Belle van Zuylen Lecture: Elena Ferrante
Opening of ILFU 2021 and presentation of Belle van Zuylen Ring
The International Literature Festival Utrecht will kick off with the Belle van Zuylen Lecture by none other than successful Italian author Elena Ferrante, famous for her Neapolitan novels and the TV series ‘My Brilliant Friend’. Her participation in the lecture series, which has included previous lectures by writers such as Margaret Atwood, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Jeanette Winterson, is definitely unique. She never appears in public, and no one is entirely certain who is behind her nom de plume Elena Ferrante. Olga Zuiderhoek will read Ferrante’s lecture on her behalf.
This evening, Ferrante will also receive the Belle van Zuylen Ring, an international honour presented by the ILFU in collaboration with the City of Utrecht. Amsterdam Sinfonietta will provide musical accompaniment.
The lecture honours the memory of 18th-century writer, philosopher and composer Belle van Zuylen. Van Zuylen’s centuries-long reputation as a progressive thinker with a sharp pen for social criticism was recently brought up for reappraisal in the book Slavernij en de stad Utrecht (Slavery and the City of Utrecht). Journalist Simone Weimans will speak with a variety of experts and historians about the new insights and their influence on how we read Van Zuylen’s work.
During the festival, the lecture by Zuiderhoek and versions by renowned actresses in Italian and English will be available for streaming via ilfu.com.
Those in attendance will also receive an exclusive print edition of the lecture in Dutch.
Thursday, 23 September
Tickets 15, – / ILFU members 12,-