“Viavai di cultura” is part of the activation and implementation of projects and practices linked to theatre as an educational resource: the challenge, in this case, is to provide primary school pupils with keys to understanding and action on the issue of racism. The pilot project is based on a workshop approach requiring the initiative and active participation of the individual pupil and the collaboration of the group, involving all relational dynamics.
Developed in collaboration with Ascona’s municipal schools and funded by Education21, “Viavai di cultura” envisages the creation of theatre workshops on the themes of diversity and human rights to prevent racial and racist tendencies in young people.
By giving pupils space to experiment with group dynamics, encouraging cooperation and consideration of others on the one hand, and the search for personal strength and their own voice on the other, balancing individual opinions and collective consensus, the project encourages pupils’ autonomous work, which, through collective and small group work, explores themes, develops ideas and designs small theatre situations. The theatre then becomes a tool to help pupils think critically and constructively and be able to create their own perspective. By collectively addressing the different situations created within the theatre workshop, as well as differences of opinion and conflicts, and resolving them constructively together, a sense of collaboration and mutual understanding is fostered.
At the end of this shared journey, based on the theatre workshops but strengthened by the ideas offered daily by classroom teaching, the pupils and teachers involved will be able to acquire fundamental skills to deal with the issue of racism consciously and independently, not only within the school but also in their future lives.
The project is conceived and led by the Scuola elementare di Ascona (Ascona Primary School) and the Accademia Dimitri and is supported by experts from Amnesty International and the Human Rights Foundation.
Through this pilot experience, the Accademia intends to develop essential skills useful for the creation of a stable service of theatre workshops aimed at preventing racism, addressed to primary schools in Ticino.
Project management: Giorgio Gilardi, Scuole elementari Ascona
Researchers: Demis Quadri, Veronica Provenzale, Accademia Dimitri
Lecturers: Daniela Adamina, Cristina Bianchetti, Samanta Perpellini, Scuole elementari Ascona
Pedagogical artists: Shahaf Michaeli and Kate Weinrieb, Accademia Dimitri
Workshop coordination: Hans-Henning Wulf, Accademia Dimitri