The decision has been made. Chemnitz’s bid for the title of European Capital of Culture 2025 has made it onto the shortlist.

Mayor Barbara Ludwig said, “People of Chemnitz, this is a huge opportunity for our city: we could become European Capital of Culture in 2025. Today we are another step closer to achieving our goal.

The European jury has recognised our city’s potential and wants to see more from us. We have been invited to submit a second comprehensive bid book by June 2020, including fully developed projects and a detailed programme for 2025; an invitation to Europe that is so convincing it cannot be refused.

So let us work together to turn our delight at the jury’s initial verdict into energy and allow this momentum to carry us through the next stages of the process. If we are to become European Capital of Culture 2025, we need to put the city of Chemnitz on the global map, as a modern city with a great industrial heritage and culture, that provides space for creative minds and artistic opportunities for future generations, and has ideas for bringing together the diverse strands of our urban society with the exciting culture of our region. And this also means intensifying the drive to develop our city as one that works for everyone.

I therefore want to encourage you all to get involved. Comparing ourselves with Saxony’s other large cities will not get us anywhere. Our sights should now be set on the cities of Marseilles, Plovdiv, Pilsen, Galway, Aarhus, Liverpool, Linz, Wroclaw and other past winners. Because Chemnitz has what it takes to be a European city and we will keep working tirelessly to make it happen.

Now that this first obstacle has been successfully overcome, I want to express my thanks! Thanks to all the pioneers, the movers and shakers, the doers and the campaigners. Thanks to all those people who have lived and breathed this bid with boundless dedication in the steadfast belief that Chemnitz can become European Capital of Culture 2025.

If we all commit to thinking big and tackling the seemingly impossible, then Chemnitz will have the opportunity to be a winner on many different levels.”

(Photo: Kristin Schmidt | Video: Ernesto Uhlmann, Peter Roßner)