Report sought by Monday on problems with the arts festival

When the issue is the shortcomings of the Festival Internacional de las Artes the buck does not stop at the president’s desk.

The president, Luis Guillermo Solís issued a directive, he said Tuesday, for a report from the Ministerio de Cultura y Juventud by next Monday.

Casa Presidencial noted that the festival had been characterized by many canceled or reprogramed activities, low attendance by the public and a series of developments that impeded the development of the event.

The report of the festival is to come from the minister,  Elizabeth Fonseca, the vice ministers Alfredo Chavarría and Luis Carlos Amador as well as the director of the Centro de Producción Artística y Cultural, Inti Picado.

The festival ended Sunday, and one major problem was the rejection by the Contraloría General de la República of a contract for sound and lights. That pretty well doomed concerts and performances outside San José Centro.

But there was another problem. The festival was designed for the first time to bring culture to the people. The events were supposed to take place in four cantons, Desamparados, Aserrí, Acosta and Alajuelita. In past years, the festival was in Parque la Sabana. So the logistics were complex.

Bands were well received when they ended up performing in the Central de la Cultura, the ministry facility on Avenida 7.

Although the audience was thin April 27, by the next day and following evenings the young crowd was noisy and entertained.

Solís promised to make the autopsy report on the festival public. The government and private sources invested about $1.4 million in the festival.

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