The countdown is on for Esch2022: the European Capital of Culture opens in one year from now; this major project marks the starting point for sustainable development of the cross-border region.

For this cultural milestone, Esch-sur-Alzette has joined forces with 10 surrounding municipalities in Luxembourg and also with 8 French border municipalities of the CCPHVA (Communauté de Communes Pays Haut Val d'Alzette). For nearly a year, this region marked by the steel industry will present all the richness of its social and cultural activity through nearly 140 projects.

On Friday, the Esch2022 project team has presented an overview of the programme which takes as its watchword "Remix Culture" and tells the story of a region in central Europe marked by industrial activity, its development and the society that constitutes it. What is in question here is European identity and its ways of thinking.

Remix Culture has four sub-themes: Remix Yourself, Remix Nature, Remix Art and Remix Europe. The programme includes 140 projects carried out by municipalities, institutions, cultural and social establishments, associations and artists. One of the main lines of Esch2022 is the participation of citizens in the organisation of these activities as well as in the sustainable development of their country. Some of the projects, grouped by theme, such as Voices for the Future, Future Europeans, Sustainable Futures and Future Memories, to which are added Performing Futures and Future Formarts, were presented on Friday.

• Voices for the Future give people a voice to make their voices heard.
• Future Europeans encompass projects of a cross-border or international nature.
• Sustainable Futures concerns the sustainable development of the region or the environment.
• Future Memories bridges the gap between the past and the future. It presents projects that, now or in the future, will have a new goal.
• Performing Futures brings together performances and performances.
• Digital projects, including artistic projects, are grouped under the Future Formarts sub-theme. 

“With this very diverse programme, there really is something for everyone,” said Françoise Poos, Director of the cultural programme. "Through Esch2022, we want to tell the story of our region, from the time of the steel industry to the digital age."

Throughout the year, many events will be offered in Esch-sur-Alzette, with well-known partners: the Théâtre d'Esch, the National Museum of the Resistance, the Esch-Belval district, the organisation of the Image Centre and the NEST, Thionville theatre; each of the municipalities will also be in the spotlight for a whole month. 

Immigration and the issue of living together in different cultures are also recurring themes in the programme. 

Cooperation with European cultural establishments, such as Ars Electronica in Linz (Austria), the Centre for Art and Media (Zentrum für Kunst und Medien - ZKM) in Karlsruhe (Germany) and the House of Electronic Arts (Haus der elektronischen Künste - HeK) from Basel (Switzerland) complete the Esch2022 programme, events to be discovered next year at the Möllerei in Esch-Belval. 

The organising team behind Esch2022 comprises around 25 people.