On November 22nd and 23rd, the University of Warsaw will host a second International Congress to specify objectives and tasks as it establishes a new Minority Language Department. The name of the Congress will be Setting a new rhythm: contemporary popular music in the culture of the co-official languages of the Iberian Peninsula (20th-21st centuries). The event will feature conferences and concerts, and Asier Serrano, Basque writer and former member of the now defunct band EH Sukarra, will be invited.
The Congress will explore the influences and relationships between literature, music and other 20th- and 21st-century art forms in the co-official languages of the Iberian Peninsula (Basque, Galician, Catalan and Mirandese, among others). The speakers and presentations will examine the ties between musicians, writers and artists in the 1970s and 80s, since many of the song lyrics were inspired – and in some cases, written – by poets. In the case of the Basque Country, several presentations will focus on the so-called Rock Radikal Vasco (Radical Basque Rock) movement and the influence it had on the social turmoil of the era, especially among the youth. Some musicians from that period later turned to literature. The Congress will also examine the influence of Radical Basque Rock in today’s literature. Collaboration between writers and musicians in the Basque Country is still seen today, for example singer Mikel Urdangarin and writer Kirmen Uribe, or writer Harkaitz Cano and the band Lou Topet.
Among other artists, writer and musician Asier Serrano – who recently won the Euskadi Literature Award for his collection of poems Linbotarrak – has been invited. He will give a concert along with Catalan singer Xavi Sarria, from the band Obrint Pas, and Galician singer Maria Xosé Silvar Sés, on November 22nd at 8 p.m. Serrano will also participate in a roundtable and will give a presentation titled Isiltasunaren arkitektura: Literaturatik musikara (The architecture of silence: from literature to music) on November 23rd.
Basque culture will also be the subject of presentations by other artists, including Gurutze Lasa, Jon Martin Etxebeste, Agnes Tida and Magda Gajewska. Aitor Arruza, Reader of Basque Language and Culture of the University of Warsaw, is one of the event organizers, along with representatives of the other regional co-official languages and the University management.