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The Birmingham Book Festival and the Library of Birmingham announce new partnership from 2013

The Birmingham Book Festival and Birmingham City Council, are pleased to announce a new partnership between the festival and the Library of Birmingham from 2013.

From 2013, the festival, currently in its 13th year, will be based at the library, holding events, workshops, performances and talks in the new £188.8 million building.

Sara Beadle, Festivals Director for Writing West Midlands, who run the festival, said, “Becoming part of the new library in the year that it opens is really exciting for us. We currently have an excellent working relationship with Birmingham’s Library and Archive Services and the opportunity to be part of the amazing new building in 2013 will only strengthen that. The building itself will be perfect for the eclectic mix of events we hold and the new performance spaces and public areas will give us real scope to grow and be creative.”

Mike Whitby, Leader of Birmingham City Council said: “We are thrilled to be hosting the Birmingham Book Festival in the Library of Birmingham from 2013. The new library with its world-class resources will be the perfect venue. This is a powerful example of the type of partnership we are developing with other organisations, working closely with local communities and being the base for many of the city’s most exciting projects and events.”

Birmingham Library and Archive Services already collaborates with the Book Festival, presenting a series of events at Birmingham Central Library. This year, the fringe events will include the opportunity for new writers including Edmund Bealby-Wright, Linda Green and Sonia Faleiro to speak about their work, and Moving Books, in which members of the public will give their views on which books should be moved to the new Library of Birmingham. Brian Gambles, Director of the Library of Birmingham project, will also speak at the States of Independence event on 8 October, about how the new library will engage with the region’s writers.

This year’s festival (6 -16 October 2011) will see Will Self, Tony Harrison, Stuart Maconie, Jenn Ashworth, Alan Hollinghurst and Ian Rankin among the international writers, poets and artists coming to the city.

Other events will include an innovative, international ‘dice slam’, in which eight poets from across the world will battle it out for votes (Thursday 13 October –7pm); a reading by Cuban poet Victor Rodriguez Nunez (12 October -7.30pm); a whole day of festival events at the MAC (Sunday 16 October) which will include a screening of a Cannes Film festival winning film, Life Above All, from the novel by Allan Stratton, and a poetry party and open mic with Dutch slam legends Daan Doesborgh and Ellen Deckwitz.

The festival will also announce the sixteenth Birmingham Poet Laureate, have a dedicated bookshop within Birmingham Central Library and a specially commissioned sound installation, Boy You Turn Me, situated in an empty shop in The Pavilions shopping centre.