Member country: United Kingdom Contact person: Barbara Eifler (Chief Executive)
Who?: Barbara Eifler is the Chief Executive of Making Music. Making Music is the UK organisation for leisure-time music groups, with over 3,500 member groups throughout the UK. Our members are choral societies, gospel choirs, community choirs, amateur orchestras, brass bands, jazz ensembles, folk groups, ukulele groups, drumming circles, handbell ringers, samba groups, hobby rock bands, etc.
What is the overall mission of this team during the Arts Take Part project?
The mission of the Pioneer Project Team is officially ‘To implement full support to innovative cross-border pilot work, identify and assess new innovative cross-border pilot work, exchange good practice and share innovative ideas, including topics of engaging marginalised social groups (ageing, disadvantaged, ethnic, migrants)’, and we do that by ‘providing contact fora, project fair meetings, and advice and helpdesk; and initiate one own pilot project and allocate micro-grants to new initiatives – which is of course a lot of work for a team of four people.
Thank you for your interest in the Amateo Award! The submission period for the Award 2019 is now closed. Out of 65 beautiful projects and initiatives the jury will select 5 finalists. In January-February 2020 the third edition of the Award will start. We hope to meet you then.
My baby grandson is living with us for a few months. He’s culturally emancipated. He participates in his own small cultural and creative life without a policy, strategy or state subsidy in sight. Some picture books, building blocks, his grannie’s songs, his mum’s dancing rhythms and his father’s stories are all embraced with curiosity and energy.
From the day we are born our creative impulses are strong. Amateo, Europe’s network supporting active participation in arts and culture, recognises that those impulses can stay with us throughout our lives, from birth to old age. An active creative and cultural life can bring pleasure and it can have a very positive impact on so many other aspects of our lives as individuals and communities.
EUROPEAN CITIZENS AND CULTURAL ACTORS SAY: “SUPPORTING CULTURE IS SUPPORTING EUROPE!”
Culture is the foundation of European unity, underpinning our sense of belonging to a common project. It constitutes an enormous economic asset, enhances community cohesion, intercultural understanding and solidarity. Culture promotes democratic participation; in times of growing polarisation and challenges to freedom of expression, safeguarding artistic freedom and diversity is crucial. Therefore, culture needs a proper financial commitment to ensure the sustainability of the European project.
Member country: Denmark Contact person: Peter Rafn Dahm
My name is Peter Rafn Dahm and I work as artistic and developmental consultant for DATS.
Who: Danish Amateur Theatre and Stage Arts/Performing Arts – is, as indicated by our
name, an umbrella for all kinds of non-professional drama, theatre and performance activities in Denmark. And we are the only organisation that serve and represent these activities.
Amateo celebrated its tenth birthday in Ljubljana, Slovenia, where the network was originally founded in 2008. The annual conference was held in Ljubljana at Cankarjev dom, while the first ever Amateo Award was presented at a special ceremony in Kranj as part of the launch of the Slovenian Week of Amateur Arts (Teden ljubiteljske kulture).
The first annual Amateo Award has been announced at a ceremony held in Ljubljana, Slovenia.
The inaugural winners are EdvanHoornFucktheSystem from the Netherlands!
In 2017 the Dutch theatre group Op Roet decided to make the performance, EdVanHoornFuckTheSystem, about a very special guy from the city of Hoorn, his name is Ed. It’s based on a true story about a guy – a loner – who works at a refugee camp in Syria. He finds himself fighting the systems at NGOs, the United Nations… because the money does not always reach the people/refugees who really need it. They made this play with 40 actors, musicians and singers. By matching 20 refugees from Syria, Iraq and Eritrea with a Dutch buddy, the creative process became an inclusive and social process as well, with a beautiful and inspiring result. The refugees played an integral part of the performance and this performance gave them a natural way to learn the language and, most importantly, to make new friends.
The jury selected this project for their outstanding social impact, their innovative way of making a non-professional theatre performance and the beautiful artistic result that was the result of this performance.
