The Line-Up for Leuven 2017

Posted on 18 July 2017

A Twitter account may win you the Presidency of the United States, but in European democracies traditional speechmaking is still a vital skill.

Amidst the social and political upheaval, speechwriters from around the world will gather this autumn near Brussels in Belgium to share their expertise and calm their fractious nerves.

The 15th European Speechwriter Network Conference will take place at the Leuven Institute for Ireland in Europe on 26 & 27 October 2017.

The main conference on the Friday will feature seven speakers:

Lindsay Hayes has written for many senior Republicans: John McCain, Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney. Lindsay now runs her own writing consultancy Redpath Writing. She will be delivering the closing keynote.

Hélène Faure spent two years as a speechwriter working for former French Prime Minister, Manuel Valls. She now works on Baron Noir – a French TV show about politics.

Mark Morris previously worked for the UK Government in Whitehall and now writes for the Secretary General of NATO in Brussels.

Lech Mintowt-Czyz moved into speechwriting after more than 20 years as a news journalist for British newspapers. He now works for Shell.

Fergal Nolan works for the current Enlargement and Neighbourhood policy European Commissioner, Johannes Hahn.

Thomas Hart studied Classics at the University of Amsterdam. Currently, he works in The Hague as speechwriter for the Dutch Minister of Economic Affairs.

Nathalie Milio works as a cabinet advisor to Governor Cathy Berx of the Province of Antwerp. She is one of the driving forces behind the Belgian Speechwriters’ Network.

The conference will be chaired by European Commission interpreter Alexander Drechsel.

There are also three options for pre-conference training on 26 October.

The former Head of Channel Four Drama and Controller of BBC Drama Production, John Yorke, will be doing a workshop on Rhetoric & The Hollywood Blockbuster.

Martin Shovel & Martha Leyton will be teaching The Mystery of the Metonym – a 1 day seminar on how to write great speeches using the most powerful speechwriting tool most of us have never heard of!

Alan Barker will be solving the mystery of Plain speaking for international audiences – a 1-day seminar on speechwriting in English as a foreign language.

‘Speechwriters working for top people are expected to perform miracles. We help our employers produce something to say on every occasion, with style, and strive to make people like them when they speak. Our conferences help us to realise how well we do and at the same time pick up some tips on how to do it better. And, contrary to what some countries like to think, this process works best at a European level.’ said organiser Brian Jenner.

An early-bird ticket for both days costs €925 plus VAT. For just the conference costs €399 + VAT.

You can purchase a ticket here.

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