An estimated two hundred people gathered at Färgfabriken to see the The Utopian World Championship Gala 2005 on April 2, at which the champion would be crowned. This is a short report from that night.
The program started with presentations of the organisers and the Utopian World Championship. Annika Drougge and Anna-Lena Lundmark presented the SOC.Stockholm artist group that arranges the championship and Annika Drougge and Jon Brunberg held a short presentation of the project in their roles as project managers. Jon Brunberg and Tobias Sjödin were masters of ceremonies.
We invited speakers and artists to appear at the gala, representing different point of views and expression. Johan Norberg spoke about the dark sides of the classical utopias but concluded that we do need visions. Petra Hall spoke about different ways of approaching utopia and Sofia Wiberg presented two projects of utopian dimensions produced by Färgfabriken.
The excellent DJ-duo Matti and Fredrik delivered a unpredictable music mix and the most charming artist and musician Sara Lunden played two of her songs. The artist group Love and Devotion made an installation about SOC and Måns Mullner aka Dr. Mexico made a ritual performance after the gala.
The highlights were of course the prize ceremonies that were held late in the gala. First we invited jurors Anthony Troy Fiscella and Mats Frick onto the stage and made a short interview with them which eventually led to the first ceremony for the second prize. This was given to Per Norbäck for his essay "Demoex - Think Global, Act Local". Norbäck received the utopian classic "The Principle of Hope" by Ernst Bloch.
The grand finale of the gala was the prize ceremony for the champion. The name of the champion was announced - Mr Cyril Belshaw from Vancouver, Canada who had travelled to Sweden to receive his prize. We read the jury's motivation and Mr. Belshaw held a short and heart-warming speech before we concluded the gala and finished with a musical cascade with all participants on stage. For us, who have spent the last three years with the competition in all its phases it was a truly remarkable event. We are specially grateful to the Candian Embassy in Stockholm for their support to Mr Belshaw which enabled his travel to Stockholm.
A huge thanks also to the staff at Färgfabriken and the participants
for your engagement and skill and to all of you visitors to the
gala who with your enthusiasm made the gala an intense and intimate