The International Literature Festival Ruse

The International Literature Festival in Ruse has established itself as one of the most famous and renowned events of the Bulgarian cultural scene. Founded in 2008 by the International Elias Canetti Society, the festival presents contemporary elements of international and local culture, literature, art, music, photography, theatre, film, and other alternative forms of artistic expression. Taking place every October in the historic Canetti House as well as various locations throughout Ruse, Veliko Tarnovo and Sofia, the festival offers a broad variety of cultural events featuring artists from Bulgaria, Germany, Romania, France, North Macedonia, Czech Republic, Poland, Great Britain, Austria, Italy, Serbia, Spain, Hungary and many more.

Each year the International Literature festival is united by a theme, addressing historic, contemporary, and future societal topics and issues. Cooperating with countries from all over Europe, the festival uses artistic channels to offer a platform for civic engagement and a forum for public discussion. These forms of cultural expression are complemented by expert discussions and workshops. By combining intersectional forms of presentation with various disciplines, the festival aims to offer innovative and cross-border content. By allowing the audience to gain a glimpse of transnational European artistic developments and perspectives, the festival encourages both participants and attendants to step outside their comfort zones and engage in critical and forward-thinking. The festival’s message, program, and participants are reflective of the IECS’ principles of facilitating and encouraging European values of diversity, tolerance, and equality. 

The festival is organized by the International Elias Canetti Society with the kind support of the Goethe-Institute Sofia. Additional partners and supporters include the Polish Institute in Sofia, the Hungarian Institute in Sofia, Literary Colloquium Berlin e.V. and more.