What if community theater could support the integration of the refugees?
From 22– 23 June 2017, the partnership of project REACT – Refugee Engagement And integration through Community Theatre gathered together for the third meeting and a National Seminar on Community Theatre as a means of social inclusion.
The partners made the most of this last partner meeting in order to review the first project phase and to plan next year’s events. Particular attention was paid to the first Work Package: refugee theatre show in each country, which could be said to be the “creative spine” of REACT.
The show along with its rehearsing process was entrusted with fostering the intercultural dialogue between the new-coming refugees and the hosting society in a more expressive and captivating kind of way. While acta and RWT had just finished their performance, the team of CSC had been working hard even in order to have the show ready in the following weeks, and thus had the chance to invite the partnership to see the rehearsal. Despite the on-going Ramadan period, the group largely impressed all partners with the amount of energy and diversity working techniques.
In addition, the partnership also organized a national seminar on the afternoon of 22 Jun at CSC’s Conference Room with local stakeholders such as cultural organizations, theatrical companies, and refugee reception centers. It was the occasion for institutions working in the field to share good practices in:
- how to best utilize Community Theatre as a vehicle of social inclusion, specifically in relation to REACT (through the sharing of Martino Lo Cascio, CSC’s Artistic Director), as well as their own project initiatives;
- how to successfully involve refugees and tackle relevant problems.
The seminar also introduced the next opportunity to attend the International Sharing Event in Bristol in March 2018 that will bring together a pan-European collection of community art companies, cultural organizations, freelance practitioners and the likes.
REACT is a 2-year project funded by DG EAC – CREATIVE EUROPE Program – Support for Refugee Integration Projects aiming at fostering a positive intercultural dialogue between the refugees and the host society through theatre. The projectpartnership is composed by 3 organizations which have different but complementary expertise both in the social and artistic field:
- Acta Community Theatre ltd (United Kingdom) – Coordinator
- Stichting Rotterdams Wijktheater (The Netherlands)
- Centro Per Lo Sviluppo Creativo Danilo Dolci (Italy)