The French Minister of Culture, Rima Abdul-Malak, has awarded director Gábor Tompa, Director of the Hungarian Theatre of Cluj and President of the Union of European Theatres, the distinction of Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters (Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres).
One of France's most important state honours will be presented on 28 March by His Excellency Ambassador Laurence Auer at the French Embassy in Bucharest.
Minister Rima Abdul-Malak said: "I congratulate you on this award, which recognises your commitment to the promotion of French-language culture in your professional activity. Through your perseverance as a director and general manager, you have promoted a theatrical language that is in tune with current French, European and international trends. Under your leadership, the Hungarian Theatre of Cluj has gained a great reputation and has demonstrated its commitment to Franco-Romanian and European theatre cooperation with the Interferences Theatre Festival, which you have created."
The Knighthood of the Order of Arts and Letters is awarded to individuals who have created outstanding artistic works in the field of culture or who have distinguished themselves through their important contribution to art and literature. Created in France in 1957 and recognised by Charles de Gaulle in 1965 as part of the National Order of Merit, the Order of Arts and Letters rewards the most outstanding French cultural figures, but can also be awarded to citizens of other nations for their outstanding contribution to the enrichment of French and universal cultural heritage.
Among the Romanian cultural figures who have previously been awarded the Knighthood of the French Order of Arts and Letters are Silviu Purcărete, Ion Caramitru, George Banu, Maia Morgenstern, Constantin Chiriac, Ilinca Tomoroveanu, Cristian Mungiu, Ioana Celibidache, Gabriela Adameşteanu, Mircea Cărtărescu, Andrei Pippidi, Neagu Djuvara, Gabriel Liiceanu, Ion Marin, and many others.