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The festival

For the fourth time now, nearly 170 free outdoor and indoor programs, amazing mappings, light installations, street-art productions and concerts await visitors at Zsolnay Light Festival, Hungary's premier light-art attraction! The event, attracting more than 70,000 visitors last year, is held at June 27-30 this year to offer unforgettable days in downtown Pécs for those who want special light experiences.

Zsolnay Light Festival is the first and only festival of light in the country. At the event, considered unique in Central Europe, after nightfall, the spatial-specific works of light-art of domestic and foreign artists amazes visitors in the cosy streets, squares, inner gardens and church facades of Pécs. Familiar nooks, ancient and modern buildings, green parks and foliage are dressed up in casual light costumes woven of millions of pixels.

The most anticipated program of the festival is the internationally acclaimed three-dimensional Zsolnay Light Art Mapping Competition. In this context, the moving 3D light works made for the theme Clear Light will bring to life the monumental walls of the Cathedral. This year, the competitors has come from different parts of the world again, including China, France, Mexico and Spain, and 10 of them can compete for the grand prize. In addition, the winner can take part in the World Champions League, the iMapp Bucharest Mapping Competition.

In addition to the competition works, one more attraction comes to life on the cathedral as a specialty: Zsolt László Bordos is a world-renowned light artist, creating a unique light work complete with robotic lights that has not yet been seen in Hungary.

In the evening, The Route of Light – A downtown light boulevard with 25 stations, expanding with new locations, turns the city centre of Pécs into a dazzling wonder world. The visitors can come across works of light installations based on both analogue and digital techniques, as well as static and interactively controlled installations. You can admire the light flowers opening on the tree trunks, stroll through the glittering surfaces created by the most modern techniques, or the magic Light Carpet projected onto Janus Pannonius Street.

The walls of the Barbican will come to life, and with the help of kinetic structures the buildings of the Theatre Square are going to be animated, and a five-meter bright-shining bear cub will appear in addition to the festival's totem animal, the Pixel beetle, which will be revived by the fountain of St. Stephen’s Square.

The Bauhaus, the most influential art school of the 20th century, opened its gates one hundred years this year, and many works reflect this jubilee.

In addition to domestic creators, the works of Finnish, Spanish, Brazilian and Mexican artists make the Path of Light international.

 The peculiarity of the Light Festival of in Pécs is that it offers entertainment not only after twilight, , but it also awaits visitors with numerous events during the day. The street-theatre program, will include performances by artists from Costa Rica, Germany, France, Spain, the Netherlands, Italy and Argentina. For the third time, the festival hosts the Hungarian Juggling Convention, where besides the professional programs the juggling school offers visitors an insight into the mysteries of juggling.

The festival's musical program focuses on Theatre Square this year. There will be two different characters of the venue: daytime concerts are waiting for the audience with colourful world music, while in the evening, after The Route of Light is switched on, special musical productions are expected to be created by fusion of electronic and acoustic instruments. The outstanding performers of the daytime music programs include the Hungarian blues phenomenon Little G Weevil, the Argentine Aguamadera and the Italian Vagatrio, while the musical delicacies of the night program include the performance of the Japanese Kenta Hayashi, a returning concert by Brooklyn Gypsy's, the domestic Iamyank or the concert by Óperentzia.

Special features of the festival include daytime light programs, where the nature of the light can be studied by those interested, and the most active ones can make light-emitting decorations in the Light-workshop this year as well.

The festival will also feature new program elements such as thematic screenings and live acts: the AV Composers evening will feature real-time "image-music composing", i.e. live audio-visual productions in the Apollo Cinema.

One of the most interesting extraordinary new venues is the ÁRKÁD Pécs Shopping Centre, where you can admire a daylight and a night light-artwork.

Visitors to the Pécs Gallery can also see a real curiosity: The exhibition of Sándor Vály, a Hungarian artist and media artist living in Finland. The installation Gothic Holograms made for the Pécs Gallery on the occasion of the Light Festival is a special game with space and time. Vály left Hungary thirty years ago, and since then, it will be the first time, he has an exhibition in Hungary. The exhibition opens as a "prologue" of the Light Festival on June 22 and can be visited for a month.

- In the wake of the international success, we decided to invite “light ambassadors” to the festival from a certain country every year, first from Finland, said Balázs Vincze, Managing Director of the festival organiser Zsolnay Heritage Management Non-profit Ltd. Managing Director. Under this new feature, in cooperation with FinnAgora, the Finnish Cultural, Scientific and Economic Institute in Hungary, the light ambassadors from Helsinki will present to the light symbolism reflecting the Nordic way of thinking through Finnish Focus program .

At the free festival, those who wants more experience, The Route of Light feature exclusive locations and special programs that can be visited by purchasing a festival wristband.