Katowice named Creative City of Music together with Kingston, Liverpool and others

Katowice has been declared a City of Music by UNESCO. Now the city is among 19 global destinations appreciated for its music heritage forming part of the prestigious UNESCO Creative Cities Network. Apart from Katowice, nine other cities have also been given the title today – including Kingston in Jamaica, Salvador in Brazil and Liverpool in the UK.

© City of Gardens; music concert at the top of the former Warszawa mine shaft (part of Silesian Museum)
© City of Gardens; music concert at the top of the former Warszawa mine shaft (part of Silesian Museum)

On Friday, Irina Bokova, UNESCO general director, announced the designation of 47 cities from 33 countries as new members of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network within seven creative fields (Crafts and Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Media Arts and Music). Katowice and other nine cities from around the globe were awarded the City of Music status. Katowice is the first city in the Central and Eastern Europe, which has been named this title and the second creative city in Poland (Kraków was named the Creative City of Literature in 2013).

„We have been convinced for a very long time that Katowice is the city of music. The title awarded by UNESCO is the best prove we have been right. It also proved that the city strategy based on culture investments brings effects” – commented Marcin Krupa, Katowice mayor.

The City of Music status has been awarded to Katowice due to intensity and diversity of music in Katowice – classical music, contribution to development of jazz and blues, and commitment to have great alternative and electronic festivals: OFF Festival and Tauron Nowa Muzyka. The city also owes the title to great Katowice composers: Henryk Mikołaj Górecki and Wojciech Kilar as well as to investment undertakings, for example the new seat of the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra.

According to UNESCO, by joining the network, cities commit to collaborate and develop partnerships with a view to promoting creativity and cultural industries, to share best practices, to strengthen participation in cultural life, and to integrate culture in economic and social development strategies and plans. The award also gives opportunities to expand city’s music heritage and brings more tourists.

Launched in 2004, the Network now comprises 116 cities worldwide. It aims to foster international cooperation with and between cities committed to investing in creativity as a driver for sustainable urban development, social inclusion and cultural vibrancy.

„The UNESCO Creative Cities Network represents an immense potential to assert the role of culture as enabler of sustainable development. I would like to recognize the many new cities and their countries that are enriching the network with their diversity” – declared Irina Bokova, general director of UNESCO.

Learn more about Katowice – Creative City of Music at katowicecityofmusic.eu (English version)

Cities which have been given UNESCO City of Music status on Friday, 11th of December 2015 are:

Adelaide, Australia

Idanha-a-Nova, Portugal

Katowice, Poland

Kingston, Jamaica

Kinshasa, the Republic of Congo

Liverpool, the United Kingdom

Medellín, Colombia

Salvador, Brazil

Tongyeong, the Republic of Korea

Varanasi, India

Cities which have already been awarded the title in the previous years:

Bogota, Columbia (2012)

Bologna, Italy (2006)

Brazzaville, the Republic of Congo (2013)

Ghent, Belgium (2009)

Glasgow, the United Kingdom (2008)

Hamamatsu, Japan (2014)

Hanover, Germany (2014)

Mannheim, Germany (2014)

Seville, Spain (2006)