadily-growing crowds of faithfuls.

Collaborative efforts
Fuelled from the start by support from Antena Libre and the association Jazz & Co, Música a les Places is, at its core, about conserving and fomenting music of all kinds, including live improv performances.

This year's bill is, once again, sponsored by Estrella Galicia. A driving force of music in Spain, the company is right at home backing Música a les Places, an event that spotlights an array of musical styles in one of a kind settings. With a self-proclaimed affinity for independent, alternative festivals, every year Estrella Galicia hosts 150 concerts in venues across Spain. That dedication to music was behind the company's founding of SON Records, a label that has made a name for itself producing indie acts from around the country. The Formentera Council wishes to thank Estrella Galicia for its long-standing commitment to music and culture in our country.

Sneak peek at Formentera Film Festival

Foto presentacio for film 2017This morning, in the courtyard of Centre “Gabrielet,” the island got a first look at Formentera Film 2017. At a morning presentation of the event, councillors of culture and tourism Susana Labrador and Alejandra Ferrer were joined by the festival's two coordinators, Monica Timperi and Silvio Bandinelli. Now in its fifth year, the showcase of short films, documentaries and video art runs May 18 to 21.

Screenings for Formentera Film are free and begin Thursday, May 18 at 8.30pm in la Mola's central plaza. They pick up the same time next day in Sant Francesc's plaça de la Constitució, which will be their home for the remainder of the festival. Thursday's focus on documentaries will give way Friday and Saturday to a selection encompassing short works of fiction and animation and video art. Twenty-three shorts—of which three were produced in the Balearics—have been entered to compete in this year's contest. The nightly programme kicks off at 8.30pm with performances from a musical duo from Lisbon's Port do Sol. Presenting duties will be covered by Toni Riera and Viviana Carlet.

On Sunday, May 21, in addition to the day's screenings, audiences—an assortment including directors, producers, distributors and festival organisers—will see the crowning of 2017's selected productions. Winners will receive prizes crafted by local artists Enric Majoral, Lorenzo Pepe, Sol Courrèges Boné and Andrés Rodríguez. Also on Sunday, from 10.30pm, spectators will be treated to a premiere of a short film cut over four days by Zero Video.

Youth involvement
On May 19 and 20, Centre “Gabrielet” plays host to a parallel programme of 18 shorts for children. This year, following a workshop on video production, 12 teens from the island's youth centre put together a music video spotlighting local rapper El Puerta. Students at la Mola's primary school congregated for their own workshop, ultimately churning out the video that will open each day's programme. The workshops were headed up by Arturo Bandinelli and CHD Animation, respectively.

The Formentera Film jury, a panel formed by Véronique Landy, chair of the island's summer film series Cinema a la Fresca, Xavi Herrero, head of Eivissa Cinema Fest and Antonio Delgado, coordinator of Madrid's Centro Cultural Pilar Miró, also includes the filmmaker behind last year's award-winning “A lo oscuro más seguro,” David Pantalons.

Throughout the festival, Sant Francesc's main square will be arrayed with works concocted by Atelier frase, a London-based design firm that specialises in one of a kind, site-specific structures. The company's Formentera installation draws inspiration from coastal landscapes and includes a collection of sculptures fashioned from recycled wood.

Save Posidonia Project
Formentera Film Festival is a part of Save Posidonia Project. Among this year's selected productions is an educational film about the outreach initiative aimed at securing sponsors of portions of local posidonia meadows.

The Formentera Council and the island's tourism advisory board work in tandem with the non-profit group FormenteraArt, a band formed by Bandinelli, Timperi, Carlet and Carlo Migotto which is dedicated to steering the organisation of Formentera Film Festival and conjuring human and professional experiences that support the local community. This year's festival received counsel from Balears Film Commission. Full details can be found at http://www.formenterafilm.com/cat/.

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