“We were very, very proud and honoured. It means a lot to us because now we are sure that we made a project & a performance with a lot of participation from the community and universal meaning, so it means a lot to us.
I think there are a lot of prejudices surrounding refugees and you can only really get away from that if you can really meet, really listen to the refugees’ stories and think ‘there’s a person’. We want to give the refugees a voice and a face.
Every refugee buddied up with a member of the cast, learning about each other and making friends. And the play and the performance of Ed van Hoorn became a very special moment where cultures were shared. Every performance, it was so very special to see that the audience was very touched when the story of the individual refugee was told by them.”
– Lyda Tijsen, Op Roet
“All of the projects on the Amateo Award shortlist were incredibly inspiring in different ways. It was a very difficult decision for the judging panel to select just one winner. Op Roet’s EdvanHoornFucktheSystem project really stood out as an example that embodies the power of participatory culture to have real, positive impact in our communities. The creativity and dedication evident in this project makes it a thoroughly deserving winner of the first ever Amateo Award!”
– Klemen Janežič, Slovenian actor and guest judge for the Amateo Award 2018
Our new programme Arts Take Part – supported by Creative Europe – aims to grow and strengthen the network over the next four years. As part of this new programme and to celebrate our 10th anniversary we have initiated the new Amateo Award celebrating participatory arts in Europe.
These inaugural awards have attracted significant interest from across Europe and we are excited to have received 42 applications from 16 countries. The five shortlisted projects represent exceptional work from Denmark, Slovenia, Belgium, Netherlands and Scotland. All five will be represented at the announcement of the winner on 10 May 2018 in Ljubljana, as part of the Amateo Annual Conference “Before You Say Yes”. The conference is being hosted by Amateo member JSKD in Slovenia.
Aled Rhys-Jones – former Amateo president and member of judging panel said:
“The shortlisting jury for the first Amateo Award considered 42 eligible applications from creative cultural projects in 16 different countries. The range of projects was startlingly diverse from established large scale events involving thousands of participants, to innovative, new, first-time-out projects led by individuals. I was amazed by the breadth of diverse applications in this our first Amateo award and it was very gratifying for the jury to have such a breadth of high quality applications to consider.”
Buddy Beat – UK
The judging panel were impressed with the positive impact this project has had on the quality of life the participants. It has nurtured mental well being, grown their confidence and created a real sense of belonging and support. Their public performances add to both their enjoyment as well as showing the rest of the world how active participation in arts can have a positive effect.
DAOS – Denmark
This summer school can be set as an example throughout Europe. The jury were impressed by the simple, but effective design of this project. This project is intergenerational and focuses on classical music. By it’s simple design they are able to reach a large scale of people and they ensure that people from every age group can actively participate in classical music.
“Over mijn lijf” (‘About my body’) – Belgium
“Over mijn lijf” (‘About My Body’) OPENDOEK Flanders, Belgium. A project which focuses on working with seniors through the challenging medium of physical theatre. This project interested the shortlisting jury for considering the issues relating to senior citizens and active cultural participation. Older amateur actors often withdraw from performing owing to the pressures of line-learning; when, owing to advancing years and failing sensory or memory issues, an otherwise capable performer can suddenly be relegated to serving the refreshments in the interval. The project offers older actors new exciting challenges through working with physical theatre and finding new ways of expression and communication and a new ‘voice’, supported by professional input. The new work is then toured and performed for senior audiences.
EdvanHoornFucktheSystem – The Netherlands
The jury was impressed by their interaction with refugees together with actors and musicians from the Netherlands. They use the refugee theme to create an intense and original play with over 40 actors and musicians. By allocating the refugees with a Dutch buddy, the creative process became an inclusive and social process as well, with a beautiful and inspiring result.
Touching (Dotikanja) – Slovenia
The judging panel were impressed with the positive impact this project has had on community of dystrophic people in Slovenia. Many exhibitions taking place all over Slovenia and the final product wall calendar with finger prints of artists showed artistic value of Dotikanja and great receipt from audience and amateurs. The project gave to the participants energy and power to do more and to express themselves through fine arts.