Segovia Programming Opens International Hay Festival Season: ‘Global Crises’

In News by Porter Anderson

Addressing world political issues through the creative industries’ perspectives, the international series of Hay Festival events has announced that its programming in Spain will feature issues of ‘coexistence, the future of Europe, and debates on gender.’

At Hay Festival Segovia in Convento Santa Maria la Real . Image: Hay Festival, Javier Salcedo

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson
Four Hay Festival Iterations by Year’s End
The Hay Festival’s 2018-2019 international season was released late on Friday (July 13), with news of the Hay Festival Segovia‘s programming going to the media.

The network of international events scheduled comprises:

  • Querétaro, Mexico (September 6 to 9, 2018)
  • Segovia, Spain (September 20 to 23, 2018)
  • Arequipa, Peru (November 8 to 11, 2018)
  • Wales Winter Weekend, UK (November 22 to 25, 2018)
  • Cartagena de Indias, Colombia (January 31, 2018, to February 3, 2019)
  • Main festival, Wales, UK (May 23 to June 2, 2019)

While the programming announcement for Querétaro is expected shortly, the new of Sevogia’s plans is that leading topics of this year’s event will be coexistence, the future of Europe, and debates on gender.

Indeed, Hay Festival is one of 10 European cultural institutions participating in Wom@rts, with an intention of highlighting the contribution of women to cultural heritage and diversity, and to tackling gender inequality by supporting women’s work on the world stage. Between 2018 and 2021, organizers say, a series of festival events will be co-programmed with Wom@rts to interrogate these issues.

Other organizations of the 10 working with Wom@arts–supported by the European Commission through its Creative Europe regime—include the Centre audiovisuel Simone de Beauvoir in France; Ireland’s Limerick Institute of Technology; and the Women in Film and Television program (WIFT) at Finland’s Scandinavian network.

In a prepared statement about this year’s Segovia Hay, the program’s director, María Sheila Cremaschi, is quoted, saying, in part, “In Spain, across Europe, and around the world, global crises demand our attention and action.

“Hay Festival Segovia 2018 offers a moment to reflect on the fundamental questions that lie at the heart of these challenges: how can we coexist with those deemed ‘other,’ what bonds of humanity cross all borders, and how can we build a better world?

“Here, we invite some of the world’s greatest writers, thinkers and performers to imagine the world as it is, and as it might be.”

At Hay Festival Segovia, in Plaza de San Martin. Image: Hay Festival, Javier Salcedo

Programming Notes

Announced for Segovia, an hour from Madrid, here are some of the Hay Festival’s highlights.

Europe’s Future

The political sphere of European issues in separatism vs. coexistence is to be addressed by British historians Antony Beevor, Paul Preston and Simon Schama; London Business School’s Lynda Gratton; British philosopher AC Grayling; photographer and artist Hannah Collins; classicist and journalist Catherine Nixey; and composer and musician William Kingswood.


New developments in the field are scheduled for examination by psychiatrist Luis Rojas Marcos, geneticist Miguel Pita, and CEPYME’s José Manuel de Riva Zorrilla.


Spanish literary personalities scheduled to appear include Planeta Award-winning Javier Sierra as well as Manuel Vilas, Antonio Muñoz Molina, Clara Usón and Luna de Miguel. The festival’s long-running programming around its Bogotá39 anthology of emerging Latin American writers is represented this time by Gonzalo Eltesch (Chile), Mónica Ojeda (Ecuador), and Mariana Torres (Brazil).

Featured international literary speakers are to include the Bitish novelists Ken Follett, Sarah Hall and Julianne Pachico; British-Egyptian poet Sabrina Mahfouz; Belgian poet Charlotte Van den Broeck; British-Spanish poet Ben Clark; Bulgarian poet Georgi Gospodinov; Peruvian screenwriter and novelist Santiago Roncagliolo; Brazilian journalist Alexandre Vidal Porto; and Italian author Antonella Lattanzi.


An exploration of Europe’s cinematic traditions will feature actress Vanessa Redgrave with her 2017 documentary Sea Sorrow; filmmaker Isabel Coixet presenting The Bookshop; and Spain’s leading film critic Carlos Boyero. Twenty screenings on the theme of coexistence will run throughout the week, including the Stephen Frears  collaboration with Hanif Kureishi, My Beautiful Laundrette (1985).


Some of the world’s best known architects will talk about the discipline and their work. They include Japan’s Prizker Prize-winners Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa; director of the Pritzker Prizes Martha Thorne; director of the Museum of Fine Arts of Budapest Laszló Baán; Sweden’s Lars Lerup; Spain’s Ricardo Devesa; and Italy’s editorial director of DOMUS, Walter Mariott.


Art and architecture are the subjects of 12 public exhibitions scheduled to be seen temporarily in various iconic city buildings in Segovia, with by guided tours by artists and curators. Highlights are to include work by Spanish artist Eduardo Arroyo and British artist Kate Daudy.

This year, as Publishing Perspectives has reported, the festival’s international fellowship winner is editor and educator Dylan Moore of The Welsh Agenda. He’s expected to look at issues around displacement as part of his year of work in the fellowship, and his travel essays collection, Driving Home Both Ways, is to be released by Parthian on August 25.

Part of the Hay offering overall is a subscription to some of its festivals’ sessions on the Hay Player for €10 (US$11.69) anually.

Programming and ticketing information for the Segovia Hay is here.

At Hay Festival Segovia, Alhondiga Exposicion. Image: Hay Festival, Javier Salcedo

More from Publishing Perspectives on the Hay Festival and its events is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson was for more than a decade a senior producer and anchor with, CNN International, and CNN USA. As an arts critic (Fellow, National Critics Institute), he was with The Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and the Tampa Tribune, now the Tampa Bay Times. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman.