Thursday, March 28, 2013

Bologna Celebrates 50 Years in Style (and At Length)

By John A. Sellers |Mar 27, 2013 - PW

The winners of the 2013 BolognaRagazzi Awards gathered on stage to accept their prizes on Tuesday night in Bologna.

Co-hosted by Fernando Proce and Jennifer Pressman, the evening included a retrospective slide show of the 50 years of the fair; the awards presentations; speeches from Duccio Campagnoli, chairman of BolognaFiere, and others; a trio of interpretive dances that were physically impressive but otherwise puzzling; and, eventually, the unveiling of a towering celebratory cake that was carted up on stage by four bakers (at least a quarter of the audience left well before the end of the two-hour ceremony).

While the results of the BolognaRagazzi Awards had been previously announced, several winners drew cheers of “Brava!” as they took the stage – appropriately enough, given the opera house setting. But interest was highest in finding out which publishers would take home the BOP prizes, revealed for the first time at the ceremony. The winners were: Bakame Books from Rwanda, Tara Books from India, Cosac Naify from Brazil, Planeta Tangerina from Portugal, Chronicle Books in the U.S., and Gecko Press from New Zealand. In accepting the BOP on behalf of Chronicle, president Jack Jensen quoted former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, saying that “it takes a village to raise a child,” and “it takes Bologna to make great children’s books.”

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