27 - 30 March 2025 Leipzig Book Fair
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10/03/2021 Leipziger Buchmesse

Let's Read!

Leipzig Book Fair Hosts Leipzig liest extra

Personal encounters with authors – even with pandemic regulations. Making literature visible – even with the lack of platforms. Global perspectives – even with limited mobility All this will take place from 27 to 30 May. The Leipzig Book Fair will be holding an event called Leipzig liest extra with book readings throughout the city, awards for outstanding books and international gatherings online. Details of the programme will be available at the beginning of May.

"If there's one thing the industry is in need of at the moment, it's face-to-face interaction," explains Oliver Zille, Director of the Leipzig Book Fair. "After the cancellation of this year's Leipzig Book Fair, we have decided to focus precisely on personal gatherings this year – as far as pandemic events allow, of course. Readers and authors will meet and discuss and inspire each other again. Ideas need to become more visible again. Let's read – that's the credo for our Leipzig liest extra. And I'm really looking forward to this."

At the heart of the Reading Festival's extra edition are around 300 events in and around the city of Leipzig – pandemic conditions permitting. Authors and readers will be able to meet at selected locations, subject to all hygiene regulations, of course. In order to make the readings available to a wider audience, individual events will also be streamed on the Leipzig Book Fair platform – accessible to all interested readers and free of charge.

On two specially created "Leipzig liest" platforms, the public broadcasting programme providers will present the spring's new releases. MDR and ARD, for example, are planning numerous literary experiences in the digital space from 27 to 30 May. Among other things, a reading marathon will start on 29 May from 10 am to 8 pm in the ARD Forum in the Alte Handelsbörse. Every half hour, cultural journalists from all over ARD will present authors and their books. The Blaue Sofa will also be present at Leipzig liest with a special programme. The authors' sofa of Bertelsmann, ZDF, Deutschlandfunk Kultur and 3sat moves from the Glass Hall to a location in the city and presents daily readings and author talks. These will also be streamed and presented on the Leipzig Book Fair platform.

Outstanding Literature: Leipzig Book Fair Prize and Prize for European Understanding

Great books are written even in time of a pandemic. The appreciation of these books must therefore be an integral part of Leipzig liest extra. The Leipzig Book Prize for European Understanding will be awarded to Johny Pitts on the evening of 26 May 2021. The tribute speech will be given by Editor, Publisher and Literary Agent, Elisabeth Ruge. During the ceremony, László Földényi, the 2020 winner, will also be honoured retrospectively due to corona. The Leipzig Book Fair Prize will be awarded this year on Friday, 28 May, at 4 pm. The winners in the categories fiction, non-fiction/essay writing and translation will be honoured at the Kongresshalle am Zoo Leipzig. Both events will also be streamed via the Leipzig liest extra platform.

Other award ceremonies are planned, such as the Lesekompass for children's and young readers' books, the Seraph fantasy prize, the Kurt Wolff Prize for independent publishers, the Prix de lycéens for French youth literature and the Sales Award for outstanding sales performance in the bookselling industry.

International Insights Despite Limited Mobility: Common Ground and Portugal

The yearning for international experiences has never been greater. With international readings and discussions, Leipzig liest extra takes a look at European literature. Literature from Southeast Europe is the focus of Common Ground. This year's focus is "Archipelago Yugoslavia – From 1991 to Today". Digital talks, discussions, book presentations, feature films and documentaries will bring together authors and other stakeholders from the region. The programme will be streamed on the Leipzig liest extra platform. The exact implementation of Portugal's originally planned guest country appearance "Unexpected Encounters", which will focus on the presentation of over 50 new titles, is currently being discussed with the organisers. Information on this will be available soon.

Leipziger Autorenrunde: Digital Exchange on Current Challenges

The corona pandemic has fundamentally changed the way authors work. There is a lack of exchange and direct feedback from the audience. All the more reason for the Leipziger Autorenrunde, a cooperation between the Leipzig Book Fair and publisher and community conceptualiser Leander Wattig, has set itself the goal this year of promoting this exchange even more. After eight years of conventional Leipziger Autorenrunde, this year's event will be held digitally for the first time. On 29 May, industry representatives will be able to meet in the digital space to discuss the current pressing issues.

Bright Spots of Colour: Manga Comic-Con Featuring Community Activities

If the Manga Comic-Con (MCC) community has proven one thing in recent years, it is that it is colourful and diverse, a welcome change in challenging times. As part of Leipzig liest extra, the MCC will present itself with several community activities and MCC Kreativ Digital, an art exhibition on the web. More details will be available in April.

About Leipzig liest extra – an Leipzig Book Fair Event

In 2021, the Leipzig Book Fair had to be cancelled due to the corona pandemic. Nevertheless, in order to bring authors and readers together, the Leipzig Book Fair is organising the Leipzig liest extra this year. There will be around 300 events in the Leipzig area, award ceremonies and digital gatherings. Selected events will also be streamed on the Leipzig Book Fair website and made accessible to a wider audience. #Leipzigliestextra #lbm21


Julia Lücke
Press Spokesperson
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