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Staging in Public Spaces – Girona, Spain

From the 26th until the 30th of July we were a part of a summer school programme at ERAM University school in Girona, Spain – Staging in public spaces. Since acting isn’t really our primary interest, we were all curious and maybe a bit anxious to see how the workshop would unfold. We were placed in a group of thirty people or so, so one might think that it would be difficult for all of us to get along, let alone connect. But Carla, our mentor, made sure to hit the nail right on the head since day one of the workshop, so all of us felt comfortable to create and express right away.

Everyday was a complete new experience. We started of with telling a bit about ourselves but then straight away jumeped to excercises. Most of the first day we spent inside, exploring movements and seing how we can move together as a group. Sometimes it felt like dancing but sometimes just like a strong bond with the group that was established really quickly. We finished off the day with the game of hide and seek outside the school but to stay on topic, anyone who was found had to join the seeker and they had to move as a group, without words. The movements of the bodies were the tool for comunication on where to go next.

Second day came as a bit of a shock to all of us. We woke up in the morning and left for Barcelona. What we thought will be more of a turistic day in a big city was all of a sudden a public performance. We walked to a view point and started doing simmilar excercises as the day before. A street musician found his spot right next to us and we were encouraged by our mentor to respond to our surroundings which now also included the music. The more excercises we did, more people started observing a big group of young people doing weird stuff. When we already thought we finished, we moved to a more crowded space and had to, as a group, interact with our new found public. It felt like we are on a playground and it wasn’t a big problem to do bunch of stuff in front of complete strangers because you knew there is 30 more people there with you doing exactly the same thing.

It would probably be an even better feeling if Barcelona day happened a bit later in the week so the group would really be connected as we were at the end of the workshop. After that we got the rest of the day to roam free around Barcelona but had to do a short video for whitch we got 3 words that somehow needed to be shown in the clip. We formed smaller groups, did the excercise and got the opportunity to get to know the people in the group a bit better. The next day we watched all the videos from all groups and really saw the creativity of everyone participating in the workshop.

The rest of the workshop we were exploring more exercises that would make us closer as a group, plus finding out new ways of expressing ourselves with just gestures or movements instead of the words. For the last two days we were mostly preparing for the final performance, for which we first divided into smaller groups (5-6 people). All of the groups were supposed to choose a place around ERAM building and try to incorporate some interesting performance idea into the space and the surrounding environment. All four of us were in different groups, so we had different experiences of preparations and performing, as all of the teams chose a completely different subject and way to build up their own performance.

The last day was dedicated completely to performances, each group was performing for all the other people from the workshop, we made the plan with the convenient order of groups so we would be able to see everything and had enough time to prepare for each performance. At the end we all shared our experience with the group and the mentor, from our point of view the whole workshop was an extremely interesting and moving experience to go out from your comfort zone and explore yourself with the way we don’t usually do it. We are really thankful for all the organisers of the workshop for such an experience and appreciate our chances of joining this kind of a project.

Arta Kroni, Ana Logar, Tamara Kirina, Milena Brkić

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