4th until 14th of May 2017
Kannavia village-Nicosia District -Cyprus
Intercultural understanding is important when we talk about Europe. By learning old traditions and cultures we become more aware of our own identity and the one we share with other (European) countries.
This youth exchange explored the traditional dances of five European countries and gave the opportunity to young people with no or little dance experience to get to know more about dances and eventually about Europe. The project involved 30 young participants from Cyprus, Bulgaria, Italy, Hungary and Norway and was primarily oriented to people interested in traditional arts habits and intercultural understanding. We focused on folklore dances since we come from countries that still have living dance traditions, and we believe we have a lot to share with, and receive from, all partner countries. Dancing in this case was used as the main form of communication, and contributed to an effective interaction of eliminating language barriers. This project involved youth with fewer opportunities mainly with social, financial and geographical obstacles.
The five involved countries had the opportunity to share three traditional dances with the participants. That included the practical part of the dances as well as some knowledge behind it. This way participants had the opportunity to increase the cultural awareness and expression and to improve their own cross-cultural understanding and European identity. After a week of practicing, participants organised a dance performance in the square of Kannavia where they had the opportunity to interact with locals and show them their new skills.
Apart the dancing part, during Dance Your Culture, participants created a shortdocumentary reflecting on how the young people experience culture and the folklore dances. After a workshop on video, photo and sound editing software, participants grabbed their cameras, put in practice their digital competences and produced their own film.
Another result that came out from this project is that participants increase the communication in foreign language and established Euopean friendships and network among them. In order to encourage intercultural dialogue and bonding, we organised intercultural evening. During that, participants had the opportunity to share and to learn some history and food from each country using interacting methods. We also created a board where we wrote some basics words and phrases in all the participants’ mother tongues.
In Dance Your Culture, we did not learn it, we dance it!!
Here you can see the Facebook photo album that was created for the youth exchange Dance Your Culture.